Along with a host of notebooks that Lenovo launched at the CES 2021, it also launched two new docking stations. One connects to devices by Thunderbolt 4.0 and the other uses a USB Type C cable.
They both feature silent detection, download, and install of firmware updates powered by Microsoft Azure Sphere, which allows remote capabilities for updates, port status monitoring, and device management without the need for a PC to be connected. They are specially designed to address dock manageability pain points due to increased work-from-anywhere situations.
The Thunderbolt 4.0 boasts more features due to the additional legroom provided by the Thunderbolt port. Lenovo will release the availability and pricing of both the docks at a later stage.
The Lenovo Thunderbolt Smart Dock is definitely better-specced than its USB C counterpart. There is a lot more variety in connectivity. It can power up to four 4K displays or one 8K display. The dock is equipped with two DisplayPort 1.4 ports, one HDMI 2.1 port and a Thunderbolt 4.0 port which can output video.
Other input options include four USB 3.1 Type-A ports of 10 Gb/s, one out of which can charge peripherals. The Smart Dock can power up to 100W of power. RJ45 port, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Intel vPro are some of the connectivity options.
The Lenovo Universal USB C Smart Dock can power up to three 4K displays because of its two DisplayPort 1.4 ports and an HDMI 2.0 port. Additionally, it also comes with a special headphone/mic combo jack. All of its three USB Type-A ports support data transfer at 10 Gb/s, and one of them can also be used to charge devices.
Two USB 2.0 Type-A ports are included as well. The USB C Smart Dock concludes things with one 10 Gb/s USB Type-C port which can also double up as a source of power. The dock can deliver up to 100W of power between the USB Type-A and USB Type-C port. Finally, there is also ethernet connectivity via an RJ45 port. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are options for wireless connectivity.