Although Lenovo isn’t the only notebook manufacturer trying to make waves with a 2-in-1 Chromebook, the new Lenovo Flex 11 might be just enough to get consumers excited about Chromebooks.
Part Laptop, Part Tablet, All Chromebook
Its 360-degree hinge and 11.6-inch multi-touch display gives users the flexibility to shift between the four modes (watch, tent, laptop, and tablet) made popular by Lenovo’s Yoga line of 2-in-1 devices. This means owners can stream multiple episodes of a show on Netflix using tent mode, switch to laptop mode to type a lengthy email using the built-in QWERTY keyboard, then flip the device into a tablet and use the touchscreen to play a game.
The Flex 11 might also prove to be one of the more durable Chromebooks on the market. The device features a non-slip texture to improve grip, but it’s also drop resistant and can withstand falls of up to 75cm (2.4 feet). Its ports are reinforced, its touchpad is sealed to protect against accidental spills, and its water-resistant keyboard uses internal channels beneath the keyboard to divert liquid away from sensitive components. Lenovo engineered the Flex 11 to handle up to 330 ml – about 1 cup – of liquid without damage.
Lenovo Flex 11 Hardware and Battery Life
The Lenovo Flex 11 is powered by a 2.10 GHz Quad Core ARM processor with 4GB of LPDDR3 RAM, which is more than enough to deliver a good experience with Chrome apps from the Chrome Web Store, and soon, Android apps from the Google Play Store.
Combine the massive library of Chrome and Android apps with a device that doubles as both a laptop and tablet along with USB Type-C connectivity and what Lenovo claims is “up to 10-hour battery life.” The Flex 11 packs enough ports to connect to other devices in your home or office, including HDMI, USB 3.0, a mic/audio jack and an SD card slot. It also includes a USB Type-C port for charging the Flex 11 itself or your peripherals, and provides video and high-speed data transfers. Owners will be able to expand the included 32GB of built-in storage using the previously-mentioned SD card slot if they don’t want to keep their files stored in the cloud.
The Flex 11’s 11.6-inch HD (1366 x 768, 250 nit) multi-touch display supports 10-finger touch screen recognition and features IPS technology with wide viewing angles as well as a new anti-glare finish to reduce eye strain. The editors here at Notebook Review are particularly happy about that last part since most Chromebooks are plagued by excessively glossy screens.
Lenovo Flex 11 Pricing & Availability
The Lenovo Flex 11 Chromebook starts at $279 (USD) and is available beginning April 2017. The Lenovo website has more information about the Flex 11 and we’ll have a full review as soon as possible.