India's first foldable PC: Are we ready for it?

Written By: Priyanka Sharma Pahwa WION
New Delhi Published: Aug 31, 2021, 01:58 PM(IST)

Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Fold Photograph:( WION )

Story highlights

This is a revolutionary new product. But will it appeal to the masses?

Is it a chic notebook?

Is it a laptop?

Is it a tablet?

Keep guessing.

Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 Fold is all of the above and more, but more than anything, it is a glimpse into the future.

The word "foldable" entered the technology lingo a few years ago and now, it's become a coveted feature when we talk of smartphones. A stunning screen can now fold and give us windows to multi-task, enjoy content and manage our tasks like a breeze. The new, uber-luxe member in Lenovo's ThinkPad family is targeted at new remote, office and hybrid working models.

But are the masses ready for a foldable PC? I ask that because it is available at the starting price of a whopping Rs 329,000!

We'll try and answer that in this review.

Design

The form factor here is nothing short of gasp-worthy. It is an entirely new form factor so lets take a moment to appreciate that.

Let me paint you a picture. You walk into office, a cafe or even to the airport holding a leather-bound notebook. People around you wonder, who takes notes in this day and age?

And then you unfold the future. The notebook opens up into a brilliant display. I guarantee you, people are going to ask you, what, pray, is in your hands?

This is the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold, a windows tablet that can be folded into a tiny laptop with its own Bluetooth keyboard. It can become a massive tablet when folded out and even be a desktop connected to a wireless keyboard. 

Given the price, you may be afraid to experiment with it but rest assured, it comes with a multi-link torque hinge design so you can fold it with great ease and without fear.

Lenovo says it has been tested against 12 military-grade certification methods which essentially means it's a sturdy gadget.

Fold it into a notebook and I promise you, the hard-bound leather cover will make it look more like a chic notebook than a personal computer.

Weighing under a kilo, this is quite a portable notebook. 

There are two USB-C ports however you don't get any headphone socket. 

Lenovo

And if you're looking for the full tablet experience, go ahead, fold it out and you'll be treated to a seamless 13.3-inch OLED screen with a 2k display. And this is when it looks like a massive personal computer in desktop mode which can help you perform all your tasks. In this mode, you can also use the Bluetooth Mini Fold Keyboard for that full laptop experience.

However, in full laptop mode, the keyboard does appear too small for longer hours of work. So I suggest you fold the screen and use it as mini laptop with the keyboard. And trust me, the infamous crease is hardly visible.

Lenovo

Performance

This is a beast. The X1 Fold comes with the Intel Core i5 hybrid processor and performs well for mundane tasks. The processor allows you to browse online, watch content, make those dreaded presentations while folding the screen into your preferred mode. The Lenovo Mode Switcher also let you choose the windows on the screen.

Battery

The battery lasted me around 6 hours in laptop or desktop mode and could be higher if you use the X1 Fold simply as a tablet. The battery performance could have been better but you've got to make compromises on a few fronts when holding a futuristic gadget.

Who will buy this?

The laptop market is brimming with options for all budgets. So when a product enters the market at well above Rs 3 lakh, eyebrows are raised and most start sweating buckets at the mere mention.

Well, this futuristic beast isn't for everyone and the pricing is not the only reason. Futuristic technology can be overwhelming for most of us, even those that love it.

Even with all the bells and whistles, it's difficult to justify the price tag given that people will probably use it as a laptop or as a desktop. 

And yet, as I see foldable smartphones being used by both millennials and their parents, I can't help but wonder, perhaps there is an appetite to invest in a piece of futuristic technology?

For now, we can marvel at the fact that one gadget can fold and unfold into multiple others without so much of a crease.

The Verdict

What I Love:

  • Futuristic form factor
  • Folds into a chic notebook
  • Superior content viewing with Dolby Vision

What I don't love

  • Keyboard is too small
  • Pricing: Not for the masses
  • Battery could be better

Specs at a glance

Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Fold: Starts at Rs 3,29,000

  • Intel Core i5 processor
  • Up to Windows 10 Pro
  • 13.3-inch OLED display
  • Dolby Atmos Sound
  • Weighs 999 grams
  • Comes with Bluetooth keyboard, stylus
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