Lenovo has always managed to keep the average users interest hooked up on to their IdeaPad series while they let the ThinkPad series service the business class. Their latest release, the Lenovo IdeaPad S10-3T Multi Touch tablet/Netbook, aims for the average ‘fun’ user rather than serious business class netbook users.
The S10-3T is one of the first netbooks to feature the new version of the Atom processor. The OS has been updated Windows 7 from the older XP which the series previously offered. The USP of this machine though is its ability to swivel the screen totally and fold it thus becoming Lenovo’s own iPad. Ok that may seem too far but nevertheless it does seem like a complete tablet. Here is a spec sheet which will give you an idea of the machine’s capabilities:
• Intel Atom N470 @ 1.83GHz, 667MHz FSB, 512KB cache
• 2GB DDR2 RAM
• 10.1” LCD, 1024×600 LED Backlight
• Intel GMA 3150 Integrated Graphics
• 250GB Seagate Momentus 5400.6 HD
• 802.11b/g/n Wi-fi
• 1.3 MP Webcam
For a full spec sheet you can head to the company’s website. The IdeaPad comes with a price tag of 649$ which is pretty high for the netbook standard. The question is, is the machine worth the hefty price even if it is a tablet netbook combo? We decided to go delve further into the machine’s capabilities.
The design is cool and funky. Lenovo has done a reasonably good job in spicing up the netbook while not going overboard. With a resolution of 1024×600 the netbook is very wide for its height. The build quality is average. The ports on the laptop include 2 USB, a memory card slot, an optional TV output and a VGA output. There is also an Ethernet jack and a wireless on/off switch. The inside of the netbook though doesn’t reflect the exterior designing. Once opened a bright white keyboard shows up with a ultra small size trackpad. The trackpad is the type found in the newer MacBook Pro with no button but you have to mash the corners to click. It also doesn’t support multi touch. This new idea though unique is not very user friendly. Drag and drop is almost an impossible task in this trackpad. The screen sports a gloss finish rather than a matte finish as we would have expected. The screen reflects a whole lot and is almost washed out outdoors.
Lenovo has done a commendable job with the touch interface. The touch is very responsive and the integrated accelerometer orients the screen in any direction you want. The IdeaPad ships with Windows 7 Home Premium and a host of other bloatware. It would have been much better had Lenovo thrown in a DVD instead of forcing the software upon us.
The new Atom processor and 2GB of Ram coupled with Windows 7 should have meant better performance but it just doesn’t seem so. Even simple operations took a whole lot of time. In fact the iPhone is quicker when it comes to switching the screen orientation. The screen responds beautifully to touch inputs but again Lenovo has not included a stylus which would have optimised the tablet experience.
On the whole the machine doesn’t live up to its 600$+ price mark. The iPad cannot handle Flash videos because of the lack of Flash support but neither can the S10-3t thanks to the lacklustre performance. The battery too has let us down giving about 2.5 to 3 hours of juice and that is without using the touch screen. The concept of the tablet netbook concept is amazing but Lenovo just didn’t provide adequate support to the idea.