Lenovo has quietly slipped out a convertible Chromebook that operates in four modes: “laptop, tablet, tent and stand”.
Lenovo-watchers might recognise the quote above as the descriptor Lenovo uses for its Yoga range of laptops that, thanks to a cunning hinge, can fold so the screen sits on the machine's back and behaves like a tablet computer.
Other manufacturers have released Chromebooks with touch screens but Vulture South's researches suggests this is the first Chromebook to offer 'slab mode.
The machine in question is the ThinkPad Yoga 11e Chromebook, companion to the new ThinkPad 11e Chromebook, ThinkPad 11e Yoga and ThinkPad 11e. The latter two machines run Windows and the ThinkPad 11e Chromebook is a conventional Google-powered clamshell-with-keyboard.
All four models have been “ruggedized for classroom performance” with “ rubber bumpers, reinforced ports, and stronger hinges … included to protect the system from the hustle and bustle of the classroom.” The 11.6-inch HD Land are aimed at the education market. As their name implies, all possess an 11.6 inch screen.
Lenovo announced the devices at a US education technology conference earlier this week and says prices for the Chromebooks start at $US349, and $449 for the Windows-powered machines. Sales will commence “this [northern] Spring through partners and on the vendor's site. Whether the latter will allow students of life, as opposed to school students, to get their hands on the convertible Chromebook is not clear. ®