Lenovo often likes to test new ideas in the marketplace vs. the lab. The new Yoga Book 9i, is a testament to that. This unique device, which at first glance appears to be a standard 2-in-1 laptop, replaces the traditional keyboard and trackpad with a second OLED display. You can see it in action in my latest review.
The Yoga Book 9i is a premium device, retailing at around $2000. It’s equipped with a 13th generation Intel i7 i1355u processor, 16GB of dual-channel memory, and a 512GB NVMe SSD. The device is not upgradable, so what you buy is what you get. However, it’s adequately equipped for its target market.
Both OLED screens run at 400 nits, offering 100% of DCI P3 in a 16:10 aspect ratio. The displays are vibrant with excellent contrast ratios and HDR support. The 2.8K resolution translates to 2880 by 1800 on each display.
The device is slightly heavier than a typical laptop of its size, weighing in at just under three pounds. This is due to the additional display and the glass associated with it. Battery life is also a consideration, with the dual displays consuming significant power, especially when running creative software with high screen brightness. Expect around five to six hours of battery life under typical work conditions.
The Yoga Book 9i comes with a Bluetooth keyboard, a pen, and a stand. The keyboard can be used detached from the computer, and when attached, it triggers a virtual trackpad on the lower display. I do wish they integrated a ThinkPad-like trackpoint into the keyboard as the virtual trackpad can be a little tricky to navigate vs. a physical one. The pen works well on both displays, supporting pressure detection and offering a good level of friction for a more natural writing experience. Unfortunately none of the included accessories dock or garage themselves so you’ll need to accommodate and keep track of them when out and about.
Performance-wise, the Yoga Book 9i is quite good. It handles video playback, web browsing, word processing, and even some gaming. There are a few games like Asphalt 9 that take advantage of the dual display layout. I also tested Red Dead Redemption 2 that ran at about 35 frames per second at 1900×1200. The device also performs well with creative work, such as video editing and photo editing, thanks to the quality of the displays.
However, Linux compatibility is currently a no-go, as Ubuntu did not properly detect the displays in my testing. For now, Windows seems to be the optimal operating system for this device.
The Lenovo Yoga Book 9i is a unique and innovative device that offers a new approach to computing. While it may not be for everyone, those in the creative field may find a lot of utility in its dual-display setup.