Lenovo ThinkPad Helix (2015) review

A powerful and flexible but pricey Windows tablet

Lenovo ThinkPad Helix (2015)
Lenovo ThinkPad Helix (2015)

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We liked

Lenovo's ThinkPad Helix offers a pretty powerful overall performance, and a very impressive screen to boot, with laudable brightness levels and accurate enough colours. The battery life is also a high point, with the tablet performing well as a standalone device, and the dock adding even more juice.

We disliked

While performance is good, the Helix is edged out by some of its hybrid rivals. We must also bear the price in mind – this is one expensive piece of hardware, especially at the high-end of the range. Another downside is that the Helix isn't particularly thin, nor is it particularly light.

Final verdict

Just who is the pricey ThinkPad Helix for? Clearly it isn't competing with Android tablets or the iPad. Perhaps not even the Surface Pro 3 – it would be silly to. All three have their own niche which they cover well, and Lenovo might not succeed if it took them head-on at their own game.

Instead, the ThinkPad Helix sits in its own segment of the market – this is a genuine hybrid tablet that actually has the power of a laptop. And there are plenty of people who want just that – a handheld, touchscreen device that can run any software going.

And with the dock, you can use it just like a laptop too.

Although it's not the thinnest or lightest tablet, the design is of a very high standard. The battery life is superb, the overall performance is good and the large high-resolution IPS screen is bright and big enough to be useful for real work.

The Helix should work just as well with more taxing tasks, such as light Photoshop use, as it does for the basics, such as web surfing or word processing. And that is perhaps the best thing about 2-in-1 hybrid devices – they'll run nearly all the same software you have on your desktop or laptop PC.

It's unfortunate though that the relatively high price isn't justified by market-leading performance, as the Helix comes out slightly slower than other models. But regardless of this, if it's a powerful Windows tablet you want, you're unlikely to be disappointed by the ThinkPad Helix, just as long as you can meet the asking price.