Notebooks

20 of the best Windows 8 apps for a tablet or hybrid device

To get the most out of your Windows 8 tablet or laptop-tablet hybrid device, you really have to venture into Windows 8’s Modern UI (formerly called Metro) and make use of the native apps that are on offer from the Windows Store. If you don’t use your Windows 8 tablet or laptop in this environment, then you aren’t taking full advantage of what Windows 8 offers.

Product recall: Sony VAIO Fit 11A laptops plagued by faulty batteries

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has issued a product safety recall for Sony’s VAIO Fit Multi-Flip 11A hybrid laptop. The specific models in the recall are the SVF11N18CGP and SVF11N18CGS, and it concerns users who purchased these models between 1 March and 10 April 2014.

Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 2 Pro: one of the best hybrid Ultrabooks on the market

Lenovo’s IdeaPad Yoga 2 Pro is an Ultrabook with a set of special hinges that allow the screen to tilt all the way over. Because of these hinges, you can switch from a laptop to a tablet with a minimum of fuss, despite the 13.3in size of the unit. Furthermore, it’s a product that still manages to supply a strong configuration, and the key highlight here is a screen with a massive 1800p resolution. The main downside is the $1999 price tag, which could be out of reach of many budgets.

Acer C720P Chromebook with touchscreen

Acer’s C720P is essentially the same Chrombook as the C720 that we reviewed back in November 2013, but it adds a touchscreen to the mix. It’s claimed by Acer to the first Chromebook with a touchscreen, and, if nothing else, it gives the C720P better overall looks than the C720, while perhaps not adding much to the overall usability of the product.

HP Pavilion x360 hybrid tablet/laptop

The HP Pavilion x360 is a device with a hybrid purpose: you can use it as a regular laptop, or you can tilt its screen all the way around and turn the laptop into a tablet. It's a neat solution to the 2-in-1 problem, mainly because there is no need to slide, separate, or snap the product in order to convert it.

Acer TravelMate P645 Ultrabook

The Acer TravelMate P645 may be a 14in Ultrabook, but you could be forgiven for thinking that it’s a 13.3in model at first glance. It has a slight build that ensures it’s not bulky or heavy, and it features clean lines and a thin screen bezel, which give it an understated styling. You can get it in a few different configurations, but the one we are looking at here is the entry-level model, which, of course, is the most affordable option.

HP Chromebook 14

We took a brief look at the HP Chromebook 14 late last year. It's one of the models that the vendor is actively pushing in the education sector. The reasons for this are because it runs the simple Chrome OS operating system, which basically relies on the Cloud and all a user has to do to see their own environment is log in, but also because it's big and comfortable to type on. Still, there's plenty there to entice users in other market segments, too.

Medion Akoya P2212T 2-in-1 Windows 8 tablet

Medion has now moved into the realm of 2-in-1 hybrid products, offering a new Akoya (P2212T) laptop that can act as both a Windows 8.1 tablet and as a notebook thanks to a removable keyboard base. It’s an 11.6in device with a familiar look and feel as far as Medion products go, which is to say the build quality isn’t premium, but it offers specifications that might make you do a double-take considering its $599 price tag. It will be available from Aldi supermarkets on 26 March.

Top rated notebooks

Top rated notebooks

We list our top rated notebooks for the month, ranging from Ultrabooks to gaming units

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GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

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