Lenovo’s new ThinkBook Plus Gen 3 puts an 8-inch screen right next to the keyboard
Are two screens really better than one?
The unexpected success of Asus’ ZenBook Duo has prompted many companies to begin exploring the idea of laptops with two screens. Lenovo has been doing so for the past few years with its ThinkBook Plus series of laptops. With the first and second generations, we saw the company strap a secondary display to the lid of the machines, and now, that second screen is an 8-inch panel located to the right of the keyboard and trackpad. It’s certainly a more conventional dual-screen laptop setup.
Of course, when closed, the ThinkBook Plus Gen 3 looks like any ordinary clamshell, if a bit long. Opening it up, you’re presented by a 17.3-inch ultra-wide 21:10 display (the first of its kind for a laptop, according to Lenovo) with a 3072×1440 resolution and 120Hz refresh rate. The display gets up to 400 nits bright and supports Dolby Vision as well.
The extra screen real-estate means Lenovo was able to cram its secondary 8-inch 1280×800 LCD display in the base of the laptop next to the keyboard and trackpad. The second screen will allow you to expand controls within apps and windows on your main display across both panels, while secondary apps can also be run for increased multitasking. Lenovo says the laptop comes with an integrated digital pen so you can doodle on the secondary screen for better accuracy, as well as edit photos in supported apps with more refined control.
Another feature that seems pretty clever is smartphone mirroring. Lenovo says you’ll be able to mirror your Android smartphone to the second screen for easier access to your device while working. This will obviously only work with Android devices, but I’m curious to see just how useful it could become.
Besides the unusual form factor, the ThinkBook Plus Gen 3 has traditional laptop specifications. You’ll find Intel’s 12th-generation processors inside along with up to 32GB of LPDDR5 RAM, 1TB of M.2 PCIe Gen 4 storage, Intel Iris Xe graphics, a Full HD webcam/IR camera for video calls and Windows Hello, a fingerprint reader, dual-array microphones, Harman Kardon speakers, and a 69Whr battery that Lenovo says lasts “through the workday.”
Lenovo says the laptop is compatible with a new multi-device wireless charging mat that can not only charge your phone, but also your laptop thanks to a Power-by-Contact pad. It charges your ThinkBook at 65W (opposed to the included charger’s 96W output) and your phone at 10W. It’s a separate purchase, one that seems pretty intriguing.
The ThinkBook Plus Gen 3 will go on sale starting in May for $1,399.