The Consumer Electronic Show (CES) 2018 in Las Vegas gave us our first look at the latest innovations in laptops that should impress consumers and businesses.
A common theme among the big announcements was an emphasis on an "always-connected" machine with built-in 4G LTE capabilities. This development, along with continued support for the 2-in-1 functionality that allows you to convert your laptop into a tablet, as well as increased portability, is a sign that tech companies are slowly bridging the worlds of laptops and mobile phones.
This is good news for businesses with employees who are constantly on the move and need a consistent online connection beyond their smartphone. Here are five products revealed at CES that fit that bill and that you should keep an eye out for as they're released in early 2018.
Acer – Swift 7
Release: March 2018
- 8.98-mm thin, making it the world's thinnest laptop as of January 2018
- Contains a built-in Intel XMM 4G LTE for constant connection
Acer claims the Swift 7 is the world's thinnest laptop, boasting an 8.98-mm thickness when closed. The company has managed to shrink the design to fit the 7th Gen Intel Core i7 processor, accompanied with 8GB of RAM and built-in 256GB SSD drive. Acer also claims this model has 10 hours of battery life. The 14-inch display is a full HD touchscreen. In an effort to keep the Swift 7 always connected, even when on the move, it features Intel XMM 4G LTE connectivity with a Nano SIM card slot and eSim capability, so you can download a wireless profile.
Dell – XPS 15 2-in-1
Release: Spring 2018
- 8th Gen Intel Quad Core i7 with Radeon RX Vega M GL graphics make this a powerful machine
- 15.6-inch UltraSharp 4K Ultra HD display
Dell one ups itself by announcing the XPS 15 2-in-1 laptop proceeding its new XPS 13 announcement. The device features the new 8th Gen Intel Quad Core i7 with Radeon RX Vega M GL graphics, which outputs powerful processing and graphics capability to take advantage of the 4K Ultra HD display. The laptop is manufactured with thermal insulation by GORE to improve thermal conductivity levels and lower the device's temperature. The XPS 15 claims 15 hours of battery use.
Aimed at artists, designers, and other creatives, the laptop is compatible with Dell's Premium Active Pen for superior pressure sensitivity and tilt, making it great for drawing. The keyboard boasts new maglev technology, which simulates the feel of a standard keyboard, but allows for a thinner design.
HP – Spectre x360 15
Release: March 18, 2018
Starting Price: $1,369
- Micro-edge 4K display
- Strong, durable touchscreen with Corning Gorilla Glass
HP's latest Spectre x360 15 will make for tough competition in the 2-in-1 laptop market. The 15.6-inch, touchscreen display is 4K and durable thanks to materials by Corning Gorilla Glass, so it's ready for frequent use with your fingers or stylus.
The Spectre x360 15 is backed by your choice of 8th Gen Intel Core i7 processor with Radeon RX Vega M graphics or the Quad core 8th Gen Intel Core processors with NVIDIA GeForce MX 150 graphics. Fast-charging technology can bring the battery up to 50 percent in 30 minutes with the Radeon option, or up to 90 percent in 90 minutes with the NVIDIA option.
Lenovo – Mixx 630 2-in-1
Release: Q2 2018
Starting Price: $799
- 20 hours of battery life
- Qualcomm Snapdragon processor helps keep the device connected to 4G LTE
Lenovo introduced the world to their Mixx 630 2-in-1 laptop with an emphasis on consistent performance and portability. The laptop features a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and 4G LTE capability to keep the machine constantly connected. The detachable keyboard frees the 12.3-inch display to act in tablet form for watching or drawing with the included stylus.
The battery should last an impressive 20 hours on a charge even when connected to 4G. The Mixx 630 is fan-less, opting for a smaller, less heat-intensive chipset for quiet operation. With its light and efficient design at 2.93 pounds, Lenovo's Mixx 360 brings the laptop and mobile phone worlds closer together.
Samsung – Notebook 9 Pen
Release: Q1 2018
- Built-in S Pen with added touch functionality
- At 2.2 lbs., it's one of the lightest 2-in-1 laptops
Samsung's Notebook 9 Pen is the company's latest iteration on their Notebook series that comes with every essential feature you need for a modern 2-in-1 laptop. Sporting the 8th Generation Intel Core i7, as well as 16GB of DDR4 RAM, the Notebook 9 Pen should prove to be part of the company's fastest series of laptops.
As the name implies, one of the most outstanding features is the built-in S Pen of Samsung Galaxy fame. As soon as you remove the pen from its slot underneath the keyboard, the laptop knows you're ready to start drawing, take notes or use it for other creative uses, so it launches the appropriate programs and shortcuts. The S Pen recognizes 4,096 levels of pressure and has tilt detection, giving it the feel of a natural pen, pencil or paintbrush. You can use the pen to make screen captures.