Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 11 review

The laptop-tablet hybrid is back in a smaller version with Windows RT

Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 11 review
The Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 11 runs Windows RT

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The Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 11 is a stylish, lightweight and durable laptop that neatly doubles as a tablet. At 11 inches, it's portable and thin enough to be used in tablet form, but like its bigger brother, having the keys on the reverse affecting your grip makes it far from ideal.

If you're looking for a laptop form factor for work, which doubles as a tablet for basic apps and sofa surfing, then the Yoga 11 is worth serious consideration, although we'd advise you to head to your nearest PC superstore to give it the once over.

It's not for everyone, and we'd primarily recommend it to someone looking for a small Windows 8 laptop who doesn't want to miss out on enjoying all the touchscreen goodness that Windows 8 has to offer.

However, as an entertainment device that demands to be used more as a tablet, the more stylish Surface RT is top of our list, and you'll save a wedge for apps and accessories.

The price of the Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 11 is absurdly high, at £699/US$849 (around AU$1,069), and any consumer wrestling with the cost of an iPad will only make one decision when faced with the Yoga's colossal price tag.

We liked

The look and feel of the Yoga 11 is impressive, and we liked the soft finish and the stylish and vibrant orange styling. At 1.27kg (2.79lbs) it's just light and thin enough to be thrown into a bag, and the solid build quality means it will certainly survive a few knocks, too.

While we're still unsure about Windows RT, the inclusion of the Office 2013 suite as standard is a big plus-point, and unless you require specific software such as Photoshop Elements, you should be able to find most things you need.

We disliked

The price of the Yoga 11 is absolutely absurd, and represents a missed opportunity to carve a niche with this innovative bendy product. The lacklustre power, dull lifeless panel, minimal storage and flat-lining app ecosystem doesn't justify the price tag. If you can leave the tablet functionality, the Asus VivoBook S200 touchscreen laptop is a much better buy, and runs full-fat x86 Windows apps.

We're not sold on the Lenovo's performance as a tablet, and while we'd say that it's just light enough to be used comfortably, we think it's time Lenovo conceded that having the keys in your main grip areas ruins the experience, and it might be time to go back to the drawing board.

Final verdict

While we're pleased that there's another member of Team Windows RT on the market, the Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 11 won't do Microsoft any favours in convincing people that it's a sensible purchase. The sky-high price tag, mediocre performance and limited capabilities need to be overcome, and getting sub-£400/$500 products on the shelves would be a good start.

The Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 11 is a nifty device in itself, but it's not as fun as Microsoft Surface, and unless you're looking for a work laptop that doubles as a nifty tablet to watch films on, we'd advise forking out for a more expensive Sony Vaio Duo 11 or the more portable Microsoft Surface.