Why should smartphones and smartwatches have all the fun? IFA 2014 has been host to a number of new PCs and tablets. Here are a few of our favorites thus far.
We'll be updating this gallery as new models are unveiled, so be sure to check back later.
Lenovo Tab S8
Lenovo is stepping up its tablet game with a new cheap -- but sleek -- 8-inch addition to its lineup. The Tab S8 starts at only $200 and houses a decent list of midrange specs, including an 8-megapixel rear camera and Dolby-powered speakers.
On the heels of the Memo Pad 8 comes the smaller 7-inch model. Not to be outdone by its larger counterpart, the Asus Memo Pad 7 features a more Nokia Lumia-inspired design that reminded our own Richard Trenholm of a clutch bag. The 7-inch Asus will go on sale in September in the UK, while availability for other countries has yet to be announced.
Sony's first 8-inch slate is making a splash in the tablet scene. The Xperia Z3 is a more portable version of the 10-inch Xperia Z2 tablet that still offers a sleek waterproof build. There's no information on pricing, but it's set to hit stores in October.
Toshiba released an ultra-portable Windows 8.1 touting tablets. Standing at 7 inches tall, the Encore Mini is a no-frills slate with budget price to match. For a paltry $120 (£100 in the UK) students and budget conscious shoppers can easily take the power of full Windows on the go.
The Acer Aspire Switch's 11.6-inch display offers a 1080p IPS display that features Corning Gorilla Glass 3 and an anti-fingerprint coating. But why is it called the Switch? Great question. When detached from its keyboard base it can either face the keyboard, or turn away from it.
That leaves room for using the device in one of four modes: as a standard notebook, as a standalone tablet when removed from the keyboard, in presentation mode when the the screen is facing outward, and in "tent" mode, akin to the Lenovo Yoga series. The Acer Aspire Switch 11 series will be available in October, starting from $399 (roughly £242/AU$427) with wider pricing yet to be confirmed.
The Acer Aspire R13 features a "Ferris wheel" hinged design, akin to the Dell XPS 12. That spinning hinge feels nice and sturdy, and Acer claims you can use the device in six different modes. The R 13 also offers Dolby Digital Plus Home Theatre audio, which promises to maintain the correct orientation for the speaker's audio channels, no matter what orientation the screen is in.
The R13 can also be configured with some high-end specs, including up to 8GB of RAM, an Intel Core i7 CPU, a 2,560-by-1,440-pixel resolution display, and up to a 1TB SSD in RAID 0. It'll be available in the US from October from $900 (which converts to about £550 and AU$960), and in Europe from November from €900 (converted, about $1,200, £720, and AU$1,265). It'll also be available in Asia, though pricing for there hasn't been confirmed.
The 17.3-inch Lenovo Y70 touch is all about gaming. It pairs current-gen discrete graphics from Nvidia with a built-in subwoofer and a 1080p display. It weighs about 7.5 pounds but cuts a slim figure. It's look especially fierce too, sporting Lenovo's classic red-and-black motif.
Toshiba's Chromebook 2 has shed some weight, but still manages to pack a 13.3-inch display -- there'll be an entry level model with a 1,366-by-768-pixel resolution vertsion, as well as a premium model with a 1080p display. This will be paired with an Intel Celeron processor, 2GB or 4GB of RAM, and 16GB of storage.
Prices will start at $250 to $330 (£200 to £250), and it'll be available in the US on October 5. There's still no word on pricing and availability elsewhere, but that converts to between AU$270 and AU$360 for Australia.
Tabletop PCs didn't exactly take the consumer market by storm, but you can't fault Lenovo for taking another swing at the segment. The Horizon 2s weighs 5.6 pounds and has a 19.5-inch 1080p display. It'll support up to Intel Core i7 processors with 500GB of hard drive space, and the built-in battery should run for up to 2.5 hours -- plenty of time to change rooms. It'll be available later in September, starting at $949.
