I’ve had a lot of laptops over the years. I started with a Compaq tablet PC back in the day. Great machine. Ground breaking design and functionality. Tried Toshiba a couple of times. Nice machines, but they always had terrible batter life. Had one really nice high-end business class HP. I liked that machine. I’ve had three Dell’s, all crap. And I’ve had three Lenovo machines: a T410s laptop, an x201t tablet PC, and my most recent purchase, a Yoga 2 Pro.
The T410s was a nice machine, but suffered from poor battery life and a finicky touchscreen. Still, it had a great keyboard and took everything I threw at it for the better part of three years. When docked, it was a true desktop replacement. The x201t tablet PC has been the best machine I’ve ever owned. Great keyboard, awesome convertible mechanism, solid digitizer performance, tough as nails, and so on. It’s nearly five years old, and I still find myself using it from time to time. I wish Lenovo would have continued to update their convertible tablet PC line. Can you imagine a 12.5-inch X1 Carbon-like convertible tablet PC? I can. I’m drooling on my keyboard. As I look around at today’s tablet PC landscape, the Surface Pro 3 would be the closest thing available to replace my x201t; minus the solid ThinkPad keyboard, of course.
This brings me to my current daily driver, a Yoga 2 Pro with Core-i7 processor, 256GB SSD, and 8GB of RAM. I handpicked the Y2P after many long hours of research. I’ve been quite happy with the performance. It’s fast, has a beautiful screen with solid touch capability, converts to a tablet when I need it, and so on. I’ve had some minor issues here and there, mostly related to the QHD screen not scaling well and refusing to play well with some external monitors and projectors. Overall it’s been a great machine.
Until now. A couple of months ago I started having intermittent touchpad problems. For reasons than no one can explain, the touchpad would stop working and I would lose the onscreen cursor. Sometimes it would come back in a few seconds, but a couple of times a week I’d have to reboot the machine to get it back. Not the end of the world, but annoying. So I lived with it for a few weeks, but the frequency increased until it was happening nearly every day.
I tried all the recommended fixes that I found online, but nothing seemed to work. So I finally called Lenovo support. They did the cursory things that tech support always does, but ultimately decided that my machine needed to be sent to the repair depot. Ok, no problem. I had to send my daughter’s Lenovo laptop in once and everything went smooth. I was expecting the same.
Unfortunately, my experience has been anything but smooth. Lenovo had my Y2P for about ten days total, including shipping time to and from the repair depot. On arrival my machine wouldn’t boot. After several hours stuck on the splash screen it simply froze and gave me a blue screen with sad face. I rebooted and tried again. Same result. I finally called Lenovo customer support and they were able to get my laptop up and running. One problem, no touchpad. That’s right, my Y2P wouldn’t recognize that it had a touchpad. No matter what tech support did, they couldn’t get the touchpad to work. So back to the repair depot we go.
Fast forward another ten days. My Y2P arrives on my doorstep late yesterday afternoon. I unbox it this morning and hit the power button. By this point I couldn’t wait to have my lightning fast laptop back. I’ve been using my x201t in place of my Y2P for nearly a month. While the x201t is a great machine in its own right, it’s getting a little long in the tooth, i.e. it’s slow and has terrible battery life.
And then the unthinkable happened, a repeat of ten days earlier. I can’t tell you how frustrating it was to call Lenovo customer support and jump through a bunch of hoops only to be told that my Y2P has to go back to the repair depot again.
The biggest issue for me is that both Repair Depot Reports say that the problem was identified, resolved, and tested to ensure quality. I call shenanigans. How is it possible that my machine was tested to ensure a quality repair when it won’t boot, and has no touchpad? The repair report indicates that the only thing done to my laptop was “Operating System Reload”, and it’s obvious to me that they did little else.
I’m genuinely angry with Lenovo. I’ve always experienced nothing but greatness from them and their products. But it’s clear that the company has given way to cost cutting measures over the past several months; bloatware, spyware, forums full of people frustrated with buggy products, etc. This experience has given me time to think about the equipment I buy. Am I giving Lenovo my business based on nothing more than what the company used to be? I think I am. For now I’m done with Lenovo. They’ve lost my business. I doubt they care, but for me it’s a major decision. I’ve been using Lenovo machines for a long time, but that’s over. My next laptop and/or tablet will come from someone else.