The 2 in 1 tablets are basically keeping the whole tablet market afloat, considering its recent slowdown of growth. Intel is a big player in the slate market and thus its new reference design for 2 in 1 models is something we’d certainly like to analyze.
We’re dealing here with a reference design for the Chinese market, an updated version of the reference slates we already had. The chip maker recommends using low power Intel Core m3 Skylake CPUs, with screen sizes that range from 9.7 inches to 12.5 inches. Heat sinks are also mentioned, as well as case materials that will do their best to dissipate heat, in order to keep designs fanless.
The reference model also has suggestions for USB Type C connectors and cameras with support for Windows Hello. The included USB Type C 3.1 port allows tablet users to plug in a power adapter, as well as external display, keyboard, mouse or flash drive into the same port. Intel also recommends USB or MIPI cameras with IR sensors and IR LEDs for facial recognition.
There’s a lot of wiggle room for the specs of the reference tablets. You can get them with anywhere between 1 GB or 8 GB of RAM and between 32 GB and 256 GB of storage (eMMC 5.0 or SSD). Things will get interesting this year!