Review of the Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet 2

Lenovo’s influential laptop designs are legendary. Despite being, in most cases, re-branded IBM computers, there was a time when the Lenovo laptop was the only model to be certified for use in outer space (I’m not joking). The Lenovo ThinkPad 2 tablet is hoping to take this tradition of quality merchandise and trusted branding into the world of the tablet PC. In the process, Lenovo are hoping to exercise the demons awakened by this tablet’s predecessor…

Yes, the original Thinkpad was a bit crap. It wasn’t stunningly awful, but it certainly wasn’t anyone’s tablet of the year. Why not? Well, for starters the battery life was shorter than Mini-Me’s understudy. Secondly, the general operation of the computer was slower than Wayne Rooney’s Sudoku record. Thirdly, Android doesn’t really do that many ‘pen friendly’ apps.

So, how is this new version different? Let’s find out…

THE SPECS

The first major difference between the Thinkpad 1 and the latest model is the OS. The original model ran Android, but not especially well. This new version runs Windows 8 and is, dare I say it, much better for it. Lenovo principally make computers for Windows, so having them back on home territory can only be a good thing.

The second thing you’re likely to notice is that the bodywork has been completely overhauled. This new ThinkPad now comes complete with a rubberised finish that feels comfortable and pleasing to touch, a vastly improved screen (1366 x 768, nicer, but still not HD) and a cute little keyboard that is fantastic, both to look at and to use.

The ThinkPad 2 is lighter than the older model (from 1.58lbs to 1.3 lbs) and you get about 8 hours of battery life.

THE PRICE

Available at around £430, this is actually one of the cheaper Windows 8 tablets around. It’s a bit pricier than other hybrids, of course, but is probably worth the extra money in the long run. If you really want Windows 8 on your tablet, but you don’t want to pay the funny money, this one could be a decent choice.

NOTE: Sadly, the keypad itself will set you back another £80, bringing the total up about £510. This is still a decent price compared to some of the others out there, however.

THE PERFORMANCE

This tablet performs pretty well. The processing speed is suitably fast and the general look and feel of the tablet implies comfort, durability and professionalism. It handles the Internet with no problems at all and the apps also work well without hiccups.

One minor annoyance is the pen. That stylus just doesn’t want to come out of its friggin’ holster. Ever. It’s actually embarrassing when you’re in public and struggling to pull the f****r out.

As a negative point, I wouldn’t say that there was anything especially exciting about this tablet. It works fine; it’s not the fastest tablet in the West, nor is it the most energy efficient model ever. It is neither great value nor a ripoff and it runs Windows 8, which is a plus or a minus, depending on your perspective.

It is, however, miles better than the previous model. It represents a genuinely huge improvement on the ThinkPad 1.

THE VERDICT

Generally speaking, I liked this tablet. I don’t know if it will feature on anybody’s ‘best of the year’ lists, as I said of its predecessor, but that doesn’t make the ThinkPad 2 a bad tablet.

All in all, it’s just a standard Windows 8 tablet. Don’t expect a dazzling Retina display, don’t expect the hardware of the Microsoft Surface, don’t expect the brand pull of some of the other tablets out there and don’t expect a major bargain. What you see is a nicely made, reliable tablet at a reasonable price.

And what you see is ultimately what you’ll get. 

Tesco Hudl Tablet

Hudl’ is not actually a word, at least, not in any language that I know of. I think Tesco only named it that so they could cannily abbreviate their ‘Hudl User Group’ to HUG (no, really). Oh yes, while we’re on the subject, you did indeed read that first part right; this is a tablet PC manufactured by Tesco.

Tesco.

OK.

What next? Missile defence systems designed by Dominos Pizza? Lunar Landing Module’s supplied by ASDA? (Just expect them either far too early or far too late), mobile smartphones designed by my local fish n chip shop? Continue reading »

Review: Razer Edge Pro tablet—insane performance that’s completely impractical

This is year that microsoft window 8 makes its mark within the tablet market. With the popular nokia tablet pc, the microsoft surface 2 plus a few others (counting the Razer Edge Pro, that’s basically what this short article is all about). We’ll be seeing several more come out before next christmas. The Razer Edge Pro is a little disappointing in comparison to everything else that is out on the market (apple ipad, asus nexus 7) but read to the end to find out the final assesment of this pc tablet. Continue reading »

What’s Better, a Tablet or a Laptop?

