Lenovo's latest flagship Yoga laptops are clad in leather

The Yoga 9i looks awfully familiar.


Around this time most years, we generally see an influx of news around this time as the world convenes in Berlin for the IFA electronics conference. While the pandemic has dampened that somewhat, companies like Lenovo still have announcements timed with that event. Today, Lenovo is unveiling a slew of new devices including a trio of flagship Yoga laptops — the Yoga 9i 14 and 15, as well as the Yoga Slim 9i. As expected, these will come with up to Intel’s latest processors, with Lenovo promising graphics based on Intel’s Xe architecture on the 14-inch models.

The Yoga Slim 9i is only available as a 14-inch clamshell, and as its name suggests, the laptop cuts a thin 0.54-inch profile and weighs 2.64 pounds. That’s thinner than Samsung’s Galaxy Book Flex but slightly heavier. The Yoga Slim 9i is also lighter than the new MacBook Air and last year’s XPS 13 2-in-1, and those all have smaller screens.

More interesting is the laptop’s leather exterior. Lenovo appears to have borrowed an idea from HP here, and the Yoga Slim 9i has a black leather cover “bonded to a sleek metal frame for durability.” There are three Thunderbolt 4.0 ports, which Lenovo thoughtfully placed on both sides of the laptop.

Lenovo also slimmed down the bezels here, calling them “microborders” that offer a 90.5 percent screen-to-body ratio. The IPS display goes up to 4K with 500 nits of brightness, and comes with Super Resolution 2.0 software that uses AI to upscale full HD video content to 4K in Windows Media Player and most browsers. The laptop also comes with an ultrasonic fingerprint reader that Lenovo says can work even with wet fingers, and if you prefer facial authentication there’s an IR webcam that supports Windows Hello, too. When you don’t need the camera, you can enable the electronic shutter for your privacy, and Lenovo’s system will also detect when someone is looking over your shoulder to give you “Glance” notifications.

The Slim 9i’s keyboard will automatically adjust its keyboard’s backlighting based on how bright it is around you, while its “Smart Sensor Touchpad” will vibrate when pressed “to recreate the familiar feeling of a real click.” An “Intelligent Cooling Mode” promises to optimize battery life as well, and the company estimates the Slim 9i will last up to 20 hours (on the full HD model).

If you don’t need something quite so thin, the Yoga 9i 14 and 15 are similar to the Slim 9i but are 0.57 and 0.77 inches thin respectively. With the extra girth, these two offer a physical webcam shutter, a stylus that you can dock onboard and can rotate along their 360-degree hinges. But there are some downsides: For one thing, the 14-inch 9i only has two Thunderbolt 4 ports compared to the Slim’s 3 (the 15-inch has the same trio).

While you can also get the 14-inch Yoga 9i in leather, the 15-inch is only available in all-metal. The larger 9i also packs different guts — it can be equipped with up to Intel’s Core i9 HK-series mobile processors and up to NVIDIA’s GTX 1650 Ti GPUs with Max-Q design. All three systems have similar IPS displays with support for DisplayHDR 400.

Lenovo hasn’t shared pricing information for its latest laptops yet, but given the Yoga 7i series starts at $800, it’s likely the 9is will come in above that.