This year, every tablet seems to have an optional keyboard to make it a laptop, and every laptop seems to have a 360-degree folding touchscreen to make it a tablet. Either way, there’s usually a compromise with these convertibles -the tablets’ keyboards often aren’t very pleasant to type on, and the laptops’ touchscreens often aren’t very effective. Read our Asus Flip UX360CA Review
The Asus Flip UX360CA Review breaks the mold with a touchscreen that’s really quite good. At 13.3 inches its 1920×1080-pixel Full HD resolution looks sharp, and our tests found it covered a respectable 83 percent of the sRGB color range. Brightness could have gone a touch higher, but with excellent contrast, it’s very acceptable. Push the screen all the way back so it’s lying flat against the keyboard and you have a Windows 10 tablet that, at 13.9mm thick, doesn’t feel too unwieldy – even at three times the weight of an iPad Air 2. The all-metal case, available in a choice of subtle colors, feels wonderfully solid, something we can’t say of most convertibles we see.
An attractive, flat design and low power consumption make up for a poor keyboard.
Unfortunately, the keyboard – despite being fixed to the screen – didn’t impress us much, with limited and spongy key travel that didn’t feel consistent from top to bottom.
Still, this didn’t affect our typing as much as the cramped layouts on smaller laptops. The large and responsive touchpad (important for Windows 10 gestures in laptop mode) was much more to our liking. Unlike some of its rivals, Asus has included a couple of full-size USB 3.0 ports as well as a new-fangled USB Type C connector and even an SD card reader. Ethernet would have been too much to ask, but fast 802.1 lac Wi-Fi is built in.
The Intel m3 processor struggled with our 4K video-editing tests, but that’s to be expected. It’s adequate for everyday work and web browsing, and some 3D games will run as long as you keep the graphics settings low. The m3 offers low power consumption: the ZenBook Flip’s battery lasted us just eight minutes short of eight hours’ video playback, which is excellent, and makes it a very useful travelling companion.
Whether it’s good value for money is another matter. We think a laptop should be able to run Windows 10 more smoothly, cope with more advanced tasks and have a better keyboard. You may find it cheaper – until 20 September, Currys is offering a 10 per cent cashback, and at the time of writing a discount code was also available. Other dealers will also be competing on price. If you do need a bit more processing power, Asus’ m5 version will cost you even more. But Its performance still falls short of a computer running Intel’s i7 processor, such as Dell’s convertible Inspiron 13 5000 2-in-1.
You could buy the Asus ZenBook UX305CA, which has an almost identical specification except for an even sharper 3200xl200-pixel screen. In our humble opinion, that’s a bargain, but the touchscreen Flip is a better device overall.
0.9GHz Intel Core m3-6Y30 dual-core processor • 8GB memory • 128GB flash storage • 133in 1920×1080 pixel screen • Webcam • 802.11ac WI-FI • Bluetooth 4.1 • 2x USB 3.0 ports • USB Type-C port • MicroHDMI port • SO card reader • Windows 10 Home • 13.9x323x220mm (HxWxD) • 1.3kg • One-year warranty
This isn’t the fastest Windows 10 laptop you can buy at this price, but it is beautifully designed
See also THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO…OLED laptops
Lenovo Yoga 700 (11.6in)
This smaller, lighter convertible has similar specifications, but the screen and build quality are inferior