Asus has been offering dual-screen laptops for a few years, which typically means placing a second screen above the keyboard. But the new Asus Zenbook 17 FOLED OLED (UX9702) is the company’s first computer with a foldable display that allows you to use a single screen in laptop, tablet, or book modes.
The 17:3 inch, 4:3 aspect ratio and gives you a desktop-like experience when propped up on a table for use with a wired or wireless keyboard. Fold it in the center and you have a book-like device with two 12.5 inch displays, each with a 3:2 aspect ratio. Or place it folded on a table and use it as a laptop either with a virtual keyboard on half of the display or by placing a physical keyboard atop the bottom section.
Asus will ship the Zenbook Fold 17 OLED with an Asus ErgoSense Bluetooth keyboard with a built-in touchpad and 1.4mm key travel. You can either place it on the screen in laptop mode or use it as a separate device if you want to use the computer’s full display like a mobile desktop computer.
The 17.3 inch display is a 2560 x 1920 pixel screen with 100% DCI-P3 color gamut. That means when folded for use in laptop mode, you effectively get a 1920 x 1280 pixel display.
Above the display there’s a camera strip with:
- 5MP webcam for video calls
- HD IR camera for Windows Hello-compatible face recognition
- Color sensor for ambient light and color calibration
The tablet-laptop hybrid is powered by an Intel Core i7-1250U processor, which is a 9-29 watt chip with 10 cores, 12 threads and 0.95 GHz Intel Iris Xe graphics with 96 execution units. The computer also supports up to 16GB of LPDDR5 onboard memory and 1TB of PCIe x4 solid state storage.
Other features include quad speakers, support for Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos, WiFi 6E, Bluetooth 5.2, and a 75 Wh battery. It comes with a 65W USB-C power suply.
If there’s one thing the Zenbook Fold 17 OLED is light on, though, it’s ports: it has just three of them: two Thunderbolt 4 ports and a 3.5mm audio jack. Fortunately those Thunderbolt ports are versatile, allowing you to connect a power supply, external display, or all sorts of other accessories.
The Asus Zenbook Fold 17 OLED measures 8.7mm (0.34 inches) thick when unfolded, and the computer weighs 1.65 kilograms (about 3.64 pounds) without a keyboard.
Asus says the Fold 17 OLED will be available in the second quarter of 2022, but the company hasn’t announced how much you’ll have to spend to get your hands on one.
Overall, the Zenbook Fold 17 OLED reminds me a lot of the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold that hit the streets a little over a year ago. Except Lenovo’s foldable might have been a little ahead of its time, launching before Windows had really adapted to foldable displays and with a low-power Intel processor that offered underwhelming performance, especially for a computer with a $2500 list price.