Lenovo’s first ThinkPad Helix system launched in 2013, combining a premium Windows tablet with a keyboard dock… and a high price tag.
Now the company is updating the Helix with a new model that’s thinner, lighter, and faster. Meet the Lenovo ThinkPad Helix 2. It’s one of the first 2-in-1 ultrabooks powered by an Intel Core M VPRO Broadwell processor.
The Helix 2 is an 11.6 inch tablet with a full HD display and Windows 8.1 software. Connect it to a keyboard dock and it becomes a fairly thin and light notebook. It’s also fanless.
Lenovo’s new model is powered by an Intel Core M chip, features 802.11ac WiFi, and is thinner and lighter than the Ivy Bridge model it replaces. The new tablet measures about 0.38 inches thick and weighs 1.76 pounds.
Add a keyboard dock and it becomes a notebook that weighs 3 pounds.
You can also use the keyboard as a sort of kickstand. Instead of attaching the tablet so the screen faces the keyboard, you can flip it 180 degrees so the screen faces away from the keyboard.
Lenovo’s Helix 2 also supports an optional ThinkPad digitizer pen for pressure-sensitive input.
Lenovo says the ThinkPad Helix 2 will run for up to 12 hours on a charge.
Lenovo’s Helix systems don’t come cheap: the original sold for $1679 and up when it launched in 2013. The new model is much more affordable with prices starting at $999.
But it still ain’t cheap. If what you’re really looking for is an inexpensive Windows tablet, there are already plenty of those on the market anyway, some with prices as low as $149.
This is a machine aimed at business users, and it’ll also support an optional desktop dock, among other accessories.
The Lenovo Helix 2 should be available in October.