Lenovo Unleashes Hybrid PC
Sorry if I sound like a fan, but Lenovo is really firing on all cylinders this year. Introducing the IdeaPad U1 hybrid notebook, Lenovo is touting it as the first PC in the industry that is essentially two devices in one. It’s not just one device with separate functions, it’s actually two computers. Here’s the deal.
In the picture, you’ll see what looks like a laptop and a tablet. And that’s exactly what it is. Each device is separate of itself. Each one has its own processor and operating system. Lenovo says that they work together but also independently. They compliment each other to your computing needs: tablet browsing, or e-mail machine.
Needless to said, this is something very different. Here’s the specs:
- The U1 has a footprint just smaller than a piece of notebook paper and weighs 3.8 pounds. It’s designed to be as thin as they can possibly make it.
- In “clamshell form” the system boasts an 11.6 inch HD LED screen running Windows 7.
- Detached, the screen weighs just 1.6 pound, and has multi touch. The slate runs an ARM processor with Lenovo’s customized Skylight operating system.
- Using Lenovo’s Hybrid Switch technology, the two PCs can seamlessly toggle between the two processors. Users can surf the Web or watch a movie in laptop mode, then continue from the same point without interruption when they detach the screen.
This has far reaching implications, not just inside the consumer area, but inside the work area. To be able to swap from tablet to laptop is incredibly efficient. It essentially eliminates the problem of having “too many devices” by making both devices function as one, and making them useful at that. It’s an interesting sell because no one has ever done this before. I’m not exactly sure what the VAR implications are, but I’m sure people are already speculating on ways this can be utilized outside the consumer market.
Of course, something this cool can’t be oohed-and-ahhed over without some sort of cynicism. I question the response time between plugging and unplugging devices. How fast does it load up where you left off? Does each device have a hard drive? If I’m watching a movie locally on the “laptop” side, and pull the tablet out, does it transfer my movie over? How quickly does it load up web pages after yanking the screen out, and does flash video suffer as a result?
Lenovo is looking to push this out by June 1st 2010, with a MSRP under $1000. Until I actually get my hands on this hybrid device I’ll have lots and lots of questions.