BARCELONA: LENOVO UNVEILED an update to its Android-powered Yoga Tablet 10 at Mobile World Congress (MWC) this week, giving it a much needed display upgrade and a faster processor.
The Yoga Tablet 10 HD+ now features a full HD 1920x1200 resolution screen as well as a new quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor. However, the updates have subsequently had a knock-on effect on what was a rather decent price. Lenovo's updated Android tablet now costs £299 instead of £199. Here we take a look to see if the upgrades seem worth the added cost.
Design and build
Like its predecessor, the Lenovo Yoga Tablet 10 HD+ is all about design. It has a unique profile due to its cylindrical hinge design, apparently based on a folded magazine, which is reminiscent of the Sony Tablet S that was launched in 2011.
Lenovo claims that this folded magazine design makes it easier and more comfortable to hang on to the tablet. During our hands-on, we found this is only really the case in portrait mode, giving you something to grab with your left hand when reading a webpage in portrait mode, for example. In landscape mode, the Yoga Tablet feels no easier to use than a standard flat tablet, because it just means that it's slightly heavier at the bottom and doesn't balance as well in your hands.
The cylinder hinge does have some other welcome benefits though, such as a hinged stand that folds out at the back so it can be stood up in what Lenovo calls its "stand mode" allowing you to watch movies and free your hands for other things.
Lenovo is touting three of these "multi-modes" in the Yoga Tablet's design: the mentioned "stand mode" as well as "tilt mode", which refers to placing the Yoga Tablet on a flat surface so that the rounded part angles the screen towards you, and a rather ridiculous sounding "hold mode", which basically just means holding the thing in your hand by the rounded edge.
That said, the different modes are useful, especially compared to standard flat tablets, for which you must buy an additional case if you want to tilt or stand them up in similar positions.
The cylindrical handle also holds a dual battery, which Lenovo compares to those "typically found in laptops" to give the tablet 18 hours of battery life. In our full review of the original Lenovo Yoga Tablet 10, the device lasted for around 11 hours of uninterrupted use on full brightness while connected to WiFi. This included word processing, watching several movies and Youtube clips, music listening and general web browsing without letting the screen turn off or go into power-saving mode. Though this didn't match Lenovo's claims, we were still rather impressed with the battery life compared to those of other tablets on the market.
We can expect that the updated HD display will have an effect on our findings when we reviewed the older model, especially since Lenovo has also updated the Yoga Tablet's processor to a more powerful Qualcomm chip.
Overall, the Yoga Tablet 10 HD+ has retained its solid, premium design due to its half aluminium construction. The rear cover and screen surround are plastic, while the stand and edge of the tablet are aluminium, making it feel strong but lightweight. There are also front-facing speakers for clear sounding audio, plus a headphone jack at the right of the cylindrical edge and a power switch on the left side.