LAS VEGAS - It's not often that my thoughts immediately turn to Star Wars upon picking up a laptop, but that's what happened when I put the new Samsung Notebook 9 Pro in my hands.
Samsung really focused on creating a premium metal design that will stand out in a sea of lookalike convertibles. And based on my hands-on time with the Notebook 9 Pro here at CES 2019, they have succeeded in that mission.
The first thing I noticed about the Notebook 9 Pro, which will be available during the first half of 2019, is the diamond cut edges on the left and right side of the system. They sport a pattern that's reminiscent of Luke Skywalker's Landspeeder from Star Wars Episode IV. It's probably not what the designers were going for, but I appreciate the visual flair nonetheless.
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"Last year we focused on the lightness, but this time we wanted to focus on a design that shouted, 'Hey, pick me up,'" said Shoneel Kolhatkar, senior director for product marketing at Samsung.
The whole package weighs a fairly light 2.84 pounds and the footprint is a compact 12.1 x 8.1 x 0.55 inches.
Samsung Notebook 9 Pro Specs
|Row 0 - Cell 0||Samsung Notebook 9 Pro|
|CPU||Intel Core i7-8565U|
|Ports||2 Thunderbolt 3, headphone, microSD card|
|Size||12.1 x 8.1 x 0.55 inches|
Other highlights include a fairly bright 13.3-inch display with very narrow bezels (6.7 mm) and support for an Active Pen, which comes in the box. However, it's not small enough to be docked inside the chassis.
The upcoming Notebook 9 Pen is more premium, Kolhatkar said, because it has an S Pen that you can store inside the system, as well a lot of the same S Pen features that the Galaxy Note 9 has.
We didn't get a chance to try them out, but the 1.5-watt stereo speakers and Thunder Amp should provide plenty of volume. You should also expect up to 14 hours of battery life from the 55 WHr battery, though we'd wait until we've run this machine through our web surfing test.
The Notebook 9 Pro will feature a Core i7 processor (8th Gen Intel Core i7-8565U), 8GB of RAM and a 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD. It will also have 802.11ac Wi-Fi. The ports are pretty standard fare for a thin-and-light convertible, including 2 Thundebolt 3 ports with USB Type-C, a headphone jack and microSD.
But that's not what is going to compel shoppers to pick this 2-in-1 up. It's all about the design.