From traditional laptops to 2-in-1s, Chromebooks have become increasingly diversified over the years in terms of design. The newly-announced Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook hopes to diversify the pool even further with a detachable design.
Thanks to the use of magnets, you can attach and remove the IdeaPad Duet Chromebook’s keyboard with ease. The adjustable kickstand on the back of the device features a 135-degree free-stop hidden hinge, allowing for adjustable viewpoints when using the IdeaPad Duet Chromebook on a table. All of this is to say the device can be a tablet when you don’t want the keyboard and a productivity machine when you do want it.
None of this will be new if you’ve used Microsoft’s Surface Pro or Surface Go devices. However, detachable computers remain a new concept in the Chrome OS space. The only detachable Chromebooks we’ve seen so far are the HP Chromebook x2 and Google Pixel Slate, and the former is seemingly discontinued. It’s nice to see another detachable Chromebook, especially one with a small form factor.
Speaking of portability, the IdeaPad Duet Chromebook has a 10.1-inch display with a 1,920 x 1,200 resolution. It’s ever-so-slightly larger and denser than the Surface Go’s 10-inch display with 1,800 x 1,200 resolution. The IdeaPad Duet Chromebook’s display also boasts 400 nits of brightness and a 70-percent color gamut. The Surface Go was praised for its display quality, so here’s hoping we can say the same about the IdeaPad Duet Chromebook’s display if we get our hands on it.
Of course, display quality won’t matter if the software is junk. As alluded to earlier, the IdeaPad Duet Chromebook runs Chrome OS. The operating system is no longer “just a browser,” as you can now run Android and Linux apps. Also, the presence of a notifications area, dock, and file system make it visually and functionally closer to Windows and MacOS than ever before. That’s not to say Chrome OS is for everyone. You still can’t download programs like you can on Windows and MacOS, and Android apps don’t work amazingly well on Chrome OS. That said, it’s a lightweight alternative to the bigger players.
The Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook will start at $279.99 when it’s available in North America in May. By comparison, the Surface Go starts at a pricier $399. There’s no word yet on availability in other regions.