Lenovo Announces its First Arm-Based Thinkpad


The laptop is the Lenovo ThinkPad X13s, which has a fanless design thanks to the Qualcomm chip according to Ars Technica. It boasts four Arm Cortex-X1 cores that can spin up to 3GHz, and four Cortex-A78 cores that operate at 2.4Ghz. A rep for Lenovo told Ars that it thinks Arm’s capabilities are finally up to snuff to the point where the company could use the technology in its Thinkpad line, which are typically high-performance laptops marketed to road warriors and corporate users. The rep said one can expect the new Thinkpad to perform about on-par with a system that has an Intel Core i5 CPU, so it’s probably not going to make anyone on Apple’s custom silicon team break out in a sweat anytime soon.

Lenovo’s thin-and-light X13s. (Image: Lenovo)

The laptop is a thin-and-light, sporting a 13.3″ IPS panel and weighing just 2.53lbs at 0.53 inches thick. Lenovo says it’s able to achieve record-breaking battery life despite having fielding only a 49 WHr battery. Also, Lenovo clarifies that its battery life claims are “approximations,” but they are “based on continuous 1080p video playback on the latest update of Windows 11 (with 150 nits brightness and default volume level).” Anyone using a laptop in a well-lit room will likely prefer a brighter screen than 150 nits.

Other standout features include WiFi 6E, & optional 5G mmWave, as well as an “AI-based webcam.” This so-called smart camera offers attention-tracking for better power management, and will even let you login to the laptop while wearing a face mask. Though those sound like welcome features, the camera can also recognize your posture and offer suggestions to improve it, as well as remind you it’s time to take a break if you’ve been sitting in front of it for too long.

Since its an Arm-based laptop not all software will run natively on it, but Ars reports that it will support Windows 365, Zoom, and Sophos. Other apps will require emulation to work, which usually reduces performance, but Lenovo says it’s working with a large portfolio of software vendors to get their apps to run natively on the platform, including web browsers, collaboration tools, and virtual meeting apps, among others. As far as connectivity goes, it will only offer two USB-C Gen 2 ports for expansion, with one allotted for charging the device. There’s an option SIM slot for 5G and a Kensington Lock port, as well. Lenovo notes that 32GB of LPDDR4x 4267Mhz RAM is the maximum amount, and it’s soldered to the motherboard. Pricing starts at $1,099 and it should launch in May.

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