Convertible laptops are a technology of convenience. Combining the power and functionality of a traditional laptop with the flexibility of a tablet, convertible 2-in-1 laptops have carved out a sizable niche in a crowded market – both for students and business heads. The best convertible laptops come with plenty of benefits that are well worth discovering, as well as a couple of design quirks to keep in mind.
Everything you need to know about convertible laptops
With more convertible touchscreen laptops on the market than ever, it’s a good idea to brush up on your knowledge of what they’re capable of and whether a 2-in-1 would better suit your lifestyle than a regular laptop, tablet or PC tower.
What is a convertible laptop?
Let’s start with the most basic question: what is a convertible laptop and what does it do? These 2-in-1 laptops are designed to be used both as a traditional laptop with a keyboard and screen, and as a tablet in a touchscreen-only configuration. There are two variants to choose from: detachable laptops and convertible hybrid laptops.
A detachable 2-in-1 laptop allows you to remove the screen from the keyboard so you can use it as a tablet. The keyboard is attached to the screen via a built-in magnetic or mechanical hinge. The design is highly intuitive, so it takes just a moment to turn the laptop into a tablet and vice versa.
A convertible hybrid laptop also comes with a hinge, with which the keyboard can be rotated until it’s fully behind the screen. This design also allows you to convert the laptop into “tent mode”, where the keyboard is folded into a kickstand position. The screen can then be used as a tablet in an upright position, which is useful if you want to watch a movie or binge a TV show during a business trip.
Whether you opt for a detachable or convertible hybrid design, it’s the number of modes available to you that makes a convertible 2-in-1 laptop stand out: there is laptop mode, which combines the screen with the use of the keyboard; display mode, where only the screen is used (e.g. for touchscreen games); tent mode for solid entertainment; and tablet mode, where a stylus is used together with the touchscreen. This makes convertible touchscreen laptops highly versatile and suitable for work, play and everything in between.
Advantages of having a convertible laptop
Convertible laptops offer many benefits, not least the fact that you don’t need a separate laptop and tablet – a 2-in-1 covers both functions, which is excellent value for money.
The streamlined components and specifications combine to make convertible laptops super portable, which is perfect if you commute regularly or need to jot down notes in class.
As mentioned above, you can switch between modes with ease to take advantage of the touchscreen, whether with your fingertips or a stylus.
You can count on superior battery power, too, as the components inside a 2-in-1 are less power-hungry.
Finally, the compact design of most 2-in-1 laptops makes it a breeze when shopping around for convertible laptop bags that suit your style – simply because a 2-in-1 will fit inside a backpack, roll-top or messenger bag with room to spare.
Disadvantages of having a convertible laptop
Few things in life are perfect, and convertible laptops are no exception.
In terms of drawbacks, a 2-in-1 may sometimes have a bulkier profile than a notebook or ultrabook.
The keyboard has smaller keys, which can make it more of a challenge to type.
As for processing power, a convertible laptop has more than a tablet but less than a traditional laptop, so if you need a lot of hard drive space it’d be worth looking elsewhere for your needs.
Best convertible laptops
Two convertible laptops stand out from the pack when it comes to combining stellar features with portability and price performance. First up is the Dell Inspiron 7000 2-in-1. Boasting a huge 17-inch (431 mm) screen, this Dell convertible laptop is the perfect choice if you’re looking for a convertible hybrid that excels in multimedia and general computing tasks. It comes with 512 GB of storage, 16 GB of memory and a dedicated NVIDIA GeoForce graphics card, which can comfortably handle less graphics-intensive games. The display is sharp and vivid, it has a backlit keyboard, the built-in speakers produce a crisp sound, and the battery life is impressive at 16+ hours based on continuous use. It’s ruggedly built, too, so it can withstand a few knocks on your way to work or school.
A surefire choice in the convertible laptop segment is the HP Spectre 2-in-1 16” laptop . Slightly smaller than the Dell Inspiron 7000, the 16-inch (406 mm) LCD IPS touchscreen is extremely impressive, producing clear visuals and accurate color. The specs for this HP convertible laptop speak for themselves: it comes with an Intel Core i7 processor, 16 GB of memory, 512 GB of storage and an Intel Iris Xe graphics card, which is ideal for content creation, productivity and gaming. The 1080p webcam is a major plus for video calls, as are the strong wireless connectivity options.
Ready to streamline your setup? Head over to Grover to browse the best convertible laptops, rent the one that best suits your needs, and become a 2-in-1 convert.