Samsung might be struggling with its foldable phone, but that is not stopping other tech companies from experimenting with this technology. Now Lenovo has unveiled a foldable ThinkPad.
Foldable PC for all your needs
Lenovo unveiled the foldable PC during the Lenovo Transform event at the Accelerate conference in Florida. Lenovo’s foldable PC belongs to the ThinkPad X1 family, and the company claims it is the world’s first foldable PC.
Lenovo has yet to give a name to this foldable device because it is still a prototype. Unlike smartphones, this PC has a bigger form factor. According to the company, this new PC will be a full-performance Intel Windows device and feature a flexible 13-inch 2K OLED display with a 4:3 aspect ratio.
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Further, Lenovo states that the device uses LG Display’s foldable screen technology and supports a pen. The company also claims this PC is always on and always connected, thanks to its form factor, which allows it to “transition with you from day to night.”
In tablet mode, the device can be used for watching videos, while in a book mode with two sides folded like a book, it is good for reading. There is also a productivity mode, which transforms it into a laptop with a digital keyboard. In laptop mode, the device features a 9.6-inch screenm while the bottom part is available to use as a touch-based keyboard. Users can also pair the device with a Bluetooth keyboard to get a more laptop-like experience.
“This is not a phone, tablet, or familiar hybrid; this is a full-fledged laptop with a foldable screen,” Lenovo said in a press release.
Expected specs of Lenovo’s foldable ThinkPad
As far as other specifications, the device supports touch and a stylus. It uses the Wacom AES as a pen. It features two USB Type-C ports, Dolby stereo speakers and support for W-Fi and 4G LTE. It has a front-facing IR camera with Windows Hello and “all-day” battery life according to the company.
Windows Central speculates that the device will use a processor from Intel’s 10nm mobile lineup. The prototype device ran on Windows 10, and Lenovo claims it will be a “Windows-based device.” However, Windows Central believes the device will run the “Windows “Lite” OS.
Lenovo’s new foldable ThinkPad is almost the same size as a hardcover book and weighs less than two pounds. The company sees it as the device of the future because it combines the productivity of a laptop with smartphone portability.
“This is the only device you’ll need in the future to be productive all day long,” Lenovo said when introducing the new PC.
The company sees this device as a primary PC that can replace a laptop and is ideal for business executives and tech enthusiasts who travel a lot. During its demonstration, Lenovo gave some real-world potential uses for its foldable PC, such as checking social feeds, viewing top news sites, checking emails during the commute, using it as a laptop to work, taking notes in a meeting and more.
Lenovo shared no further details on the new foldable PC but plans to offer more details on it next year.
Initial reviews are all good
Unlike the Galaxy Fold, which was initially kept away from the media, several media sites were able to get a hands-on experience with Lenovo’s new foldable ThinkPad. For instance, The Verge claims the device folds as intended and Windows worked well, but improvements are needed on the hardware side.
Writers at Engadget said the device didn’t have the “obvious crease” and that they were able to hold it with one hand. As far as the hinge, the site said although it was “sturdy,” it was easy to open and close. A Lenovo executive told Engadget that concerns related to the hinge, protection and screen durability had been addressed.
Windows Central also noted the absence of a crease, saying “there is an anti-scratch layer built into the display versus being a sticker on top.” Further, the tech site says a crucial difference between the foldable ThinkPad and the Galaxy Fold is the support of inking in the former, which enables users to draw on the screen.
“Using the foldable PC was remarkable. Closed, it looks and feels just like a hardcover book or moleskin especially with the leatherette wrapping,” Windows Central said.