Lenovo Offers Cheap Vibe K5 Phones and Tab3 Tablets for its 2016 Lineup
Despite acquiring Motorola, it seems that Lenovo isn’t too keen on dropping its brand out of the smartphone race. At this year’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Lenovo has unveiled the newest smartphone and tablet lineup aimed at the budget conscious consumer.
Lenovo Vibe K5 Series
As the most powerful device offered by Lenovo this year so far, the Vibe K5 Plus is Lenovo’s latest mid-range offering that shouldn’t eat too much into your wallet. While the specifications aren’t much to get excited about (5″ 1080p LCD IPS display, Snapdragon 616 processor, 2GBs of RAM, 16GBs ROM with a micro-SD card slot, 2750 mAh battery capacity, a 13 MP rear camera and 5 MP front facing camera, and dual nano-SIM card slots), the design is reminiscent of higher end flagship models from the likes of HTC, Samsung, or Huawei. The Vibe K5 Plus offers a full aluminum body at a 8.2mm thickness, and you can nab one in either black, gold, or white color options.
On the other hand, you can grab the identically designed Vibe K5 (without the ‘Plus’) if you’re strapped for cash. If you do so, you’ll trade the Snapdragon 616 for a Snapdragon 415 and a 720p LCD IPS display rather than the 1080p display on the Plus model. Everything else is the same (yes, that includes Lenovo’s UI skin on top of Android 5.1 Lollipop). The Vibe K5 Plus retails at $149 while the Vibe K5 retails at $129. Come March when the two devices will be available, you’ll have to ask yourself if the $20 savings is worth it to grab the Vibe K5 over the Vibe K5 Plus.
Lenovo Tab3 Aims for Portability
Lenovo’s 2016 tablets are shaving off bezels and trimming fat wherever possible in order to improve portability. You’ll have the option to choose between three different sized models this year, starting from the lowest end 7″ tablet to the slightly improved 8″ model to the respectably mid-ranged 10″ model.
First off, the Lenovo Tab3 7″ offers a MediaTek 1.0GHz quad-core processor (exact model unspecified at this time), 1GB of RAM, 16GBs of storage with the ability to expand via a micro-SD card slot, and a 5MP rear camera/2MP front facing camera. The screen resolution comes at a rather low 1024×600, a resolution we haven’t seen on tablets in many years. The tablet is packed with a 3450 mAh battery and is 8.8 mm thick/100 mm wide, but at least it runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow so Doze mode should help some with the battery. Oh, and it comes with dual-sim LTE card support which makes it a cheap option to take overseas.
Next up, Lenovo’s Tab3 8″ model is a minor upgrade over the Tab3 7″ model. For a slight bump in price, you get a 1280×800 resolution panel, a larger 4290 mAh battery, and 1GB/2GBs of RAM depending on the model you purchase. Due to the increase in screen size, the device is slightly thicker (albeit only by 0.1mm) and obviously wider (by 25mm) but is otherwise identical to the 7″ model.
Finally, Lenovo is trying to tackle the business market with the Lenovo Tab3 10 for Business model. You get a 10.1″ 1920×1200 resolution display with dual speakers and Gorilla Glass. The device offers an improved camera (8MP rear and 3MP front facing), upgraded RAM (between 2GB or 3GBs depending on the model), and improved storage capacity (32/64GB models with a micro-SD card slot). You also get a larger battery at 7,000 mAh capacity as well as a dust-proof and splash-proof body, and you can dock the tablet into an external Bluetooth keyboard with a kickstand (sold separately). As with the lower end models, the device is running Android 6.0 Marshmallow, however, this model is lacking the dual-sim LTE card slot that the 7″ model offers. In addition, the device is still going to be running a MediaTek quad-core processor, albeit clocked a bit higher at 1.3GHz.
Pricing and availability for the tablets has been partially confirmed. We know that the Tab3 7″ will cost $129 for the LTE equipped model, but no word yet on the pricing for the WiFi only model. The Tab3 8″ will set you back $99 or $149 for the WiFi-only and LTE models respectively, while the Tab3 10″ will cost you $199 for the WiFi-only and $249/$299 for the 2GB/3GB RAM LTE models. We don’t know yet when the keyboard accessory for the Tab 3 10″ model will be sold, but the tablets themselves should go on sale sometime this June. As for which markets the device will be available to purchase in, we likely won’t see the phones in the Western markets due to how low-end they are, but the tablets may see a wide international release due to their competitive pricing.