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Lenovo, Intel to produce e-commerce PC

Lenovo will produce an e-commerce PC as part of a partnership with Intel and Alibaba

Lenovo Group will manufacture a PC designed to make e-commerce easier for small and medium-sized Chinese businesses, bringing to fruition plans hatched in May by Intel and Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba.com.

Equipped with e-commerce applications from Alibaba, the new computers will be based on Lenovo’s Yangtian desktop PC line and hit store shelves in September, the computer maker said in a statement.

The Lenovo announcement ends the search for a manufacturing partner by Intel and Alibaba. When the two companies announced plans in May to build an e-commerce PC, they didn’t have a manufacturer for the computer, or a firm date for when the computers would be available.

While the release date for the computers is now clear, other details have yet to be announced.

For example, Lenovo’s statement did not detail technical specifications of the new PC line, except to say the computers will be based on Intel processors made using a 45-nanometer manufacturing process. That description rules out the use of Intel’s Celeron and Dual-Core Pentium processors, which are produced using an older 65nm process, according to Intel’s current price list.

Another processor line that will not be used in the e-commerce PC is Intel’s low-cost Atom processor. These chips are made using a 45nm process, but Intel executives specifically ruled out this option in May, saying the e-commerce PC would not be a “nettop,” a term the chip maker uses to describe low-cost desktops based on Atom processors.

Unless Intel releases a 45nm version of the Celeron or Dual-Core Pentium during the next two months, this means Lenovo’s e-commerce computer will likely use a Core 2 Duo processor, such as the 2.66GHz Core 2 Duo E8190.