This is going to be a ‘damned if you do, damned if you don’t’ type thing. The debate you’re dragging me into here, is actually a long and storied one (with both sides making good points along the way). So here goes…

Basically, it all depends on what you need the device in question to do.

The tablet PC has not supplanted the laptop (not yet anyway) and, in fact, the average tablet cannot hope to contain the amount of information that can be stored in a laptop. Also, unless you are an ‘Angry Birds’ fanatic, never, ever think of a tablet as a gaming device. Continue reading »

Who Invented the Tablet PC?

That’s actually quite tough to pinpoint. Computer scientist Alan Kay first came up with a concept (and then a prototype) for what he called a ‘Dynabook’ in 1968. Depending on which version you look at, the Dynabook concept can be viewed as a prototype tablet PC (as well as a direct ancestor of the laptop).

 

In science fiction, tablet-like devices can be seen in ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ as well as ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation’. While in comics, Jack Kirby’s ‘Motherboxes’ (as featured in the 1970’s ‘New Gods’ series) can be considered to be ‘super-tablets’ by any other name. So the idea for the tablet was firmly entrenched in fiction and popular culture long before the iPad was even a glint in Steve Jobs’ eye.  Continue reading »

What does jailbreak an ipad mean

Introduced in 2010, Apple’s iPad has been met with generally favourable reviews and sales, becoming far and away the most popular tablet computer on the world market. Sort of a ‘halfway house’ between and iPhone and Macbook, the iPad is an impressive gadget indeed. It runs a great many programs, and comes with up to 64GB of memory, not bad for a thing not much fatter than a short novel (and not much bigger, either). In fact, it has a great many appealing features.  Continue reading »

Tablets set to outsell PCs by the end of the year

Latest news – The writing was on the wall the very first time Steve Jobs stood up on that stage in 2010 and showed the world the way forward for computing. The tablet has altered just how we participate in games, compose letters and work away from the office, So this news story about a drop of 13% in sales of laptops and a rise of sevenpercent in sales of tablets, isn’t surprising three years on. This is only going to improve for that little tablet pc with apple continuously innovating, microsoft starting to move into the industry with their windows 8 tablet pc’s and google’s android spreading out its market share quicker than anyone else, it’s difficult to see how the laptop or maybe the desktop can compete. Continue reading »

Which one is bestNetbook, Tablet or Laptop? can anyone decide?

This really depends on what you wish out of the PC.

All told, however, I am going to have to say a laptop might be still the very best all-rounder, though I can’t say how long it will stay that way.

As I respond to this question, there is a little red netbook sitting in my kitchen near the microwave, I use it to view internet programs while I am baking or washing up (Kevin Smith’s ‘Fatman on Batman’ podcast is my present favorite). I have used a netbook for a couple of years now and I’ve found it to be Okay. The problem using the netbook is it tends being slow and not have a huge amount of memory or processing muscle. Netbooks were designed as bargin, portable alternatives to laptops and, in that sense, they’ve done fine. Continue reading »

Can windows 8 ever compete with iOS or Android?

Editorial –  This post from the website ‘the verge’ has posed the query, why has windows 8, designed for that new mobile market, not taken off. Many of the bigger suppliers haven’t embraced the new Operating system like they were expected to, and now many weeks later we are still waiting for that first notable tablet using the windows 8 Operating system.

The Windows 8 operating system debuted on October 26th, six months ago today. Intended as the savior of a flagging PC industry, Microsoft’s latest software is designed specifically for touch-equipped hardware. While Apple continues to increase its iPad shipments year-on-year, Microsoft and its OEMs are fresh out the gate with an operating system that tries to marry a keyboard and mouse-driven UI to a modern touch-enabled interface. Microsoft provided some early signs of Windows 8’s sales performance, but recently it has been rather quiet. How well is the big Windows 8 gamble paying off? Continue reading »