Thursday, January 14, 2010

Lenovo IdeaPad U1 Hybrid

I am constantly surprised that there are not more reconfigurable (on the fly) computers and am happy that someone is giving it a go. I just wish they had gone futher.

Start with a laptop in a docking station, then take the laptop part with you, then just take the screen. Seems logical and like a good idea.

Where I think they fell down in execution is that there are two separate computer systems that share URLs. Why have two computer systems? With processors that can slow themselves down and even shutdown cores, why make two different computers? Lenovo could have just packed the bottom/keyboard with an optical drive, more ports and a huge battery.

The power use could be tailored to how it is connected. In a docking station, run at full power! Just has the keyboard and extra battery, run at some middle of the road performance. Just the screen, then it could be configured to run a more power saving setup.

Add to that multi-mode screens (sure, the Pixel Qi is the only one now, but I expect some kind of OLED/Digital Ink hybrid to come along soon) and solid state drives and I think a product could be made that could be your desktop/laptop/tablet. As they are all the same machine, a user doesn't have to worry about syncing data between computers.

Maybe the fact that Lenovo's Hybrid uses two different operating systems is a clue to a possible issue? The main computer runs Windows, while the screen runs Linux.

Maybe Lenovo thinks that a purely Linux laptop would not sell, but that Windows7 is not tunable enough for low power to make the tablet portion work well.

Let me know what you think below.

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