Mobile desktops aim to make it easy to enjoy portability and touch friendliness without giving up the benefits of large displays you’re used to from desktops. With intriguing options at different sizes, the 21.5-inch Lenovo Horizon 2e for $750 and the 18.4-inch Dell XPS 18 for $650 are both great values on sale right now.
Lenovo’s Horizon 2e (pictured above) is the larger of the two, offering a focus on multimedia usage at the cost of some portability. The 21.5-inch 1920×1080 touch display gives you a sharp picture, and Lenovo’s Aura interface makes it easier than ever to share media from your mobile device on the desktop. After downloading an Android app, you can simply place your phone on top of the Horizon’s display and effortlessly stream movies, music and more straight to the larger screen.
Lenovo has also included a strong set of connectivity options, including HDMI-in, which lets you use it much like you would an HDTV and hook up your tablet or other devices to watch what’s on them. While it’s too big to compare to a tablet or even a laptop in terms of mobility, it’ll still be easy to move around the house, as the Horizon includes a built-in adjustable stand (for a choice of “Table” or “Stand” mode), a battery life of up to three hours, and a weight of just over ten pounds.
As far as specs, this mobile PC includes a 4th-gen Core ie-4010U low-voltage processor, which will deliver a balance of mainstream performance and power-efficiency. 4GB RAM and a 1TB hybrid hard drive with an 8GB SSD cache give you ample memory for multitasking and storage, while also keeping boot and resume times low. In addition to that HDMI port, you’re also getting three full sized USB 3.0 ports, a multi-card reader, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC and 802.11n WiFi for connectivity. A 2MP webcam for video chats, integrated stereo speakers, preloaded multiplayer apps, and a bundled wireless keyboard and mouse combo round out the feature set of this Windows 8.1 machine.
Lenovo Horizon 2e Core i3 1080p 21.5-inch 2-in-1 tabletop touch desktop for $749.99. Apply coupon code BFRIDAYHORI for $300 savings.
Dell’s XPS 18 still offers a great multimedia experience on its 18.4-inch 1920×1080 touchscreen panel, but a key factor is its far superior portability. Weighing about half of what the Horizon does at roughly five pounds, it’s lighter than your average 15.6-inch laptop. With a battery life of five hours and a slim 0.7-inch thickness, this is clearly a sleek device that was meant to stow in a bag and travel with ease. Integrated “flip-out feet” make it simple to set it up at the angle that works best for your usage, whether you’re watching a movie, playing games or navigating with the bundled wireless keyboard and mouse.
Like the Horizon, the Windows 8.1 packing XPS 18 has a similar (if slightly less powerful) 3rd-gen Core i3-3227U ULV processor that offers a balance of everyday performance and battery conservation. With 4GB RAM and a 500GB hard drive, there’s enough memory for running multiple programs at once and storing your media. Centrino Wireless-N 2230 and Bluetooth 4.0 cover your wireless connections, and a pair of full sized USB 3.0 ports along with a multi-card reader handle the physical needs. An HD webcam, free 12 months of McAfee LiveSafe, and 5.1 audio support with Waves MaxxAudio 4 complete the spec list here.