Taiwanese tech maker Asus has unveiled this year’s refreshes to its Zenbook family of thin-and-light laptops, along with a sort-of-all-new device in the form of the Zenbook S 13 OLED. Strangely, Asus wasn’t the only Taiwanese tech maker to make announcements today which is either a meticulously planned Taiwanese conspiracy, or just a coincidence.
While a total of five devices were included in the virtual launch event, only two of those will be coming to South Africa, the headlining Zenbook S 13 OLED and a refresh of the Zenbook 14 Flip OLED. But those might both sound familiar, so what’s the big deal? Well, that’ll be the fact that the Zenbook S 13 OLED is only 1cm thick and weighs only 1 kg.
Asus’ most calming Zenbook yet
Earlier we called the Zenbook S 13 OLED ‘sort-of-all-new’ because while this is technically the first year that this exact device has existed, it’s essentially the same as the other Zenbook models. Just smaller, thinner, and lighter. Thankfully, performance hasn’t shrunken with the form factor.
The ‘new’ Zenbook S 13 OLED can be configured with up to a 13th-gen Intel Core i7 processor and comes with Intel’s Evo certification. The Intel chip is paired with up to 32GB of LPDDR5 RAM, a 1TB NVMe SSD, and is powered by a 63Wh battery.
Like most of its cousins, this Asus laptop comes with what the company has called an Asus Lumina OLED display. Here, it measures 13in, features a 16:10 aspect ratio, a 2,880 x 1,800 resolution, and a VESA DisplayHDR True Black 500 certification.
The other bells and whistles you’d expect to find on a high-end portable laptop are present, including an IR and 3DNR camera array, Pantone, Dolby Vision and Atmos certifications, and a Harman Kardon-tuned speaker system. All these features are wrapped in what Asus calls a “plasma ceramic aluminium” coating. We’re not chemists, but that sounds like Asus picked three random words from the glossary of a science textbook.
It’s dangerous to go alone
The Zenbook S 13 OLED was the star of the show, but it wasn’t the only device that Asus revealed. The company also announced updates to other members of the Zenbook family. The Zenbook 14X OLED and Zenbook 14 Flip OLED will also be refreshed with the latest Intel silicon, as will the Vivobook S 14 and 15 OLED laptops.
Finally, Asus announced a new collaboration with the streetwear brand ‘A Bathing Ape’ (BAPE). The result of this partnership is the unimaginatively named Vivobook S 15 OLED BAPE Edition which we’re sure the handful of people that are fans of the brand and also need a new laptop, must be really excited about.
We’re told the Zenbook S 13 OLED will be available towards the end of May or early June with a recommended retail price of R33,000. The refreshed Zenbook 14 Flip OLED is seemingly already available for R30,000.