One of the nicer-looking and better-performing Chrome OS systems, the 13-inch Acer Chromebook adds some zip by ditching Intel for an Nvidia Tegra K1 processor. The 13.3-inch display offers a 1080p display -- a rarity amongst Chromebooks -- and still manages to cost just $300 (£220 in the UK, with no Australian availability announced yet). The Tegra K1 processor did run into some hiccups with Chrome apps, and there's only 16GB of storage, so you're going to need to rely on the pair of USB 3.0 ports if you need to deal with lots of files.
Asus's EeePCs were once the cream of the netbook crop, but were largely supplanted by tablets and falling prices on proper laptops. The X205 harkens back to those budget-PC days. It has an 11.6-inch display and weighs just over two pounds, and will cost £200 in the UK and €200 in the rest of Europe -- about $265 or AU$280, though availability hasn't been confirmed. The machine offers a pair of USB 2.0 ports, a microSD slot, and a Micro-HDMI port, and will offer either 32GB or 64GB. There's no touchscreen however, which might limit its appeal as a Windows 8.1 machine.
Toshiba calls the Satellite CL10-B a "cloud companion," but it might be best to think of it as a Chromebook that runs Windows 8.1 instead. The 11.6-inch display has a 1,366-by-768-pixel resolution, and the notebook has a meager 32GB of onboard storage. You're expected to rely on cloud storage, and provided with 100GB of storage space on Microsoft's OneDrive -- yours free for two years. More storage options will come care of a USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 port, and an SD card slot. It should be available before the end of the year, and set to cost £200 in the UK and €260 in Europe -- release dates and details on global availability have yet to be announced.
The HP Envy x2 takes a few design cues from Microsoft's Surface Pro 3, offering a detachable Bluetooth keyboard and a kickstand to keep the display standing upright. It comes in 13.3- and 15.6-inch sizes, and also offers front-facing stereo speakers, powered by Beats. There's an Intel Core M processor under the hood too, which should provide the hybrid laptop a fair bit of oomph when it arrives later this year: October 29 for the $1,050 13.3-inch model, and November 5 for the $950 15.6-inch version.
The Edge 15's hinge can bend back 300 degrees, allowing you to put it into what Lenovo calls "Kiosk mode," showing off its 15.6-inch, 1080p touchscreen. Unlike many of the hybrids we've seen at IFA, this $899 laptop (about £545 or AU$960) is a premium machine. It'll offer Core i5 or Core i7 processors, up to a 1TB HDD or 256 SSD, and 8GB of RAM. You can also opt for discrete Nvidia graphics in some regions. It'll be available in October in the US, but there's no word on international pricing or a global release.
The ThinkPad Helix has an 11.6-inch, 1080p display, and is powered by an Intel Core M CPU. That processor keeps things slim: the device is completely fanless, and weighs just 1.8-pounds, with battery life estimated at 8 hours. If that's not enough, you can buy a Pro version of the keyboard that offers a more flexible hinge design and 12 hours of battery life. The Helix arrives in the US in October for $999, while to Pro Keyboard will arrive in January of 2015. International pricing and availability hasn't been announced.
This hybrid laptop sports increasingly popular 360-degree hinges, allowing you to flip its 11.6-inch, 1,366-by-768-pixel resolution display back on itself. At 2.8 pounds it's fairly lightweight too, giving you a Windows 8.1-equipped package that functions as laptop and tablet while being fairly easy to tote about. It also offers a full-size HDMI output port, one USB 2.0 and one USB 3.0 port, and an SD card reader. It'll be available in October for about £330 in the UK or €450 in Europe -- US prices and availability haven't been announced.
The 192-core Nvidia Tegra K1 processor feels like a bit much for a Chromebook, but you can likely expect smooth, stutter-free performance while zipping about the internet on the 14-inch HP Chromebook. The machine offers three USB ports, an HDMI port, and a microSD card slot -- there's no word on the onboard storage capacity. There's also contract-free mobile broadband care of T-Mobile in the US and HP DataPass in Europe. It'll be available in the US on October 22, starting at $300.