Meredith acknowledged there may be some apprehension about the new keyboard, and it may take time for users to get used to typing on a touch panel. The change may be similar to the time needed for BlackBerry owners to get used to virtual keyboards on smartphones.
Hard keyboards will still be needed, especially for heavy typists.
"If you're banging out spreadsheets, most likely this isn't the right product," Meredith said.
The Yoga Book won't immediately have optical character recognition technology for notes taken via stylus on the touch panel. The feature is planned for the future, Meredith said.
The Yoga Book will have 4GB memory, 64GB storage, an 8-megapixel rear camera, a 2-megapixel front camera, and a microSD slot for expandable storage. It runs on an Intel Atom processor code-named Cherry Trail.
Dual-panel laptops and tablets introduced in the past haven't survived long. Toshiba Libretto W100 and Kno, which shipped in 2010 with full-blown color screens, didn't stick around.
But Lenovo has done a significant amount of research and testing and believes the time is right to launch the Yoga Book.
"We wanted to make sure the experience hit the mark," Meredith said. "For those in the 20s and teens, there's not much reluctance to a touch-based keyboard."
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