Last year Asus released the stunning, but incredibly expensive dual-screen ZenBook Duo on the world that proved to be quite successful at creating a unique and powerful new computing experience for its users despite its equally remarkable price tag. The company has announced that there will be two more of these laptops coming their way in 2021, with a revised 14-inch ready to ship later this month and a new 15-inch model planned for release in April this year.
If you aren’t familiar with the concept behind the ZenBook Duo, the laptops featured a secondary screen that was built into the top half of the keyboard (called the ScreenPad) that served as a second screen that could just about anything, from extra controls to power apps, shortcut commands for office or gaming or even just to watch something while you pretend to work on the main screen (yes, we know what you’re really doing with your workday).
The new models will take advantage of the new technology available to them as they get obvious spec bumps with the Duo 15 OLED now having Intel’s 10th Gen processors (up to a Core i9) and Nvidia’s latest GeForce RTX 3070 mobile GPU and the ZenBook Duo 14 featuring Intel’s 11th Gen processors (a Core i7 or a Core i5) with Iris Xe integrated graphics (and you can add an Nvidia GeForce MX450 GPU as well). The CPUs are not the latest models available but remain extremely powerful with decent graphical power thorough.
Along with the needed speed bumps though the laptops will also feature an enhanced design that will provide a greater tilting angle to the secondary display along with a new hinge design that Asus says is 30 percent smaller, and a smaller fan size. Asus has also upgraded the ScreenPad software which should offer more features and apps, though the company hasn’t provided too many details on this yet.
Chromebook CX9 and ExpertBook B9
Alongside innovating the computing world with its second screen, Asus is also looking to provide a lot of extra durability to the laptop market with a new Chromebook CX9 and ExpertBook B9 that both have their most impressive feature being arguably their chassis that meets MIL-STD-810H US military standards for durability. Meaning they should comfortably survive a game of touch rugby where you exchange the ball for the laptops, though quite why anyone would need that level of durability in a laptop is beyond me. Though I guess with both having a light frame weighing at less than 1kg, they’re expecting it be carried around and dropped a whole lot.
The Chromebook comes with a variety of processing, RAM and storage options making it highly customisable and also includes Harman Kardon-certified dual speakers, Wi-Fi 6 support and the usual Thunderbolt 4 and HDMI outputs. The laptop also includes the Titan C security chip that Google has designed specifically for Chromebook.
It’s not as high profile a some of the other Windows laptops on offer but considering most Chromebook users are looking for value over raw power, this laptop range provides more than enough to go along with its military-grade durability.
Meanwhile, the Expertbook will also come with Harman Kardon-certified speakers and a new two-way AI noise-cancelling technology designed to make those needed Zoom calls even better. The laptop will also come with the latest 11th Gen vPro processors with a focus on security and remote management features with this laptop targeted primarily at business users.
Asus did announce some other enhancements coming across their range, including new Vivobook models that will both get the benefit of newer intel components that will provide both improved power and increased battery life. All these new models should be available within the first quarter of 2021, with pricing details to be revealed closer to the time.
Last Updated: January 15, 2021