Lenovo ThinkPad 8 Windows 8.1 Tablet Review

Design and Cover

As we mentioned earlier, the tablet is reasonably slim and light. The back is an aluminum shell that looks sharp (especially with the red accent by the camera and the LED dot on the “i” in “ThinkPad), but it’s also a little more slippery than some tablets we’ve handled. (That slipperiness is mitigated somewhat by the rubber edging.) The front of the tablet is covered by Asahi’s Dragontrail Glass, a challenger to the Corning Gorilla Glass on tablets like the Dell Venue 8 Pro. We found the display to have good multi-touch sensitivity (both tapping and swiping) and it was reasonably smudge-resistant, but nothing about the screen jumped out at us to show that Dragontrail Glass was obviously better (or worse) than Gorilla Glass during our review.

That said, the 1920x1200 LED-backlit display is extremely bright and sharp. High-resolution photos come alive on the ThinkPad 8’s screen, and video we streamed over Netflix was darn near perfect and beautiful. The tablet has an IPS display, which makes for very wide viewing angles. We had no trouble seeing video clearly at most angles. And, perhaps more importantly, text is crisp as well. Folder labels on the Desktop are easy to read, and text in browsers is also legible at default settings.



The QuickShot cover is a pretty slick accessory. It connects to the side of the ThinkPad 8 with magnets, making it easy to detach, but not easy to accidentally detach. When closed, the black cover fits like a glove and puts the tablet in sleep mode. Open it (which automatically wakes the tablet), and you can fold the cover back to prop the tablet up horizontally, thanks to a rubber grip.

The feature that gives the QuickShot cover its name is interesting, though whether you find it useful depends a lot on whether you take many photos on short notice. If you're holding the tablet with the cover open (so that it's against the back of the tablet), you can flip a corner of the camera back, where a magnet will lock it into place. This exposes the ThinkPad 8's back camera and simultaneously activates the camera app, so you're ready to shoot photos with that one corner flick. At $35, the QuickShot cover is a worthwhile accessory.  

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