It’s been less than six months since ZDNet reviewed the Lenovo Yoga 720, the then-latest version of its popular convertible laptop. But as highly thought of as that hybrid was, Lenovo is already back at MWC with an upgraded version.
Predictably dubbed the Yoga 730 series, the new notebooks include a couple of notable updates for 2018. This includes the use of Intel’s latest Core processors, graduating from 2017’s seventh-generation CPUs. In addition to a performance boost of up to 40 percent due to the new Kaby Lake chips, the 15-inch version is now 13 percent lighter. One spec that hasn’t been updated is the optional graphics card for that 15-inch model, which remains the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050.
Despite already being equipped with Microsoft’s Cortana virtual assistant as part of the Windows 10 operating system, the new Yoga 730 has been given an additional voice in the form of Amazon’s Alexa, Lenovo delineates their roles clearly in a blog post — Cortana is strictly business, while Alexa handles more entertaining tasks.
As with its 720 predecessor, the Yoga 730 comes in 13-inch and 15-inch sizes, with pricing starting around $880 and $900, respectively, when they become available in April. In addition to pricier configurations with Core i7 processors instead of Core i5 and the GeForce GTX 1050 upgrade for the 15-inch edition, you can also get the optional Active Pen 2 stylus to write or draw directly on the screen via Windows Ink technology.
If that’s too rich for your blood, but you like the looks of the Yoga’s flexibility, Lenovo has you covered with the addition of the Flex 14 (known as the Yoga 530 outside the U.S.). It splits the difference between the two 730 models, coming only in a 14-inch size with a full HD touchscreen display (as opposed to the 730’s optional 4K screen). It lacks Alexa support and its discrete graphics option is the GeForce MX130, but it does feature eighth-generation Core chips like its more expensive brethren and like the 13-inch Yoga 730, its Rapid Charge technology can provide two hours of battery life from just 15 minutes of charging.
For those who can live without the niceties of the Yoga 730, the refreshed Flex 14 will also be available in April for a starting price around $600.