What is a 2 in 1 laptop and why is it good for students?

If you can’t decide between a laptop and a tablet, then a 2 in 1 may be the best computer for you…

15 Jul 2018


What is a 2 in 1

What is a 2 in 1 laptop?

At first glance a 2 in 1 might look like a regular laptop. But look again, and it’s transformed into a touchscreen tablet.

On some models, the screen can be detached from the keyboard, while others have a keyboard that folds 360-degrees around the device. Most 2 in 1s come with Windows 10, which is specifically designed for touchscreens.


Why are 2 in 1s great for students?

Laptops and tablets meet different needs. 2 in 1s give you the best of both worlds without having to buy two devices.

Use it in laptop mode for writing essays, preparing presentations, creating spreadsheets and taking notes during lectures.

Then switch to use it as a tablet for watching catch-up TV, researching essays, giving presentations, online shopping, reading news articles and Facebooking.

Here are some things to consider when choosing a 2 in 1 laptop for uni…

Hinged or detachable

1. Hinged or detachable?

Hinged 2 in 1 laptops look and feel like a premium laptop. They have larger screens (perfect for presentations) and more powerful processors.

Lenovo Yoga 530

The Lenovo Yoga 530 is one of the best value-for-money 2 in 1 laptops available. The AMD Ryzen™ Accelerated Processing Unit delivers power, performance and speed, and the Full-HD display and Dolby Audio™ Premium sound are perfect for watching movies.

Detachable 2 in 1 laptops give you the freedom to use or carry around the tablet independently of the keyboard. They usually have smaller screens than hinged models and often have less powerful processors.

Acer switch 3

Use the Acer Switch 3 as a laptop for essays or just carry the tablet around and jot down notes or sketches with an active pen. The snap-on full-size keyboard can be ergonomically positioned for comfortable typing.



2. Will you be using it around campus?

If you’re going to be carrying your 2 in 1 around all day, you’ll want a computer with a long battery life and a slim, lightweight design.

Dell XPS 15

The Dell XPS 15 is the smallest, thinnest and most powerful 2 in 1 in its class. It’s 8th Generation Intel Core i5 processor will make light work of the most demanding computing tasks and the 15-hour battery life will take you from lectures to the library to movie night without needing charging.


3. Will you be using it to give presentations?

Giving presentations as part of your degree? A 2 in 1 laptop can be a great tool.

Surface Book 2The screen on the Microsoft Surface Book 2 can be removed and reattached with the back of the screen facing the keyboard, allowing you to discreetly click through slides. And with Windows Ink you can sketch out ideas on the screen for your group to see.


4. How much power do you need?

Your computer’s processor acts as its brain. The more powerful it is, the more you can do on your 2 in 1.

Cheaper 2 in 1 laptops often come with an Intel Celeron or Premium processor. These are more than powerful enough for surfing the web and writing essays, but you may struggle with more demanding tasks such as video and photo editing or gaming.

If you’re going to be multi-tasking on your laptop — for example, editing photos, working in Microsoft Office, streaming Spotify and browsing webpages all at the same time – it’s worth going for a higher-powered Intel Core processor.

What’s the difference between Intel Core i3, i5, i7 and i9 processors?

HP Spectre x360

With an Intel Core i7 processor and 8GB of RAM, the HP Spectre x360 is built for performance. Complex video editing is quick and easy and the 4K Ultra HD screen is perfect for photo editing and creative projects.

Buy the HP Spectre x360


5. Do you want to watch TV and films?

If you’re planning on regular Netflix binges, you don’t want to skimp on screen quality. Look at devices with Full HD displays for a crisp, colourful picture.

The Quad HD display and premium graphics card on the Microsoft Surface Book 2 let you watch movies in vibrant colour and pinpoint detail. It’s also one of the few 2 in 1s that can handle games effectively and you can pair it with your Xbox Wireless Controller for gaming on the go.

Get the Microsoft Surface Book 2


Browse our full range of 2 in 1 laptops