For Lenovo, CES time is usually a time to show off its latest ThinkPad products. CES 2020 is no different, as Lenovo announced a slew of devices before the annual trade show officially kicks off. Among the announcements are three standouts: the ThinkPad X1 Carbon, ThinkPad X1 Yoga, and the ThinkPad TrackPoint Keyboard II.
Get Yourself a Laptop with Carbon Fiber
Our first stop on the Lenovo announcement tour is the eighth-generation ThinkPad X1 Carbon. The 14-inch laptop isn’t too dissimilar from its predecessor in terms of looks, but that’s not a bad thing. We liked the carbon fiber weave on the seventh-generation ThinkPad X1 Carbon, so it’s good to see it make a return on the updated model.
The carbon fiber weave isn’t just here for show, as the material helps the ThinkPad X1 Carbon weigh less than 2.5 pounds. Don’t let the light weight fool you—thanks to the MIL-SPEC testing, the laptop can take some physical abuse and still end up working fine.
The good news is Lenovo didn’t sacrifice specs for looks. You have your choice of the Intel Core i5 or i7 processor. RAM and the SSD top out at a healthy 16 GB and 2 TB, respectively. The 51 Wh battery should be enough for up to 18.5 hours of use. Then we get to the star of the show: the 14-inch panel. New this year is the 1080p touch panel with 500 nits of brightness and Lenovo’s PrivacyGuard technology, which makes content only visible to those directly looking at the display. If you need more pixels, the top-end display option features a UHD panel, support for HDR, and 500 nits of brightness.
The new ThinkPad X1 Carbon will be available sometime in 2020 and start at $1,499.
Aluminum Can Still Look Nice
Aluminum laptops are as common as a cold, but that doesn’t mean they can’t look great. Take the fifth-generation ThinkPad X1 Yoga, which has an all-aluminum body and a sturdy build as a result. The laptop underwent the same MIL-SPEC testing as the new ThinkPad X1 Carbon, so don’t worry about tossing it into your bag with reckless abandon.
As the name implies, the ThinkPad X1 Yoga isn’t a traditional laptop. The hinge design means you can use the laptop as a 14-inch tablet, though you’ll probably want to use two hands to comfortably use it. The 2.9-pound weight is light for a laptop, but very heavy for a tablet. If you want to rest your hands, you can prop the ThinkPad X1 Yoga on a table with the display facing you.
Thankfully, the specs don’t take a backseat to the looks. The ThinkPad X1 Yoga is available with the Intel Core i5 or i7 processor, 8 or 16 GB of RAM, and up to a 2 TB SSD. You can outfit the laptop with LTE, with a fingerprint scanner next to the trackpad. The battery should provide up to 15 hours of use.
Turning to the display, the ThinkPad X1 Yoga features four display options. New this year is the 1080p panel with 500 nits of brightness and Lenovo’s PrivacyGuard technology. You can get the display without PrivacyGuard, though brightness goes down to 400 nits. As with the ThinkPad X1 Carbon, the top option is the IPS panel with UHD resolution, HDR support, and 500 nits of brightness.
The new ThinkPad X1 Yoga will be available sometime in 2020 and start at $1,599.
Seven Years in the Making
Seven years. It’s been seven years since Lenovo announced the original Bluetooth-enabled ThinkPad TrackPoint Keyboard. The time gap is why we’re taken by surprise with the ThinkPad TrackPoint Keyboard II, though it also allowed for several modern amenities.
The ThinkPad TrackPoint Keyboard II connects wirelessly and lets you quickly switch between two connected devices. Wireless support is available through Bluetooth 5 and the included USB adapter. The battery is rated for up to two months of use, but a 15-minute charge through the USB-C port allows for up to one week of use.
New features are nice and all, but there’s something comforting about keeping things how they were. The ThinkPad TrackPoint Keyboard II’s layout is the exact same as the original. That means the beloved TrackPoint is front and center between the G, H, and B keys. According to Lenovo, the keyboard features the same keycaps, typing distance, actuation, scissor switches, and feedback as the keyboards on the company’s ThinkPad laptops.
The ThinkPad TrackPoint Keyboard II will be available in May for $99.99.