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Lenovo Ideapad Yoga 13 review

The 13in ultrabook you can flex into a number of positions
Fri Nov 30 2012, 15:03

Product Lenovo Idea Pad Yoga 13
Specifications 13.3in HD 1600x900 IPS display, Intel Core I7 processor, integrated Intel HD 4000 graphics, 8GB DDR3 memory, 256GB SSD storage, 802.11b/g/n WLAN, Bluetooth 4.0, 1xUSB 2.0, 1xUSB 3.0, 2in1 headphone and mic, 3in1 SD/MMC card reader, eight hour battery life, Windows 8 Professional, 333x225x17mm, 1.54kg
Price From £999

AFTER ALMOST A YEAR'S WAIT since its unveiling at CES in Las Vegas in January, Chinese hardware firm Lenovo has finally sent us a review unit of its flexible hybrid Windows 8 laptop-tablet, the Ideapad Yoga.

Dubbed the firm's first 'multi-mode' notebook, the Yoga is a laptop that performs just as its name suggests, folding into different positions so you can enjoy it in a number of ways.

Lenovo Ideapad Yoga Laptop overall view

Available in two sizes of 11in and 13in, both models' high-definition IPS touchscreen displays are built on a hinge that allows them to tilt 360 degrees, folding it from a laptop to a tablet in one motion.

The 13in model, named the Yoga 13, is not yet available to buy in the UK but will be priced at a substantial £999 when it does hit the market. It certainly won't be one of the cheaper ultrabooks out there, but its unique design offers something original that might be enough to sway consumers into making it their first Windows 8 device.

The Ideapad Yoga can be used in four different positions: "clamshell laptop", "tablet", "stand" and "tent" modes. The clamshell laptop and tablet modes are what you'd expect - a traditional laptop viewing mode and a totally flat tablet mode. Stand mode allows the Yoga's keyboard to face flat on a surface while the screen can be tilted back to watch movies. Tent mode allows you to do the same but prop the Yoga up on its ends, in case you want to view media on a more uneven surface.

Lenovo Ideapad Yoga Laptop overall stand

The Yoga has a built in accelerometer similar to technology seen in most modern smartphones, so that the display rotates automatically by 90, 180 or 270 degrees when turned around. This mode can also be turned on and off by a physical button on the side of the Yoga. Another physical button allows for manual rotation of the display by 90 degree angles when pressed.

Lenovo Ideapad Yoga Laptop tent

Pushing the screen back, turning it all the way around and transforming the Yoga laptop into a tablet is undeniably satisfying, because we've never been able to do that with a laptop before. Without breaking it, that is. Though it does feel a bit odd as a tablet because it's a little thicker than what you'd expect of a tablet at 17mm, tablet mode feels like more of an added bonus than an actual tablet replacement.

Lenovo Ideapad Yoga tablet mode

One good and vital point is that the keyboard is disabled once the screen has reached a point past 180 degrees, so pressing the keys in any position other than laptop won't be recognised. You would expect the keyboard to feel strange when the Yoga is in tablet mode and rested on your lap, but it doesn't, and you become accustomed to it quickly.

A nice added touch is that the Yoga has a volume control switch on the side, similar to the one found on the Ipad for instance, so when it's in tablet mode you can control the volume without having to open it back up into laptop mode.


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