Lenovo, known for its personal computers for business and enterprise customers, has announced sales of its ThinkPad laptops will surpass 60 million this month, after 18 years on the market. Some 14 ThinkPad laptops are sold every 60 seconds. With more than 2,000 design awards under its belt, ThinkPad has recorded many ground-breaking innovation firsts, including:

  • First modern laptop to fly in space
  • First with a spill-resistant keyboard
  • First with built-in CD-ROM
  • First with built-in DVD-ROM
  • First with built-in wireless
  • First with embedded security subsystem
  • First with built-in fingerprint reader
  • First dual screen mobile workstation

In celebration of this milestone, Lenovo is rewarding customers with a Customer Appreciation Event (this week only) featuring up to a 15 percent discount on select ThinkPad models purchased in the US.

Separately, Lenovo has said it would consider creating a slate-type personal computer for clients that currently use ThinkPad-branded notebooks. "As it makes sense we'll absolutely enter that market," Peter Hortensius, senior vice president of the Think Product Group at Lenovo, told PC World. "I think we have a great foundation from which to build for that." He did not, however, disclose whether such a device was in development or if the plans were purely speculative.

Tablets and slates are currently more consumer-focused. Enterprise customers are just as interested in mobile devices that could complement PCs, but the devices need to be able to do more than just read e-books, watch videos, play games, and check websites or e-mail. These clients require the devices to have long battery life and more input capabilities to create content. Lenovo is not the first company to announce plans for slates aimed at enterprises: Cisco, HP, and Research in Motion have all unveiled such products so far.