Lenovo’s Yoga Book C930 kills the keyboard for an E-Ink touchscreen
When was the last time you saw a laptop that was really fundamentally different?
The Yoga Book C9 30 from Lenovo is certainly.
Will you like those differences?
Well, that's up for debate.
It starts with a quick double knock on the lid to pop it open.
It's a pretty simple party trick, but everyone I showed it to was impressed.
Once you open the lid, you'll find one standard LCD touchscreen, and in the place of a keyboard, an second E Ink touchscreen.
No physical keys, no touchpad.
So, how do you type on this thing?
Think on the E ink display, a keyboard pops up on demand complete with a built in touchpad.
There are a few different keyboard layout and design options including one with a touchpad appears and disappears as needed giving you room for larger keys.
You can also turn on fake keyboard clacking sounds and some haptic feedback.
But I'm gonna be honest, it's really nothing at all like typing on a real keyboard.
After some warming up, I actually got pretty good at using the on-screen keyboard, but the touchpad is tougher to use.
It's way too easy to slide off it and start hitting the spacebar instead.
What else can you do with an e-ink screen?
Well, a stylus lets you sketch or take notes, which then can be copied on to any other Windows app.
And you can flip it around into tablet mode and turn off the LCD making this a giant e-ink reader, which should keep the battery going for days and days.
But if you're thinking of using the Yoga Book as a super premium Kindle reader, well, that's where we run into the biggest roadblock.
At least for now, the E Ink display only reads PDF files.
I asked Lenovo if Kindle support was coming, and they were noncommittal, but said, Software and future updates may be coming sometime next year.
For now, I genuinely enjoy testing this very inventive laptop, which dared to break some norms in the search for something new and unique.
But as a whole, the E Ink keyboard just won't work for most typists, and the lack of Kindle support undercuts what could be the systems biggest selling point.
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