Lenovo IdeaPad Miix review
A lightweight, long-lasting tablet that suffices for both work and leisure, although the absence of a trackpad or stylus is an oversight
Of the multifarious form factors we’ve seen from Windows 8 devices over the past year or so, none has come as close to [A HREF ="http://www.pcpro.co.uk/reviews/tablets/379795/microsoft-surface-rt"]the Microsoft Surface[/A] blueprint as the Lenovo Miix 10. Given that the Miix is £350 cheaper than the cheapest Surface Pro, does this make it an irresistible bargain?
The Miix is certainly less stylish than the Surface. Instead of a kickstand that emerges from the back of the tablet, the Miix comes with a plastic keyboard case. That may sound like a compromise but we found it a much more practical solution than Microsoft’s kickstand and keyboard cover combo. For one, you can use it on your lap, unlike the Surface, whose Type Cover keyboard flexes under your fingers, rendering some keys inoperable. The Surface is a good inch or so deeper in laptop mode, making the Miix more suitable for use in confined spaces such as aeroplane seat trays or train tables.
The Miix is also much lighter and slimmer. When popped out of the keyboard case – a process that involves a little more wrestling with stiff plastic clips than we’d like – it weighs a mere 574g, only 60% of the weight of the Surface Pro. That makes it more comfortable to hold as a tablet, and its rounded edges don’t dig into your fingers like the Surface’s. The weight and size difference is negligible with keyboards attached, however, although the Miix is 100g lighter at a shade over a kilogram.
The Miix's keyboard is perfectly adequate for a mobile device. The keys are fairly lightweight but offer sufficient travel, and they’re well spaced. There’s one enormous fly in the ointment, though: the absence of a trackpad or trackpoint. That’s not a serious concern in Metro apps, which are designed for touchscreen use, but trying to navigate the Windows desktop on the Miix’s 10.1in screen without a trackpad or stylus is like trying to drive a tractor across a tightrope. And don’t think you’ll simply be able to plug in a USB mouse when working – the only micro-USB port is completely inaccessible with the keyboard case clipped in place. A Bluetooth mouse is your only salvation.
|Price ex VAT||£374|
|Price inc VAT||£449|
|Warranty||1 yr return to base|
|Features & Design||4|
|Value for Money||5|
|Dimensions||283 x 20 x 95mm (WDH)|
|Resolution screen horizontal||1,366|
|Resolution screen vertical||768|
|Display type||IPS touchscreen|
|CPU frequency, MHz||1.8GHz|
|Mobile operating system||Windows 8 32-bit|