Lenovo’s Miix2: 8in Windows 8.1 tablet running Bay Trail

Lenovo has unveiled an 8in tablet running Windows 8.1, the Miix2.

The company first showed off the device at Computex earlier this year, and now says the tablet will be available to buy in the UK in November for £270 inc VAT.

The Miix2 is also likely to be one of the faster compact tablets running Windows 8, since it’s also one of the first to feature Intel’s new Bay Trail chips. Intel has promised a huge boost to devices running its new chips compared with those running the older Clover Trail processors, and Lenovo claims the Miix2’s hardware “separates it from the tablet pack”.

The Miix2 features an 8in, 16:10 display with a 1,280 x 800 screen resolution. It runs Intel’s quad-core Bay Trail T processor and features 2GB of RAM paired with 128GB of flash storage. That’s expandable by up to 32GB through a microSD slot, or 64GB if you’re a US customer. There’s also a 2-megapixel front-facing camera and a 5-megapixel rear snapper. The device weighs 350g and is 8.35mm thick. Lenovo didn’t release details on battery life.

The Miix2 comes as Windows 8.1 hits general release, and comes pre-installed with Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013. There’s also a stylus and detachable, protective cover to buy separately, although Lenovo hasn’t revealed a price.

Rival compact tablets

The Miix2 is likely to mark the start of a flurry of devices running Windows 8.1, with Toshiba and Acer already releasing rival compact tablets.

After its first Windows 8 compact tablet was panned by reviewers, Acer has just released the Iconia W4, now running Intel’s Bay Trail chips and preinstalled with Windows 8.1.

The Iconia W4 features an IPS display with a 1,280 x 800 resolution, plus 32GB or 64GB of on-board storage. There’s also a micro-USB socket and a micro-HDMI port.

The device will cost $330 for the 32GB version or $380 for 64GB, and will initially go on sale in the US and Japan in November. The company hasn’t revealed a UK price or release date.

Toshiba’s Encore arrived last month and costs only £250, and also features Intel’s Bay Trail architecture, although it’s heavier and thicker than the Miix2.

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