The Apple Tablet (or “iSlate” if you prefer) is probably going to be announced later this month, but it will likely still “restrict” you to a touchscreen only experience. What if you want to have a full keyboard to use at times? It seems that the Lenovo U1 overcomes this very concern by combining a netbook with a removable tablet PC.
This isn’t the first time that we’ve seen a netbook with tablet PC-like capabilities, but those usually had the swiveling touchscreens. The difference with the Lenovo U1 is that it has a removable tablet portion. In this way, the keyboard part is really just a docking station.
While in standalone tablet form, the unit gets its power from a 1GHz Snapdragon processor and a lightweight Linux-based operating system. You get 512MB of DDR1 RAM and a 16GB SSD in a 1.6 pound package. That’s pretty portable, I’d say.
Plopping it into the dock for the netbook shape, you get bumped up to 3.8 total pounds, but you gain access to an Intel Core 2 Duo U4100 processor, up to 4GB of DDR3 RAM, and a 128GB SSD, along with Windows 7.
That’s the good news. The bad news is that the Lenovo U1 tablet/netbook combo is going to cost you about a thousand dollars. Start saving your allowance!