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CES 2015

Harmony is How the Lenvo Yoga 3 2-in-1s Will Stand Out



Lenovo, the world’s largest makers of Windows PCs, isn’t just updating its ThinkPad Yoga line or introducing a refreshed Windows Yoga 3 tablet. It’s also bolstering the Lenovo Yoga laptops that helped foster the 2-in-1 Windows market. At the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas Lenovo announced the Yoga 3 11 and Yoga 3 14, two refreshed versions of its convertible laptop.

The Lenovo Yoga 3 11 and the Lenovo Yoga 3 14 feature the same hinges as past iterations. This means that they can quickly go from laptop to tablet. To do so, users just fold the screen backwards. Stand Mode positions each 2-in-1’s display so that they’re easier to reach. So too, does Tent Mode. Lenovo calls folding the screen in so that the touchscreen is flat on the rest of the body Tablet Mode. Both will be available in March, with the Lenovo Yoga 3 11 starting at $799 and the Lenovo Yoga 3 14 starting at $979.

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The Lenovo Yoga 3 11 weighs 2.6 pounds and features an 11.6-inch high-definition touch display. It’s this model that’ll carry an Intel Core M processor, and up to 8GB of RAM. Buyers of the Lenovo Yoga 3 11 can expect to store a lot of stuff; there’s 128GB of storage on the base model. As one might expect, the Yoga 3 11 is the thinnest of the new Yoga 3 breed, measuring 0.6-inches from top to bottom.

Lenovo has managed to stuff a spacious 14-inch high-definition display into what would traditionally be a 13-inch display. This model dumps the less power Intel Core M processor of the Yoga 3 11 in favor of Intel’s 5th generation Intel Core i5 and Intel Core i7 processors. Users can opt for Intel HD Graphics or a discrete NVidia graphics processor. In theory, users who get a version with the graphics card should find it to be a capable gaming and media creation tool. The bigger screen means it needs more battery power, the Yoga 3 14 weighs 3.5 pounds and includes a bigger battery. It’s also slightly thicker than the Yoga 3 11 at 0.7-inches from top to bottom.

Ports are plentiful on both devices. There’s 2 USB 3.0 ports, a single USB 2.0 port, a 4-in-1 media card reader, Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi AC, micro HDMI out for pairing with external monitors and, a combo audio jack. Lenovo has been able to differentiate its machines from those of rivals with innovative hardware and reasonable pricing in the past. More and more it seems the company is trying to offer its buyers a custom software experience too.

Included in the Yoga 3 11 and Yoga 3 14 is Harmony. As its name suggests, Harmony is all about striking a balance between the Yoga family’s different modes. Besides recommending apps and settings changes, Harmony makes apps suggestions and changes settings based on what users are doing. The example that Lenovo provides is reading; when it’s Harmony will change screen brightness if you’re reading a book. Harmony goes a step further than that too. The software suite will also adjust the color temperature of the display to match the room a user is in. Lenovo also says that users can customize apps with Harmony. As described, Harmony works like the Continuum interface Microsoft has coming in Windows 10. That being said, Lenovo is moving into advanced, uncharted territory. The Harmony software could be a decisive win in a crowded 2-in-1 market. A lot of companies are embracing convertible machines, but they aren’t doing a lot to make the convertible experience easier. Lenovo says all of its convertible Windows machines will have Harmony on board.

Read: CES 2015

The Lenovo Yoga 3 11 and Yoga 3 14 will come with Windows 8.1 Update. That’s the latest version of Windows 10 available to users at home. Windows 8.1 add options for booting directly into the Start Screen, automatically baking up to Microsoft’s OneDrive service and more Start Screen customization.

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