A Very Familiar Look and Feel

Can the entry-level Yoga still compete in today’s market?

Released alongside the launch of Windows 8 in October 2012, the original Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 13 was a revolutionary device. While Microsoft's initial vision for a touch-enabled Windows may have not panned out exactly as they wanted it to, people still found utility in 2-in-1 devices like the Yoga. In the proceeding years, similar devices from companies like HP and Dell have arose, but consumers ultimately migrated towards Lenovo's offerings.

The Yoga line has seen several drastic changes since it's inception in 2012. Industrial design changes like the Watchband Hinge introduced in the Yoga 3 Pro, and the spinning off of Yoga out of the IdeaPad brand into it's own family this generation with the Yoga 900 point towards the longevity of this 2-in-1 design.

Today we are taking a look at the most affordable option in the Yoga family, the Lenovo Yoga 700.

For those of you accustomed with the previous Yoga notebooks, this design will probably seem familiar. Instead of the updated styling introduced in the Yoga 3 Pro continued to the Yoga 900, the Yoga 700 maintains similar industrial design to the original Yoga 13, Yoga 2 Pro, and Yoga 3.

While it seems like this design would be getting a bit stale at this point, the build quality is still extremely competitive when compared to the rest of the Ultrabook market. Despite the lower-end price range, it feels like Lenovo did not sacrifice at all on the materials or build of this notebook. Everything feels extremely well built, and there's nothing feels cheapened or like it will break in 18 months.

As far as the keyboard and trackpad of the Lenovo Yoga 700 go, there's really nothing surprising here. Anyone who has been paying attention to Lenovo's consumer laptops here will know what they are in for.

The chiclet-style keyboard is more pleasant than most to type on, but seems to suffer from short throw issues more than my favorite notebook keyboards. It tends to feel a bit more mushy than my MacBook Air or the Dell XPS 13, but after some time using the notebook I was able to adjust fairly well. I wouldn't necessarily choose this notebook to write a novel on, but for anything I do day-to-day it was more than fine.

The trackpad however, I did not have the same experience with. For a while I have been disappointed with the trackpad choice in Lenovo's consumer notebooks, and the Yoga 700 doesn't seem to change this opinion. Pushing down the trackpad to register a click feels very mushy and doesn't seem to register clicks occasionally.

The personally most aggravating aspect is the lackluster finger rejection. I tend to rest my thumb on the trackpad while using my index finger to mouse around and the trackpad on the Yoga 700 does not like this. As a result, most of my mouse movements ended up either not tracking or jumping across the screen.

For most people the trackpad won't be a major issue, I would just like to see this advance industry-wide to the level of some of the machines we've taken a look at lately like the Surface products and XPS 13/15.

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