We nonetheless see loads of Chromebooks geared toward shoppers and school rooms, however subtle fashions for enterprise are more and more fashionable. Lenovo’s ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook (begins at $584; $859 as examined) may very well be the fanciest but. This 13.3-inch convertible lives as much as the ThinkPad identify with a TrackPoint pointing stick within the keyboard and MIL-STD 810G certification towards highway hazards like shock, vibration, and temperature and humidity extremes. It’s even accessible with a 4K OLED show. It is not low cost, but it surely’s additionally not affected by the deadly sticker shock that its rival the HP Elite c1030 Chromebook Enterprise is, and it is general spectacular sufficient to say an Editors’ Alternative award for enterprise Chromebooks. Consider it as a premium workplace 2-in-1 that occurs to run Chrome OS as a substitute of Home windows.
Abyss Blue, Not Matte Black
The ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook additionally occurs to have an AMD as a substitute of Intel CPU. (Final fall, AMD launched a sequence of 5 Ryzen and Athlon “C-series” processors, specifically designed to be used in Chromebooks.) A $584 lowball system sports activities a dual-core Athlon Gold 3150C chip, a skimpy 4GB of RAM, and a worse (even double-size could be skimpy) 32GB of eMMC flash storage. Our $859 assessment unit steps as much as a quad-core, 2.1GHz Ryzen 5 3500C processor with Radeon Vega built-in graphics, 8GB of reminiscence, and a beneficiant 256GB PCI Categorical-based solid-state drive. The 2 fashions share a full HD (1,920-by-1,080-pixel) IPS contact display with 300 nits of brightness.
Our take a look at machine additionally has a fingerprint reader, a Common Stylus Initiative pen that stashes in a slot on the entrance edge, and two cameras. The primary cam is a webcam with a privateness shutter, centered above the show; the second is a 5-megapixel world-facing digital camera above the keyboard, appropriate for taking snapshots whereas holding the Yoga in pill mode. A step up from our take a look at mannequin, the 4K OLED model is a greater worth at $968; it has not solely a extra good, higher-resolution display, but additionally a quicker (Ryzen 7 3700C) processor and 16GB of RAM.
Completed in a very deep-navy metallic blue as a substitute of the same old ThinkPad black, the Lenovo’s aluminum chassis measures 0.61 by 12.1 by 8.4 inches and weighs 3.3 kilos, kind of matching its 13.3-inch convertible rival the Dell Latitude 5300 2-in-1 Chromebook Enterprise (0.76 by 12 by 8.2 inches, 3.2 kilos). The HP Elite c1030 has a 13.5-inch show with a squarer 3:2 moderately than 16:9 facet ratio; it is a bit lighter at 2.9 kilos. The 14-inch Asus Chromebook Flip C436 is lighter but at 2.6 kilos.
The standard Chrome emblem is joined by the acquainted diagonal ThinkPad insignia (with light-up dot over the i) on the lid. Medium-slim bezels encompass the 1080p show, which two hinges enable to flip and fold into the pill, easel, and tent modes acquainted from different Yogas and different distributors’ 2-in-1s. The display barely wobbles when tapped in laptop computer mode; there’s nearly no flex in case you grasp its corners or press the keyboard deck.
We give massive bonus factors to the few Chromebooks which have an HDMI video output as a substitute of constructing you fuss with a USB-C DisplayPort dongle to plug in an exterior monitor. The C13 has one on its proper facet, together with a USB 3.2 Kind-C port, a quantity rocker, the ability button, and a security-cable locking notch. The left edge holds one other USB-C port, two USB 3.2 Kind-A ports, and an audio jack and microSD card slot. Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth handle wi-fi communications.
A Pleasure to Use
Like different panels rated at 300 nits of brightness, the contact display is sufficiently sunny—I would not thoughts having the ability to flip it up only one extra notch or two, however white backgrounds are decently crisp as a substitute of dingy. Colours are wealthy and properly saturated if not precisely vivid; distinction is nice and viewing angles are broad.
Tremendous particulars are sharp, however utilizing the native 1080p decision makes display components seem small. So, as with most Chromebooks, you possibly can select from quite a lot of “seems to be like” decision settings to fit your style. (The default is 1,536 by 864.)
Lenovo says the provided pen will get ample cost in its slot in 15 seconds to work for 100 minutes and offers 2,048 ranges of stress sensitivity. It tracked precisely and confirmed good palm rejection once I tried sketching in Chrome Canvas, but it surely wasn’t quick sufficient to maintain up with speedy scribbles with out skipping.
The backlit keyboard has a handy guide a rough typing really feel and the same old Chromebook format, with a search/menu key instead of Caps Lock and browser and system management keys alongside the highest row. The TrackPoint cursor controller has three buttons south of the house bar, giving customers who do not look after the same old two-finger faucet in Chrome OS an actual right-click button to play with. Each the TrackPoint and touchpad work easily and responsively.
The 720p webcam and a couple of,592-by-1,944-pixel keyboard cam seize pretty sharp, colourful, and well-lit photos, although it is awkward holding up the system in pill mode to snap an image. Aspect-mounted audio system produce tinny, muffled sound; bass is weak and overlapping tracks are flattened. Lenovo backs the ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook with a one-year guarantee.
Efficiency Testing: Chrome OS Convertibles In contrast
For our benchmark charts, I pitted the C13 towards 4 mid- to high-priced 2-in-1s with quite a lot of Intel processors. The Asus Chromebook Flip C436 has a Core i3. The Dell Latitude 5300 2-in-1 Chromebook Enterprise has a Core i5. So does the Editors’ Alternative award-winning Acer Chromebook Spin 713, which, just like the Core i7-powered HP Elite c1030 Chromebook Enterprise, has a 13.5-inch display with a 3:2 facet ratio. (See extra about how we take a look at laptops.)
It trailed the Core i7 Elite, however the ThinkPad’s Ryzen 5 CPU just about stored tempo with its Core i5 rivals. Opening a dozen browser tabs or streaming 1080p movies isn’t any problem.
The HP and Dell pulled into the lead, however the Yoga delivered strong middle-of-the-pack efficiency. These are all comparatively quick, ritzy Chromebooks, a lower above most shopper fashions.
We have added UL’s PCMark for Android Work 2.0 take a look at to our Chromebook routine. This take a look at suite runs in a small smartphone-style window and mimics productiveness operations starting from textual content and picture enhancing to information charting and video playback.
Not a lot separated the 5 contenders on this benchmark. The Lenovo practically caught the Core i7 HP, displaying excessive aptitude for Android apps and video games.
Lastly, to check a laptop computer’s battery life, we loop a 720p video file with display brightness set at 50%, audio quantity at 100%, and Wi-Fi and the keyboard backlight disabled till the system quits. Typically we have now to play the video from an exterior SSD plugged right into a USB-C port, however the rising variety of Chromebooks with solid-state as a substitute of eMMC flash drives have room to retailer it regionally.
Lasting rather less than 9 hours, the C13 confirmed unexceptional stamina by at this time’s ultraportable requirements, but it surely should not have any bother getting by means of a full day of labor.
A Worthy Addition to the ThinkPad Line
At $859 as examined, the ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook is a bit expensive in comparison with, say, the $629 Acer Spin 713, although it is a discount subsequent to the $1,529 HP Elite c1030. Nonetheless, we may see shoppers and entrepreneurs in search of a first-class Chrome OS convertible being very pleased with it, and corporations adopting Google Workspace (previously G Suite) will discover it an ideal match. It is a deserving Editors’ Alternative winner for companies keen to assume exterior the Home windows field.