I know there are a lot of people, myself included, who use an external monitor for their laptop. I use my external monitor in conjunction with my laptop to create two screens side by side. This helps create more space and allows me to multi-task when doing school work, or even laptop articles and camera reviews. Some people, with smaller laptop screens just use the external monitor and not their own smaller screen, because the two are hard to integrate together. Whatever your reasoning may be, the fact of the matter is that more space is always better when doing work. But, more space is not better when carrying the laptop around.
At this point you can get a 17” laptop, and that has a decent amount of work space, but for people, especially graphic designers and people with a multi-tasking nature of work, you just need more. Even if you don’t need more, its always nice to be able to have several things open side by side. With 17”, you can have maybe 2 windows open side by side, but that’s about it. Of course, you can (and at this point, have to) minimize and restore windows constantly, or use tabs (in programs like Mozilla Firefox), but even this can get to be a pain. Companies like Alienware produced 19” laptops, but this just wasn’t practical. It was too big, and weighed too much, so could not be transported well at all, thus defeat the purpose of the laptop.
So, what is the solution? Well, Toshiba has come out with a ThinkPad W700ds that solves exactly this problem. It adds a second screen to the laptop that can be easily transported. How in the world do they do this? Well, actually it’s quite simple, the second screen is embedded behind the first screen, and slides out from behind the screen to form a second screen, next to the first. Now, you have your original 17” screen, plus another 10” screen to add to the first. Definitely a way to solve the problem.
From the video reviews I’ve seen on Youtube, the second screen is definitely much smaller than the first, obviously, but it does work. You can fit one more window, approximately, on the second 10” screen, thus it serves its purpose. Well, at least it’s a start, I guess. Maybe I’m asking for too much, but it would be much nicer if there was a screen on each side that could be pulled out, giving you two additional 10” screens. Or just have one larger screen that could be pulled out further. They’ll get there eventually, I’m sure. Also, the screen looks a little odd, and could be integrated a little better, but again, it’s a start.
Right now the Toshiba is just an introduction to what is to come. From my above comments, you can see that I want there to be a little more before I go out and purchase a dual screen laptop. And as long as there is a desire shown in the public, I’m sure the technology will get there eventually. So, look forward to it, and hopefully, eventually, all laptops will have this capability.