Lenovo leverages two of its most high-profile acquisitions to create its first business-focused smartphone; Designed to carry the torch once carried by the likes of BlackBerry; Meet the newly unveiled ThinkPhone from Motorola.
The ThinkPad brand is well-established in the industry, and has a long standing business with its rugged, no-nonsense designs, solid battery life, capable hardware, and once-legendary security. Now, Lenovo hopes it can distill the same qualities that define these noteworthy notebooks into a phone; It is meant to serve as the ideal partner for business users.
With the exception of an affordable phone or a high-end gaming phone, Lenovo itself has generally stayed off the pedal when it comes to competing in the smartphone space — under its own name, at least.
After it acquired Motorola from Google back in 2014, the company has continued to build on that iconic legacy brand, introducing some of its most capable devices in years in 2022; With Motorola Razr 2022 and Edge 30 Ultra being among the best Motorola phones available right now. This momentum – combined with Lenovo’s ownership of both Moto and the ThinkPad brand – is believed to be what led to the creation of the ThinkPhone.
The device itself carries a similar design to the cameras and external components of the latest consumer-focused Motos — such as the new Moto X40, which just launched in China — but features a more rugged design, thanks to an aluminum frame, Gorilla Glass Victus front and a carbon-inspired aramid fiber-backed ThinkPad. x1.
The entire device is also IP68 certified against dust and water ingress, as well as the latest MIL STD 810H compliance, with a 1.25m drop resistance.
Inside, it’s as powerful as any late 2022 flagship, with a 6.6-inch 144Hz pOLED display, Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 chipset paired with up to 12GB of RAM and up to 512GB of storage, and a battery. 5000 mAh supports 68W fast charging. The camera system also shows promise, with a 50MP main sensor, capable of up to 8K video recording.
Of course, all of these near top-shelf devices mean nothing if the software experience can’t back them up, but thankfully Motorola seems to have taken steps to offer some added value for business users.
As with consumer-focused Motos, the ThinkPhone benefits from an overall clean user experience — Android 13 out of the box, with a promise of three years of OS updates and four years of security updates (security updates monthly for three years, with monthly updates at iv) which is better than most other Motorola phones.
However, it goes even deeper with a dedicated security chip in Moto KeySafe and AI-powered Moto Threat Defense software, as well as fleet management tools for IT departments to handle dozens of ThinkPhones at once.
Motorola’s desktop-like ready-to-go experience—found in many of its best consumer-focused phones—is also built with the Think 2 ThinkPad, which offers tighter integration with your ThinkPad companion.
These include automatic hotspot connection, a unified clipboard and notifications, drag-and-drop file management between devices, access to ThinkPhone apps and user experience from ThinkPad, and webcam support on PC via ThinkPhone (allowing use of its superior camera sensors).
With the cherry on top is the Red Switch — a programmable (red) side button that supports single and double tap gestures to quickly launch your choice of shortcuts or apps.
Analysis: What about the rest of us?
Lenovo and Motorola are clearly looking to make a splash in the business market with their ThinkPhone. Many consumer-ready smartphones are already suitable for many business use cases, but the exclusive aspects of the ThinkPhone — such as the dedicated security chip, the Think 2’s advanced application readiness, ultra-rugged design and collectively dedicated hotkey — give it something of an edge over other off-the-shelf competitors. for institutions.
However, beyond fleet device management support, these distinctions are all blemishes that would be quite welcome on Motorola’s consumer-ready smartphones.
You can already buy Motos — like the latest Motorola Defy — and powerful newcomers, like the Ultra mentioned above, but the ThinkPhone is the only device that integrates performance and durability to this degree in Motorola’s existing portfolio, and the fact that the average customer is preventing you from buying such a device seems like a real shame.
The ThinkPhone is set to launch in the coming months in various markets including the US, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, Australia and select Asian countries, with pricing to be revealed at a later date.
We just hope that even if the ThinkPhone never wears off and finds itself on consumer store shelves, the folks behind it at least find their way into Motorola’s broader lineup.