Lenovo recently confirmed that a 25th-anniversary ThinkPad laptop is coming later this year, but the company hasn’t provided many details about what that means.
Now we have (a little) more information. About two years ago Lenovo’s chief design officer David Hill started hinting that the company was considering releasing a “retro ThinkPad” that combines modern hardware with classic design, and then began soliciting ideas from ThinkPad fans.
Now he’s confirmed that some of those ideas will be incorporated into the upcoming 25th anniversary edition ThinkPad.
There still aren’t a lot of details, but here are a few things Hill is saying:
- “It has a wonderful black rubberized coating, three TrackPoint caps, and a keyboard to die for.”
- “Exact pricing and availability are not finalized, but I can assure you it will not cost $5000!”
- “Lenovo has never been keen on broadly sharing details concerning unannounced products. Retro ThinkPad has not been granted an exception to the corporate policy.”
As for the sub-$5000 price tag line, Hill says that high price tag is nothing more than a rumor. Lenovo does offer some expensive laptops that sell for well over $1,000. But the company also has entry-level models that are priced closer to $300… even in its ThinkPad lineup. I suspect the Retro ThinkPad won’t be that cheap, but it’s nice to know it probably won’t be priced like an iMac Pro.
I’d be surprised if the Retro ThinkPad had anything other than a black and red color scheme, which has been the case for pretty much every member of the ThinkPad family. It’ll also likely have a TrackPoint in the center of the keyboard as well as a TouchPad below it. But as for retro features, perhaps we’ll get a multi-color ThinkPad logo, a throwback-style keyboard with 7 rows, and maybe a screen with a 4:3 aspect ratio?
I wouldn’t hold my breath on that last one… but it’s not beyond the realm of possibility. While most notebooks in recent years have shipped with 16:9 displays, there are a handful of recent models with 3:2 screens. Maybe PC makers are finally deciding that one size/shape doesn’t fit all.
We should know more about the Retro ThinkPad this fall. Lenovo plans to launch the 25th anniversary edition laptop in October.