I’m not in Las Vegas, but the all-digital CES 2021 event has no lack of exciting new products to check out. This year, a deluge of new laptops have been launched, ranging from new work-from-home gear to powerful gaming laptops.
So far, the focus has been two-fold: Commercial laptops for remote workers and experimental new form factors for mobile computing. Powered by the upcoming and exciting new components from Intel, Nvidia, and AMD, laptops have never been so interesting.
Here are the ones I am most impressed by so far, and those that I can’t wait to get in for a full review.
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga
The ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga has a couple of awesome things going for it. Not only is it the thinnest ThinkPad ever made at just 0.45 inches thick, but it’s also the most durable, thanks to the titanium on the lid. The combination of elements makes for one of the sleekest laptops I’ve ever held.
The 3:2 aspect ratio also makes it a ThinkPad unlike any other. The increased vertical space makes this 13.5-inch screen feel so much bigger than it actually is.
The one downside of the reduced size is that you lose your HDMI and USB-A ports by being this thin, but the Thunderbolt-only ports match what you get in competitive laptops like the Dell XPS 13 or MacBook Pro 13-inch.
Of course, on the inside, it has all the ThinkPad trademarks, such as the iconic TrackPoint nub and the curved keycaps. The screen should be familiar as well, though this one comes in a taller 3:2 aspect ratio, which is another point in its favor in my book.
Read more about the ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga
HP Elite Folio
HP describes this as a “pull-forward” 2-in-1, meaning the screen can be locked into a more comfortable position as a tablet. HP experimented with this design with the Spectre Folio, a consumer product from a couple of years ago that I was fascinated by. The leather housing and the ability to pull the screen over the keyboard all worked better than it should have.
But this time around, HP has made a number of changes, all for the better. It uses a darker vegan leather, has a taller 3:2 aspect ratio screen, and — most interestingly — it boasts a Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2. ARM processors are becoming more and more common, especially in higher-end commercial laptops like the HP Elite Folio.
Read more about the HP Elite Folio
Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2
The original Samsung Galaxy Chromebook was one of the most exciting Chromebooks announced at CES last year. It was a gorgeous laptop, but it wasn’t exactly practical. The 4K AMOLED screen was a killer on battery life, and the price of $1,000 was more than anyone wanted to pay for a Chromebook.
But the sequel is far more balanced. It has just a 1080p screen, and the screen technology is now QLED, which is great for extending battery life. The price has also been dropped to $699, which is still expensive, but a far more realistic price for a premium Chromebook. The Pixelbook Go has long been my favorite Chromebook, but the Galaxy Chromebook 2 may have a serious chance at dethroning it.
Read more about the Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2
More to come
CES 2021 is only getting underway, and there are plenty more laptops still waiting in the wings. Big names like Asus, Acer, and more have yet to drop their new products, so be on the lookout for those.
Nvidia and AMD have yet to announce their latest silicon, which should find its way into new laptops at the show.
As more product announcements are announced, this post will continue to be updated throughout the week with more picks.