Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga
Ever since seeing a couple of my co-workers return from the 2011 Microsoft Build conference with their slick looking Samsung Series 7 Slate computers running Windows 8, I've wanted one. Using the smooth scrolling interface-formerly-known-as-metro (does it even have a name any more?) felt great, and I loved the idea of having something slim and super-portable that would work as both a tablet and a light-duty work machine, for a little bit on the go when necessary.
As I've seen mentioned here and there on the interwebs, there does seem to be a real lack of Windows 8 tablets available in retail stores. Regardless, last week I decided it was finally time to buy a tablet. Thanks to stores carrying virtually nothing, I ended up visiting three different stores before finding a device I thought might be worthy. I started at the Microsoft store, assuming they would have the hottest devices to show off (and sell) there, and if the hottest device to me was still the Series 7 Slate, so be it. Much to my dismay, they were no longer carrying the Slate, and nothing else in the store had really replaced that same sort of tablet-focused form factor. Totally disappointed, I went home empty-handed.
The next night I stopped at Fry's on my way home from work. I was relying on the sheer size of that place, hoping that such a cavernous warehouse full of computers (and such) must have several tablets to choose from. I was even more disappointed here. They had only two tablet-like Windows 8 devices, and both of them felt cheap and crappy in my hands. I looked around at a see of other laptops, iPads and Android tablets, and once more went home with a big fat wad of nothing.
On the third night of my search, I went to Best Buy. At this point, I was expecting nothing. Best Buy has never struck me as a place to have much variety, and after striking out the previous two nights, this was really just a long shot which I fully expected to result in nothing. To my delight, I found something I liked! The Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga. It's a sleek little laptop, but you can flip the screen all the way around to fold over backwards, and then use it as a tablet. It's still thin & light enough, and having the laptop mode available meant that I really could do some coding on it when convenient! In my mind's eye, I envision myself dancing in a field of digitized flowers, holding hands with my new IdeaPad Yoga, spinning in loving circles as we happily computed in both tablet mode and laptop mode, seamlessly switching between the two. I wonder if this could even replace what I use my iPad for, and that's some super high praise from a Mac lover like myself!
I'm still having to force myself to use it over my MacBook Pro, as I do prefer the Mac OS to Windows quite a bit... But I'm going to keep at it to see how this whole Windows 8 thing might pan out for me. In fact, this very blog post is currently being typed on my Yoga in laptop mode. Jury's out, ladies and gents!
Jon Bachelor: This geek goes all the way to 11.