Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2: Release date, price, and everything you need to know
Foldable devices are all the rage these days, but we have yet to see many laptops embrace the form factor. The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold was the first foldable PC on the market, and while it was marred by Intel Lakefield processors, the overall design was very promising. Now, Lenovo is back with the ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2, and this time, it’s made some big improvements to make it an even better PC in almost every way.
There’s a lot to unpack with such a unique device, and we can certainly see why you might be interested in knowing more. That’s what this page is for. We’ve rounded up everything we know about the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2, from specs, to pricing, and where you can buy one for yourself.
Navigate this article:
- When will the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2 be available?
- How much will it cost?
- What’s new
- Where to buy
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2: Specs
|Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2|
When will the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2 be available?
Lenovo announced the ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2 at IFA 2022, on September 1st, but availability isn’t going to happen until later. Lenovo says it will be available in November 2022, though dates can always slip.
What tends to happen, especially with business laptops that offer a lot of configuration options, is that only certain configurations are available at launch. You may not be able to find every possible configuration in November, but they should be available soon enough after that.
What is the price of the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2?
Lenovo has announced that the ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2 will start with a $2,499 price tag, which is certainly a hefty amount to pay for a laptop. However, this is also the same price that Lenovo charged for the first-generation X1 Fold, and it’s worth considering there have been some major improvements inside and out.
Foldable devices still come at a premium, and while they’ve been around for a few years at this point, these kinds of prices are still to be expected. For example, Samsung recently released the Galaxy Z Fold 4 smartphone, and that costs $1,799.
And of course, $2,499 is the base price. That number will go up if you want to upgrade the specs. Most likely, the base model will include an Intel Core i5 processor, and other specs like the RAM and storage should also be relatively low. However, we don’t have specific SKUs yet, so we’ll have to wait until launch to know for sure.
What’s new in the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2?
The first ThinkPad X1 Fold was the world’s first foldable laptop, and as tends to be the case with brand-new form factors, it had quite a few drawbacks. Two years later, Lenovo has made a lot of improvements, both in the design and the performance of the tablet, so there’s a lot to be excited about with this one. Let’s take a look at the highlights.
12th-gen Intel processors and more RAM
As we mentioned at the top, the first generation of the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold suffered from poor performance, especially considering the price. The device was powered by Intel’s short-lived Lakefield processors, which were specifically designed for foldables and ultra-thin devices, and they were actually Intel’s first attempt at a hybrid architecture, similar to what we see in Arm devices. However, the processor only had 5 cores, and none of them supported hyperthreading, so performance was very lacking.
Now, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2 comes with 12th-generation Intel Core processors from the U9 series. Intel’s 12th-generation processors also have a hybrid design, but it’s been significantly improved since we first saw it. These processors have up to 10 cores and 12 threads, and they can boost up to 4.7GHz, all of which is a huge upgrade from those Lakefield chips we saw before. Plus, these new processors have an increased default TDP of 9W, as opposed to just 7W in the previous model, so that’s also going to help performance.
And that’s not all. These Intel processors were also limited to a maximum of 8GB of RAM, which meant Lenovo couldn’t give you more, even if the company wanted to. Now, the ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2 comes with up to 32GB of memory, something else that’s bound to boost performance, especially for multitasking. All of these are big upgrades and they’re very much welcome on a device this expensive.
A bigger screen that’s more usable
Another big change with this model has to do with the screen, which is much bigger now. The original model had a 13.3-inch display, which is suitable for a regular laptop, but when folded in half, this only gave you a 9-inch screen to work on. That’s not ideal, even in cramped spaces, and it meant the keyboard had to be small too, since it’s designed to fit between the two screens.
The ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2 comes with a bigger 16.3-inch panel, which is a legitimately large screen for a laptop, but still reasonable. There are plenty of 16-inch laptops out there so this is still useable with the screen unfolded, but now, when you fold it, each half of the screen is a 12-inch display with a roughly 3:2 aspect ratio. That’s not huge, but it’s about the same size as a Surface Laptop Go, and bigger than many 11-inch laptops, which are still very common. This should make for a much more usable experience when you have to use the display in folded laptop mode.
With the larger display also comes a higher resolution, which now sits at 2560 x 2024. This actually makes it slightly sharper than the previous model, which was already sharp enough for its size. Otherwise, this is still an OLED panel with all the benefits that come from that technology, including true blacks, vivid colors, and a great HDR experience.
Lenovo has also put a lot of effort into improving and streamlining the design of the ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2. This new model is significantly thinner than its predecessor, measuring just 8.6mm when unfolded (versus 11.3mm), and 17.4mm when folded (versus 27.8mm). Due to the larger screen, it is heavier, but this reduction in size should make it much more portable when it comes to fitting in a bag. This is in big part thanks to a redesigned hinge and display panel that allow the device to fold flat.
Lenovo has also enabled a new mode for this device thanks to the redesigned stand. That’s portrait mode, where you can use the stand to hold the device up in portrait orientation, ideal for work where you want to see a lot of vertical content such as text. In this mode, you have the keyboard resting on a table, so you get the full 16.3-inch screen for any content you need to see.
Aside from that, of course, you still get to use it in laptop mode (where the screen is folded and the keyboard rests on the bottom half), landscape mode, book mode, and tablet mode.
As a result of the larger size and the faster processor, you get three USB Type-C ports this time, and two of them support Thunderbolt. The previous model had no Thunderbolt support, and it only had two ports in total, so this is a clear upgrade.
This new design also comes with an improved “full-size” keyboard that’s also backlit, and it includes the iconic ThinkPad TrackPoint, too. The TrackPoint can also be used the Communications Quick Menu App for quick settings related to voice and video calls.
On paper, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold Gen 2 comes with a similar webcam it its predecessor, which is a 5MP camera, including both an RGB sensor and IR sensor for Windows Hello. However, this is Lenovo is using a new Intel Visual Sensing Controller (VSC) to improve the camera. Specifically, the webcam can respond to the different modes you use the PC in, correcting the angle of the image and frame it correctly to preserve image quality in different modes.
Plus, it can also detect when the user approaches the laptop so it’s ready to use, as well as lock the PC when the user walks away. It can also let the user know when someone might be looking over their shoulder to spy on what they’re working on.
Where can I buy the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold?
With all of these major improvements and retaining the unique form factor that makes the ThinkPad X1 Fold stand out, many are probably excited to buy it. Since the laptop isn’t scheduled to launch until November, we don’t yet have a product link for you, but the best place to buy it will likely be on Lenovo’s website. We’ll be sure to have a link below when you can get it.
In the meantime, maybe check out the best Windows tablets you can buy if you want this kind of portable experience (though obviously not foldable). Or, if you’re a ThinkPad fan, check out the best ThinkPads you can buy today, most of which are more typical clamshell laptops.