There’s no shortage of 2-in-1 tablets with detachable keyboard docks on the market. But if you’re looking for an idea of what the next generation will look like, Intel’s latest reference design is always a good place to start.
At the Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco, the company revealed a reference design for a 2-in-1 detachable ultrabook with the latest hardware, including Intel Skylake processors, USB Type-C connectors, wireless charging, WiGig wireless docking support, and more.
The chip maker has been talking about a wire-free future for a few years, and the latest reference design seems to include just about everything you’d need for a totally wireless device.
Wireless charging means you don’t need to plug in a power cable (although you’ll still need one for the charging pad). WiGig technology lets you connect to a docking station if you want to use a keyboard, mouse, storage devices, or other peripherals. And Intel WiDi technology supports wireless displays.
But Intel figures you might still need to plug things in from time to time, which is why the company recommends a Thunderbolt port with a USB Type-C connector. It’s a versatile solution that lets you charge the tablet and connect a range of accessories including displays and even external graphics cards.
Alright, there’s nothing too surprising about most of those recommendations. But how about this one? Intel also thinks 2-in-1 tablet makers should consider adding a 6 inch, 1024 x 768 pixel E Ink display to the back of the tablet.
This secondary screen could be used to display static graphics, convey status updates or other messages, or let you use the tablet as an eReader for reading long articles or eBooks in a low-power mode while the primary color screen is turned off.
Intel also notes that advertisements could be shown on that screen.
Other features Intel is recommending for modern 2-in-1 systems include active stylus support, 13MP, 4K cameras, multiple microphones for noise cancellation, a keyboard base station with a ForcePad touchpad, full-sized keyboard, and an extra battery.