I think Lenovo has a specific user in mind when it comes to the ThinkPad X13s, a business or power user that is always on the go. The 5G connectivity on this laptop obviously has a lot to do with that and why this is a fully Qualcomm-powered device. If you need to get work done you don’t want to have to go try and find a coffee shop or somewhere that has WiFi. With 5G connectivity you are always connected as long as you have phone service and when it comes to speeds it is more than fast enough for day to day activities. Recently I went to try a new coffee shop and the WiFi was terrible! I wish I had this laptop then as I could still enjoy the good coffee and get work done!
This all-Qualcomm design also allows for an extremely long battery life. Lenovo says you can get 28 hours on a full charge, in my testing that was closer to 20 hours. Even so, so that covers a 17 hour flight from NYC to Hong Kong. I’ve done this flight and I would have loved to have this laptop over my larger laptop with half the battery life! Running an ARM processor does of course mean that you need to run ARM-friendly applications. Your typical applications like FireFox, Chrome, Microsoft Word, Netflix, etc will all run no problem. For all those using Adobe applications I tested both Photoshop and Lightroom and they worked just fine. We were not able to run our standard PCMark 10 benchmark as it does not work on ARM. I think if you are seriously considering this laptop, be sure it will support the specific applications you are going to use.
Even if all of the applications you are going to use will work on ARM this laptop is a bit limited. You only have two USB 3.2 gen 2 Type-C ports, one of which is used for the power adapter so that is very limiting. If you really want to plug more than one device in you’ll have to carry a dongle with you. Also the display is limited to only 1920 x 1200 options. And you have to look at the performance of the processor compared to current Intel and AMD options. The processor will definitely get the job done and you aren’t going to notice any difference doing basic tasks like web browsing or word processing, but do any type of video editing or exporting and you’ll notice it.
I really like this laptop and the freedom of workspace that it provides, but it is not the laptop for me. After my workday I might want to do some gaming or other activities and this laptop is not going to work with all games given its ARM processor. On top of that both Intel and AMD processors are more optimized for encoding video which I do a decent amount of not only for work, but also making my own personal YouYube videos.
I do feel this is the perfect laptop for someone that is always on the go and needs something for Microsoft Office, Zoom calls, e-mail, etc. The basically always on capability of this laptop cannot be understated. The unit we reviewed is going for $1364 right now, which is a good price given the performance of this laptop. Overall ThinkComputers gives the Lenovo ThinkPad X13s an 8 out of 10 score.
– Over 20 hours of battery life
– Models offered with 5G connectivity
– Thin and light
– Webcam and audio keeps on getting better
– Very good ARM on Windows experience
– Some of your applications may not work on ARM
– Intel and AMD processors are better optimized for tasks like video encoding