Lenovo announces new Yoga tablets with built-in projector, giant Phab smartphones

The projector-in-a-tablet concept is back, with three new models that can host an epic movie night.

There’s no sign of Ashton Kutcher to pitch the product this time around, but Lenovo is doubling down on its projector-in-a-tablet Yoga series.

Lenovo unveiled three different models of the Yoga tablets that pack a projector inside the hinge and two tablet-sized smartphones at the IFA conference in Berlin Wednesday.

The story behind the story: Lenovo made news last year with its rather unique tablet concept, putting a projector right inside the hinge. The company even brought aboard Ashton Kutcher with the title of “project manager” and claimed he had a role in the design of the product. Somehow, Lenovo has pulled off a second round of these devices without his guiding hand.

Another round of Yoga tablets

The top-flight model is the Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro, which has a 10.1-inch quad HD display with a 70-foot projector that rotates 180 degrees. Lenovo is playing up its capability to be the only device you need to host a movie night, with 18 hours of battery life.

yoga tab 3 10 Lenovo
Lenovo is clearly committed to putting a projector in the hinge of its tablets.

There’s also a 13 MP rear camera and 5 MP front lens. The Pro model also has an Atom X 5-Z8500 processor with up to 2.24 GHz of performance. It comes with 16 or 32GB of storage with a microSD slot for up to 128GB of additional space.

Accompanying the Yoga Tab 3 Pro is the the 8- and 10-inch versions of the Yoga Tab 3, which also have a 180 degree rotatable camera, up to 20 hours of battery life, LTE support and the ability to capture a photo with hand gestures.

Also, the kickstand includes a hole in the middle so you can hang the tablet, which could make for a makeshift method to use it in a presentation or for showing video.

All three models run Lenovo’s tweaked version of Android 5.1. They also have what Lenovo calls “AnyPen” technology, which allows you to use any conductive object as a stylus. The tablets are also loaded up with Lenovo software, including a game center, voice assistant, and needless McAfee security.

The Phab pushes the boundary of big screens

The Nexus 6 sounds like a reasonably-sized phone in comparison to the Lenovo Phab and Phab Plus. But such big phones are popular in some Asian markets, which is where these devices are headed with their 6.98-inch sized screens.

phab plus Lenovo
The Lenovo Phab Plus is a beast of a phone with a 6.8-inch screen.

Lenovo
The Plus model has a higher resolution screen, coming in at 1920x1080 compared to the regular model's 1280x720 resolution. They come in either dark gray, white, or gold, colors that look eerily similar to what Apple offers with the iPhone 6.

These giant devices could be a last hurrah for Lenovo phones, as the company recently reshuffled all its smartphone responsibilities to its subsidiary Motorola.

With the fairly respectable track record of the Moto G, Moto X and other handsets, it could mean a more recognizable brand of phones worldwide for Lenovo.

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Derek Walter

IDG News Service
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