Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Thinkpad vs. MacBook Air: all in the boot times

As of this morning, you can start ordering the new Lenovo Thinkpad X1, supposedly a competitor to the Apple MacBook Air. I'm currently on my fourth Lenovo X series, which is in some sense the original MacBook Air. It ditched a CD drive many years ago, offering a 3 pound device with its a style all its own (al beit black) when MacBooks (nee PowerBooks) were still 4-5 lbs at best and saddled with a build-in CD drive.

Unfortunately for Lenovo, the MacBook Air can't be beat because it has something even the new X1 doesn't have: the instant-on functionality of flash storage, just like a iPhone or iPad. That alone may be enough to get me to switch. The ability to flip open and start working on your laptop anytime can't be beat, certainly not by Windows which seems to randomly decide how long it's going to make you wait before it wakes up from Sleep or Resume.

Lenovo does offer "Enhanced Experience 2.0" which supposedly beats other Windows machines in start-up time. And there's some promise that the X1 will ship with an 80gB SSD with Windows loaded as well as a standard 320gB HD, allowing boot off the solid state drive. But Apple with flash memory is hands down a better offering. My switch to Mac may end up being all in the boot times.