Asus originally announced its new Zenbook Fold 17 back at CES earlier this year. The notebook is soon to be only one of two mass-produced foldable devices on the market and I got my hands on it. The company plans on releasing the new Zenbook 17 Fold soon in certain regions and while it is still too early to give you a review, I would like to share some hands-on impressions from using this fancy device for a few weeks.
Dubbed as the world’s first-ever foldable laptop, the ASUS Zenbook 17 Fold includes some hefty tech on it. Of course, there’s this massive foldable OLED panel that powers the experience and it packs an impressive resolution of 2560 x 1920. ASUS has also designed the Zenbook 17 Fold to be extremely versatile when it comes to its modes of use. You can use it by laying completely flat on the table, fold one side up and use the flat side’s virtual keyboard to type and prop it up like an easel on your table.
Watch the ASUS Zenbook 17 Fold in action below
There are nine supposed modes here to use by either folding the device or attaching the keyboard to it. How you use it is completely up to you and I love the freedom and versatility on offer here.
While these positions might not seem like anything new, the fact that the ASUS Zenbook 17 Fold packs a 17-inch display is phenomenal on its own and having this giant screen in front of you looks out of this world. When you want to pack it away, you simply close the notebook like a literal notebook and it goes from its 17.3-inch foldable state into a pocketbook-sized device.
The ASUS Zenbook 17 Fold also comes with a dedicated Bluetooth keyboard in the box which you can use for when you’re typing and working. The keyboard not only sits nicely outside of the device on the table but it also magnetically clicks onto the one surface area doubling up as a dedicated keyboard. The keyboard can also fold closed into the pocketbook so you don’t have to carry it around separately.
While using the ASUS Zenbook 17 Fold in its various functions I could not help but feel the inspiration coming from the company’s previous products. Like when the Fold is on the table folded and I put the keyboard at the bottom, it gave me serious ScreenDisplay vibes from the Zenbook Pro 14 Duo. Knowing ASUS, it is just a matter of time before the company puts two displays into this Zenbook 17 Fold too.
I use a tablet every day and getting around the ASUS Zenbook 17 Fold didn’t feel any different from say, an iPad Pro. Of course, that’s a good thing here. The entire experience feels natural and Windows 11 Pro does a great job switching around to all the various modes as I fold and turn the notebook around.
The ASUS Zenbook 17 Fold is also not shy of ports. In fact, ASUS has included everything you’ll need here including 2 Thunderbolt 4 ports and an audio jack combo. It is also easy to charge using the one Thunderbolt 4 port. Speaking of charging, this foldable beauty packs a 75Wh battery for an expected 10-hour battery life and boasts Easy Charge support.
When it comes to the internals, ASUS didn’t skimp on the performance. It comes equipped with 16GB of RAM and an Intel 12th-Gen Core-i7 1250U. It is also powered by Intel Iris Xe so your daily tasks and casual game from the Windows Store will run just fine.
But the real magic on this ASUS Zenbook 17 Fold is definitely the display and the company made sure to follow its industry-leading approach to display technology with this foldable panel too. The OLED panel is pretty impressive. The colours are vibrant and punchy, the blacks are deep and the HDR and Dolby Vision support make the content look amazing. ASUS says they test easy Zenbook 17 Fold 30,000 times to ensure the hinge is secure and the display stays in tip-top shape. After a week of use, I also barely noticed any sort of crease in the middle of the notebook either.
I also need to mention the speakers on this device. They are quite punchy and loud. ASUS has included a Smart Amp in the device which is used to amplify the sound and control the clarity. It makes watching content quite nice and even having it open for music is great during the day while I was doing other things around the house.
There’s also a pretty cool camera on the ASUS Zenbook 17 Fold. The HD infrared camera includes walk-away lock, a colour sensor to adjust the display’s tones depending on your surrounding and AI features that enhance your image quality when making calls with it.
Lastly, I need to talk about the design here. This device looks and feels so premium. The bezels are clean, the display takes the centre stage and the general product feel is great. ASUS also performed some magic sorcery voodoo with the Monogram logo that is backed by a floating sphere of some sort and every direction you stare at it from, it looks whimsical.
Either position you use and whichever way you look at it, the ASUS Zenbook 17 Fold looks premium. While closed it looks like a high-end notebook, open it is incredibly striking with its fantastic OLED display and even laying flat on the table, it is like peering into a window to another dimension.
ASUS has truly created something spectacular here and it can only help innovate technology going forward. While it is still too early to share a review on this notebook, I wanted to give you a closer look at it as ASUS starts to release it to the world.
Priced at R69,999 (in South Africa) and rolling out globally from Q4, the world’s first 17.3″ Foldable OLED Intel Evo-certified laptop features multiple modes for a unique user experience