Testing Lenovo – Conclusions

LenovoHelix

At first glance, the similarities are not all that obvious, but look closer…

ChittyChitty

The Lenovo Helix / Win8 combination tries to be all things to all people, thereby saving none. It’s too heavy to be an ultrabook. It’s too cramped to be a production laptop. The best description I can come up with is that it’s an overweight tablet with an under-featured docking station.

The niche that this is designed to fill is, I think, a very narrow one. Someone who doesn’t want a desktop/Nexus combination, with their information kept in the cloud. Someone who wants the mobility of a laptop but who uses a tablet often enough that they are willing to give up some laptop features in order to have a convenient combo.

Our school has done a pretty good job of providing us with in-classroom PC’s, hooked up to the usual array of projectors, document readers, cameras, etc. When I’m in one of those rooms (and the classes I teach require a room that has that technology), all I need to bring is a thumb drive. If I do need to bring my own PC (because it’s got special software on it), the projector plug is VGA, not HDMI.

I have a decent, if elderly, Mac workstation in my office (with SuSe Linux running in VBox), and all the Linux computers I need at home. I have no requirement to schlep a computer from place to place, and I suspect most of my colleagues don’t, either. A couple of years ago, when I did need to carry a computer around with me, a netbook provided all the power and features I needed.

I’m returning this early, to give a laptop aficionado a chance at it.

This is the last of three entries on a Lenovo Helix evaluation unit I borrowed from the school. The Introduction is here, and the Closer Look is here.

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