Without a doubt, the most engaging aspect of the Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8 is its multimode design, which allows it to be used handheld, standing, or tilted.
The unit's cylindrical handle doubles as a oversize battery compartment, but it also makes the tablet much easier to operate with one hand. Furthermore, at a mere 0.88 lbs., the unit is so light that reading, checking email, or web browsing for long periods doesn't tire your arm.
In tilt mode, the Yoga tablet props itself to make on-screen typing or playing games more comfortable. To switch to stand mode, simply rotate the cylinder 90°. Free-standing, the device can then provide a useable viewing angle from 110° to 135°, making it ideal for watching movies or upright interaction with the ten-finger touch screen. The position-aware operating system (Android 4.2, "Jelly Bean") can even be configured to automatically bring up frequently-used apps in stand mode or hold mode.
Battery life is another standout feature. Lenovo rates the Lenovo Tablet 8 at 18 hours. The dual oversize batteries housed in the cylindrical handle can even charge other devices, such as smart phones, via its USB on-the-go port.
Equipped with Dolby audio and front front-facing speakers, the device delivers impressive sound, especially given its small form factor. A 3.5mm headphone jack is conveniently located at one end of the cylinder; the power button is on the other.
Also included are a high-definition 1280 x 800 IPS (In-Plane Switching) display, a 5MP auto-focus rear camera, 1.6MP front camera, and a micro SD expansion slot (64GB max).
Is the 8-inch Lenovo Yoga the best choice for a mini tablet? Alternatives have better specs, but if you're sold on its multimode design, Lenovo's Yoga series is a solid choice. Oddly, the 8-inch Yoga is more impressive than its big brother, the Lenovo Yoga Tablet 10, whose larger screen looks faded and washed-out when the two are compared.
The Yoga Tablet 8 has an MSRP of $199 and is available exclusively at Best Buy stores or at Lenovo's web site. The green sleeve for the Yoga 8 tablet, shown on the Fox 8 Morning News, sells for $29.99.
Updated Dell sets bar for hi-res laptop displays
Wow! There is no better word to describe the new Dell XPS 15 (2013) notebook. Released right before the holidays, this multimedia powerhouse has been in high demand and no wonder! Properly configured, this good-looking notebook provides the highest display resolution in its class, Intel Haswell-family battery efficiency, high-performance storage, and a 10-point multi-touch Windows 8.1 experience.
Weighing less than 4.5 lbs., the updated XPS 15 is the first 15.6-inch laptop in the world to feature a gorilla glass-protected, Quad HD+ display providing over 5.7 million pixels (3,200 x 1,800). In comparison, the highly-regarded Retina display of a 15-inch MacBook Pro only provides 2,880 x 1,800 resolution.
The hardware goodness doesn't stop there, either. You can choose either an Intel 4th generation Core i5 or Core i7 processor and NVIDIA discrete graphics. Up to 16GB of RAM is available, and thanks to a choice of rotational hard drives ranging from 500GB to 1TB (both with a 32GB SSD) or a 512GB SSD, every updated Dell XPS 15 boots/resumes within seconds. USB 3.0 ports, HDMI output, high-performance WLAN, Bluetooth 4.0, etc. are standard.