Lenovo had quite a few product announcements at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2019. The ThinkPad X1 Carbon and ThinkPad X1 Yoga got some aesthetic and thermal upgrades. The Yoga series has some new laptops, which includes the Yoga S940, the Yoga A940 and the OLED display sporting C730. The line now includes OLED displays. Among this new Yoga line-up, the one notebook that really had me impressed was the Yoga S940.
The first thing you notice with this notebook is how thin and light it is. Measuring just 12.2 mm thick and weighing in at 1.2 kg, the Yoga S940 looks sleek. The Iron Grey colour seems to be the colour of choice for the Yoga series this CES, the X1 Yoga has adopted the same colour scheme.
On opening the flap, you are presented with a bright and sharp display with really thin bezels. But it’s not just the thin bezels that get your eye, it’s also the one-of-a-kind Contour Glass design. What I mean by that is that the glass tends to wrap around the edges of the display. Thanks to the aluminium flap around it protruding out a bit, there is no danger of the glass smashing against something it shouldn’t.
Lenovo has gone with minimal ports on the Yoga S940 to maintain the slim profile, but that’s par for the course at this stage. You only have two USB Type-C Thunderbolt 3 ports and one USB Type-C port which can also act as a power in port. There are no SD card slots or LAN ports, a decision which makes sense given the thin form factor. Thankfully, Lenovo has retained the audio jack.
The build quality of the Lenovo Yoga S940 is sturdy. Unlike other Yoga devices, the display does not go back by 360 degrees.
In terms of internal specifications, you can have 8th gen Intel Core i7 processor, 8 GB or 16 GB LPDDR3 RAM and storage ranging from 256 GB to 1 TB, in the form of PCIe SSDs. On the display front, you can select between a 14-inch 4K display with Dolby Vision support or a standard FullHD panel. Unless you’re really keen on Dolby Vision, I do feel that 4K seems a bit of an overkill on a 14-inch display, not to mention the premium it will be priced at and the limited battery life you would get vis-à-vis FullHD panels.
The Yoga S940 also sports an IR camera in addition to the front-facing camera to help with some Lenovo Smart Assist features. One of them functions similarly to Windows Hello, letting you log in to your device by recognising your face. Then there are four far-field microphones on the S940 to help out with Cortana or Alexa on PC support. There’s another feature called ‘Snap Window’ which Lenovo said lets you move content from your S940’s display to a connected monitor by just turning your head. I haven’t tried the feature myself, but my colleague has tried the feature on older ThinkPads and claims that it works “sometimes”.
Another interesting feature is that you can have a sort of portrait mode active during video calls, which means that distracting background behind you can be blurred.
Given everything I’ve seen about the S940, I didn’t expect it to come cheap, and it isn’t. The starting price for the Yoga S940 is $1,499 and it will start selling from May 2019 onwards. This would surely make for an interesting comparison with the MacBook Air, the Asus ZenBook and other slim form factor laptops