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Internally, the ThinkPad 10 is more in line with the iPad Air than the Surface Pro 3, primarily because it embraces Intel's newest Atom SoC instead of a Core series CPU in an effort to produce the more affordable $599 (£350, about AU$637) price tag compared to the the Surface Pro 3's $799 (£466, about AU$850) MSRP. In this regard, it is a true tablet, comparable (at least internally) to the 64GB iPad, which costs $659 (£385, about AU$701).
- CPU: 1.59GHz Intel Atom Z3795 (quad-core, 2MB cache, up to 2.39GHz with Turbo Boost)
- Graphics: Intel HD Graphics (7th generation)
- Memory: 2GB DDR3 (1,067MHz)
- Storage: 64GB
- Display: 10.1-inch 1920 x 1200 IPS, 10-finger touchscreen
- Cameras: Rear 8MP, front 2MP
- Ports: micro HDMI-out, USB 2.0, microSD, audio jack, digitizer socket
- Size: 10.1 x 6.96 x 0.35 inches (W x D x H)
- Weight: 1.3 pounds
TechRadar's configuration of the ThinkPad 10 tablet – 2GB of memory and 64GB of storage – costs $599 (£350, about AU$638). (Pricing for the various accessories can be found on the following page.)
Intel's new SoC is the star of this showing. Released early this year on Intel's Bay Trail-T platform, the Atom Z3795 is a quad-core CPU. The chip is clocked is 1.59GHz, which is peppy in comparison to other tablet-based CPUs, and can burst up to 2.39GHz. The end result is surprising levels of performance when performing intermediate tasks, even more surprising power conservation, and (in theory at least) a lack of any significant heat output.
The Z3795's integrated Intel HD graphics reinforce this SoC's smart design. Intel's 7th generation onboard graphics processor – known more commonly as HD Graphics 4000 in laptops – won't handle current PC games in any way, shape or form. But it is capable of running the ThinkPad 10's 1920 x 1200 display without draining the battery. (In fact, it can even display up to 2560 x 1600 pixels without sweating too much.)
Aside from all that, this is a fairly standard loadout for a tablet device. My initial reaction upon seeing that TechRadar's review copy had 2GB of memory was that this was going to be too little system RAM. Thankfully, you can pay up to double the RAM capacity.
You can do the same with the ThinkPad 10's storage memory, which can be boosted to 128GB from the default 64GB. Power users will also love the presence of USB and microSD card slots, which will allow you to quickly add storage if needed.
Aside from the relatively low system memory, the only real drawback here is the absence of a 802.11ac compatible network adapter.