Book One
Porsche Design's Book One hybrid laptop boasts of a stylish yet practical hinge design. Porsche Design

Porsche Design showed off its new invention at Mobile World Congress — a Windows 10 2-in-1 laptop called Book One. At first glance, it may seem just like an ordinary laptop with Porsche’s branding. However, a closer look at this portable computer will reveal a device that’s made to impress users with its unique and appealing hinge design.

A hybrid laptop may not surprise anyone at this point, given there are numerous offerings of this kind of technology available on the market. This perhaps explains why Porsche Design focused on creating a device that boasts a new type of laptop hinge, which makes it easy for users to flip the display to 360 degrees or even detach it from its keyboard.

The similarities of Book One with Microsoft’s Surface Book are undeniable when they are placed side by side. But Porsche’s hybrid laptop unarguably has better design elements, especially when talking about its hinge, called VarioHinge. It looks like some sort of a gearbox due to its stainless-steel cog wheels that are inspired by sports car’s transmission, according to ZDNet. Such a design enables the screen to be pushed all the way back without leaving a gap between the display and the keyboard. The same thing happens when it is closed on the front like a laptop. It doesn’t have some sort of gap because the hinge makes it easy for the display to land flush with either side of the keyboard.

When Microsoft introduced its 2-in-1 Surface Book, it took pride in creating a unique-looking flexible hinge. However, shortly after the device became available to consumers, many complaints surfaced saying the gap the hinge forms when the device is closed was rather unpleasant. Owners also complained the gap was collecting dust and dirt and that there is no way of preventing this from happening since its part of the structural design of the hybrid laptop.

Aside from leaving no gaps between the display and the keyboard, Porsche Design’s VarioHinge reportedly comes with small rubber stoppers that prevent the laptop from getting scratches when the cog wheels meet the flat surface of the display. Also, despite only showcasing a pre-production version of Book One at MWC, it’s already noticeable that the company wants the hinge to be sturdy no matter what configuration the laptop is in. This has led The Verge to believe Microsoft could be looking at this new device for inspiration on how it can eliminate the gap on its Surface Book. The tech site even went as far as saying that Porsche’s VarioHange makes Microsoft’s hinge design for its 2-in-1 device feel “compromised” or “poorly engineered.”

Speaking of its other specs and features, the Book One is really a promising device. It houses a seventh-generation Intel Core i7-7500U processor, 16GB of RAM, an Intel 512GB PCIe solid-state drive and a 13-inch display with 3200 x 1800 screen resolution. It also comes with three USB-C ports, one Thunderbolt 3 port and two full-size USB 3.0 ports. It even has an infrared camera for Windows Hello and a special digital stylus that has support for Windows Ink.

Porsche Design intends to launch its Book One laptop this April, but interested consumers can already preorder it from, as per CNET. It is reportedly priced at $2,495, which is not bad considering that the Microsoft Surface Book is selling for $2,699.