When the tablet market began to shrink, manufacturers shifted their focus to creating hybrid devices, known as transformers or 2-in-1 laptops. Although this new category of gadgets appeared relatively recently, it has already won many fans. In short, the transformer is a hybrid tablet and laptop. But what is an important attribute that appeals to consumers? What are the primary 2-in-1 laptops’ pros and cons? If you want to know the answers to these questions, start reading this article immediately.
Short Historical Digression
The first such devices users could admire in the distant ’86 of the last century. The pioneer was IBM which produced a monstrous device weighing five and a half kilograms with a three-inch floppy disk drive. The price tag at the time was no less astounding — $3500.
However, the transformer became widespread only 27 years later, just when Microsoft brought to market Windows 8. This OS version supported touchscreen displays, and Microsoft and Intel began to promote new transformer devices, to which this blog post is dedicated.
Transformer vs. Laptop: Main Differences
The main difference between a transformer and a traditional laptop is the ability to turn it into a tablet. There are laptops with touch screens, but their hinge does not allow you to flip the lid 360 degrees and rotate around its axis. The transformer has no problem with it. In laptop mode, everything is standard, including keyboard and mouse input and control.
You can work with a digital pen in tablet mode and touch control. The popularity of transformers is growing, especially with the appearance of the Lenovo Yoga series and the ZenBook Flip series from ASUS. These devices appeal to users because they are:
✔️ Have a pretty good battery life;
✔️ Not burdened with wired accessories. The touchscreen is even more convenient than the mouse.
Also among the advantages, we should mention a variety of designs. For example, transformers today are available in three main variants:
- Convertible: Have a 360-degree hinge that allows the screen to rotate and fold back, effectively transforming the laptop into a tablet.
- Detachable: Have a tablet-like display that can be detached from the keyboard to be used as a standalone tablet.
- Hybrid 2-in-1 Laptops: Combine the other two types, featuring a detachable keyboard and a 360-degree hinge.
Characteristics of Tablet Laptops
The size of 2-in-1 laptops outwardly does not give you an idea of what these devices are capable of. What impresses such small and thin computers? Let’s take a look at their features:
- The Touchscreen display ranges from 10 to 15 inches. Most laptop transformers use screens made of IPS technology which gives them impressive image quality. As a rule, a resolution of 1920×1080 pixels is used.
- Processors from Intel have become an integral part of such devices. Rarely do manufacturers use AMD processors.
- Memory. The increase in the case allows SSD solid-state drives, positively affecting the device’s speed. Some models also have HDD storage for storing photo/video content or games.
- Video card. In most cases, the laptop transformer does not require high graphics performance. It is the main reason many devices are equipped with integrated graphics cards. The built-in graphics processor power will be enough for surfing the Internet or typing. But more expensive and versatile models have robust graphics solutions from NVIDIA.
- RAM. It is a minimum of 8 GB of RAM. Even most budget laptop tablets have this amount of memory, rarely 4 GB or less. In the flagship models, put 16 GB or more. But 8 GB remains the best option for the average user.
Manufacturers of 2-in-1 Laptops
Over time, most companies producing traditional laptops began to make more technological devices. As a result, laptop-tablet became a full-fledged part of many manufacturers’ products. Let’s look at successful models from well-known companies:
- Lenovo Yoga. This model many years ago became the hallmark of the Chinese manufacturer. Through a competent approach to marketing around the new product, Lenovo has achieved popularization of its device and tablet laptops in particular. The model is famous for its build quality, good 15.6-inch screen, and battery life.
- Microsoft Surface Book. A representative of the category of flagships, which has impressive hardware specifications, as well as an incredible 4K display.
- Asus ZenBook Flip. A good option when it comes to the price/quality ratio. Processor 4 GHz, a good screen, and a large amount of RAM.
- HP Envy. The right choice if you want a high-performance laptop with a sleek design and advanced features. However, they may not be the best choice for budget-conscious consumers or those who value upgradability and customer support. But fortunately, the last drawback can be corrected with the help of experts from consulting service Howly. So if you like this device, do not hesitate to buy it because you can always get HP laptops tech support on the Howly website.
Two Sides of the Coin
Everything in this world has both positive and negative sides. And laptop transformers are no exception. In the previous paragraphs, we briefly mentioned their advantages and disadvantages in a general context, and now we go to the specifics. The table below describes the main pros and cons of 2-in-1 laptops, which will help you decide whether you need such a device.
|✔️ Versatility: 2-in-1 laptops can be used as traditional laptops for productivity tasks, such as typing, and can easily be converted into tablets for reading, streaming, and other leisure activities.
|❌ Price: Generally more expensive than traditional laptops.
|✔️ Portability: They are generally lightweight and compact, making them easy to carry around and use.
|❌ Performance: Due to their thin and lightweight design, such laptops may have a different level of performance than traditional laptops, especially when it comes to heavy-duty tasks such as gaming or video editing.
|✔️ Touchscreen: Most devices come with a touchscreen, which provides an intuitive and user-friendly interface. They are handy for tasks that require touch input, such as drawing or graphic design.
|❌ Durability: The hinge mechanism that allows the laptop to convert into a tablet can be prone to wear and tear over time, potentially leading to issues with durability.
|✔️ Battery life: Generally have good battery life, allowing you to work or play for extended periods without recharge.
|❌ Smaller screen size: Tend to have smaller screens than traditional laptops, which may be less suitable for specific tasks such as video editing or programming.
|✔️ Stylus support: Have a stylus, allowing precise and accurate input when drawing or taking notes.
|❌ Limited upgradability: It may be difficult to replace or upgrade specific components such as RAM or storage.
Overall, 2-in-1 laptops are a good choice if you are looking for a versatile and portable device that can be used for both productivity and leisure tasks. However, there may be better choices for those requiring high performance or tight budgets. That is, it all depends on your objectives.