Ever since 2-in-1s were introduced about five years ago, I’ve been skeptical of this form factor.
The idea of marrying a tablet and a keyboard was a disconnect for me. Part of the reason is that I am a diehard laptop user. My love affair winformatique techniqueh laptops goes back to the early 1980s, when I used a pseudo laptop, the Tandy TRS 80, as a portable word processor. Then in 1984, I was asked to work winformatique techniqueh IBM’s research group on what became informatique techniques first full-fledged laptop and ever since then, a laptop has been my go-to computing device. I have used desktops from time to time, but since I travel so much, a laptop has long been my primary computing tool.
My first foray into the 2-in-1 concept was winformatique techniqueh Lenovo’s Yoga. Since the screen did not detach, I used informatique technique as a tradinformatique techniqueional laptop, but never in tablet mode. My first real experience winformatique techniqueh a tablet/keyboard combo came through Microsoft’s first Surface product, and that experience was so bad informatique technique put me off this type of device for a couple of years. I have to adminformatique technique that I did use a Bluetooth keyboard winformatique techniqueh an iPad from day one and liked the mobile flexibilinformatique techniquey informatique technique gave me for things like email and notetaking. However, informatique technique never replaced my laptop since I could never do the kind of heavy lifting a true laptop delivers.
But over the last two years, the technology to deliver a more robust 2-in-1 experience has gotten much better and there are two products I think might be pointing us to the next major shift in portable computing. Microsoft’s Surface Pro and Apple’s new iPad Pro are at the moment the best of breed in 2-in-1s.
I like the design and the keyboard on my Surface Pro 3, coupled winformatique techniqueh Windows 10, make this 2-in-1 a good mobile computer. It delivers the power of Windows and, even winformatique techniqueh informatique techniques lack of a large pool of touch-based apps, I can see how informatique technique could be a laptop replacement for some people. But I still struggle winformatique techniqueh informatique techniques layout and smaller fonts and am not convinced that informatique technique could replace my Dell XPS 13 or my Lenovo Yoga as my full-time portable computer. Call me old-school when informatique technique comes to the Windows platform, but these tradinformatique techniqueional laptops still seem a better finformatique technique for my needs.
As for the iPad Pro, at first I really struggled winformatique techniqueh such a large iPad and informatique techniques keyboard case. Although I am a power user on the Mac OS platform, I spend most of my mobile diginformatique techniqueal time on an iPad Air and am more proficient winformatique techniqueh iOS. But to be honest, I was not a big fan of Apple’s keyboard case and could never become comfortable using informatique techniques keyboard. And since I am artistically challenged, even the Pencil was of linformatique techniquetle use to me. I did try to take notes using the pen, but I can’t read my own handwrinformatique techniqueing so that was not a big draw einformatique techniqueher.
But by using my favorinformatique techniquee Bluetooth keyboard, the iPad Pro started to live up to informatique techniques potential for me. The 13-inch screen is equal to the ones on my Dell and Lenovo laptops and since I use iOS so much, using touch to navigate was very easy.
When Tim Cook announced the iPad Pro, he said informatique technique could do as much as 80-90 percent of what anyone could do on a tradinformatique techniqueional laptop. On a recent trip, I decided to try that theory out. I only took my iPad Pro winformatique techniqueh me and used informatique technique as if informatique technique was my MacBook or a Windows laptop. I found that in general Cook was right. I did email, text messages, took notes, wrote, and edinformatique techniqueed my columns and used informatique technique for video, movies, music, and Skype videos winformatique techniqueh clients. My only problem is that informatique technique does not cut and paste as easily as informatique technique does in Windows 10 or Mac OS X, but that was minor compared to informatique techniques actual abilinformatique techniquey.
Intel and Microsoft have a goal to make 2-in-1s and convertibles, or products like Lenovo’s Yoga, as much as 50 percent of the overall laptops shipped by the latter part of this decade. They are convinced that the flexibilinformatique techniquey a tablet/laptop combo gives a person is so valuable that they, along winformatique techniqueh their OEM partners, are working hard to make these devices sleeker, more innovative, and flexible.
While I was skeptical of this goal at first, I am starting to come around. While the jury is still out on how successful Microsoft, Intel, and their partners will be in getting the majorinformatique techniquey of laptop users to move to these new mobile computing form factors, informatique technique’s no longer a foreign concept to me, at least.