For the last decade, the laptop has been the punching bag of new mobile computing devices such as the smartphone and the tablet. As smartphones became more powerful, they also became thinner and had bigger screens. This paved the way to more tasks being offloaded from laptops to phones which caused the relevance of laptops to lessen over time. The laptop was slowly being relegated to the work unit of people with demanding tasks such as programming, editing (but phones are catching up), and design. Today though, the laptop is starting to finally make a stand.
Lenovo launched a variety of devices at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES 2020) in Las Vegas. There was your typical jacked up gaming laptop and your thin productivity workhorse devices. There was a smart frame and smart home hub for the house. They even introduced a full suite of new corporate/enterprise laptop offerings. What stole the show though was the Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Fold, the world’s first laptop with a foldable screen. This device had one ambition that 99% of other laptops didn’t have — it was designed to steal “screen time” from your smartphone and tablet.
How Can a Folding Screen Laptop Take on the Smartphone?
Right now, the chances of a laptop replacing a smartphone is almost close to zero. There are just so many use cases unique to the smartphone right now. However there is a window of opportunity as we enter the 5G era, e-sims become more popular, and more communications transition to video and voice assistants vs call/text/typing.
What the Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Fold do credibly for now is it can steal back screen time and market share from the tablet category. There are a lot of executives and entrepreneurs who use iPads to go about their daily tasks. They don’t need heavy lifting with laptops because they mostly do communications (e-mail, video calls). The novelty, versatility, and elegance of the Thinkpad X1 Fold stands a good chance of appealing to that market segment.
Ultimately the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold will not appeal to everyone today and that’s okay. Lenovo has a diverse product line-up including laptops for gamers, digital creators, and heavy lifters (programmers, designers, etc). The X1 Fold is a new category, meant to be a bold step into the future of mobile computing. It’s a peek into the future where you actually just need one device with you – foldable screen that can be a sleek phone, a gorgeous tablet, and a powerful PC, all rolled into one.
The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold is set to launch in the middle of 2020. There’s no confirmed pricing yet but there’s a lot of talk going around that it will retail for over $2,000 (P100,000).
Make sure to stay tuned here to Unbox.ph for more updates on the on-going CES 2020 in Las Vegas, US.