Lenovo’s IdeaPad Yoga ultrabook has all the features and specs you’d expect from the category: a 17mm thin chassis, around 3 pounds, and a smooth, streamlined design. It’s beautiful as well, following on the aesthetics we saw in the U Series notebooks that eschew the MacBook Air clone approach and go distinctly Lenovo.
However, there’s more to this ultrabook than all the usual news. There’s a clue in the name: Yoga. From that name you’d expect the laptop to be able to sun salute and downward dog. Well… it can.
Thanks to an innovative hinge design the Yoga can not only open 180 degrees to lie flat, it also bends around all the way so you can use it easily as a tablet.
What good is that without a touchscreen? It has one of those, too. A 10 point touchscreen, in fact. A sweet feature on a 14-inch display for sure.
Now you’re probably thinking: that’s all well and good, but Windows 7 isn’t so great with touch. And you’re right. That’s why the Yoga is a Windows 8 machine.
I know, the good news just keeps coming, right?
Trust me when I say that the Yoga is as neat as it seems, just take a gander at our hands-on video of the Yoga in tablet mode.
The key to the design is the hinge. The double actuated design acts like a traditional hinge from 0 to 180 degrees so you won’t have to change the way you open and close the laptop. Once it hits that 180 degree mark the keyboard and touchpad shut down and the second hinge action kicks in. From here you can fold the screen all the way back so it lies flat against the bottom part or even stand it tent-style or rest it at any angle with the deck facing down.
Since the keyboard and touchpad don’t work in this mode you can set it on your lap without messing up what you’re doing on the screen. It’s probably better on a table. And since the keyboard is recessed, when it’s on a flat surface the keys don’t even get pressed.
With Windows 8 users can navigate completely by touch, and having 10-finger touch on the Yoga means users can not only paint and draw and swipe but also play advanced games or take advantage of piano apps and the like.
Inside the IdeaPad will come with several configuration options including Core i3, i5 and i7 processors, SSDs up to 256GB, USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports, full SD card slot and full HDMI port.
When can you get your hands on this beauty? The sad news is that the release date isn’t set in stone yet. When Windows 8 is ready the Yoga will ship. The ball’s in Microsoft’s court. Pricing will be around $1,000.
Once the Yoga does launch Lenovo promises more nice surprises with this ultrabook.
Lenovo has also promised us that this is not another U1 Hybrid, it’s really coming to the U.S. as soon as Windows 8 is ready.