Lenovo is paying special attention to the small business market with their ThinkCentre a63 desktop. Has their attention paid off? Lenovo provided the a63 system for our review from the small business perspective.
Here are the positive points:
- This thing is quiet, very quiet. It also runs cool.
- The wide aspect monitors are excellent. I hooked up two monitors, with no trouble at all.
- Energy efficiency and greener manufacturing seemed to be well thought out. I appreciate that.
- The enhanced boot and shut down sequences developed by Microsoft and IBM have paid off. I noticed that start up and shut down are quick.
I also appreciated some of the listed features that seemed particularly good for small business:
- Migrate software tool. I didn’t test it, but it’s a good addition.
- One button recovery. I haven’t had to test this yet, but I’m glad to know it’s there.
- Room to add a second hard drive and tool-less entry. I still think of myself as the person ready to break open the case and install something. :)
- Rigorous testing. Looks like they took this pretty seriously. Good to know.
OK, what didn’t I like?
- Ads. Lenovo includes some proprietary software, Idea Notes, that puts ads on your screen. It also handles updates, etc, but ads? Really? When you shut Idea Notes off, it gives a dire warning about missing out on important product support messages. I found no option to receive only support messages and not ads. This, I think, is a bad move for Lenovo.
- Trial ware. This is a huge pet peeve of mine. I don’t want trial versions of software, especially for the small business market. Give us a good price on the software, or leave it off. Still, it’s easy to uninstall.
- The cheap feeling keyboard and mouse. I promptly tossed those aside. A minor point, but if they are serious about the small business market, a decent business-like keyboard would make sense.
- It’s big. Really, this is not a home office-friendly size.
Overall, I like this machine. It’s solid. The quiet fan is a bonus in a business setting, and the ability to easily handle two monitors is a plus. The extra work on the streamlined boot and shut down pays off. Now, Lenovo, let go of the trial ware and ads.
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Becky started Small Biz Survival in 2006 to share rural business and community building stories and ideas with other small town business people. She and her husband have a small cattle ranch and are lifelong entrepreneurs. Becky is an international speaker on small business and rural topics.