Foldables are currently one of the hottest device categories, and Asus is jumping on the bandwagon with a fascinating take on laptops with the Zenbook 17 Fold. It’s a versatile machine that offers plenty of options for a variety of uses.

Similar to foldable phones, you’ll need to pay a premium to enjoy all of its quirky and unique features. It’s not a device for everyone, but you’ll have to agree that it’s a step toward the future of mobile computing.

Pricing and Availability

The Asus Fold 17 is indeed a unique laptop. There’s only one model available, and it costs $3,499 / AED 12,999. For now, there’s only one clear competitor, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold, which is significantly more affordable.

Knowing Asus and its knack for innovation, the Zenbook 17 Fold offers a lot more- especially when it comes to design, build quality, and display.

Specs you should know

Dimensions378.5 x 287.6 x 8.7 mm
Weight1.50 kg 
Screen Size17.3-inch OLED DisplayTouchscreen
Screen Refresh Rate60 Hz
Display Resolution2560 x 1920 pixels
Aspect Ratio4:3
ProcessorIntel Core i7-1250U1.1 GHz up to 4.7 GHz
GraphicsIntel Iris Xe Graphics
Memory16GB LPDDR5
Storage1TB M.2 NVMe PCIe 4.0 Performance SSD
Operating SystemWindows 11 HomeWindows 11 Pro
Battery75 Wh 4-cell Li-ion
Camera5.0 MP camera with IR function
Available Ports2 x Thunderbolt ports (display and power)1 x 3.5mm Combo Audio jack
AudioBuilt-in Harman/Kardon speakersBuilt-in array microphone
Connectivity OptionsUp to Wi-Fi 6EUp to Bluetooth 5

Design

The one thing that stands out upon seeing the Asus Zenbook 17 Fold is its unique design. However, it’s not immediately clear since it looks like any other laptop in its folded state. Opening it up will reveal its hidden features, especially the 17.3-inch display.

Its folding nature allows you to use it in up to six different configurations, including one with a keyboard. Unfolding it to tablet mode makes it one of the largest slates you can get at 17 inches.

Since it folds in the center, the Fold 17 needs thick bezels to support the hinge. Folding it in half makes it a lot more compact and portable. Using it in the landscape orientation allows you to use it like a book and is handy when reading ebooks.

Flipping it to portrait mode will enable you to use it like a regular laptop by attaching the keyboard on the bottom half. It turns into a 12.5-inch laptop that you can use for everyday computing.

Display

The Asus Zenbook 17 Fold’s display is its standout feature with a 17-inch OLED screen and comes with the highest quality panel you’ll get on a mobile device. It delivers vibrant and crisp colors with excellent detail, allowing you to see elements you won’t see on other laptops.

Its color accuracy is among the best, with a 100% DCI-P3 gamut. It also scores high on AdobeRGB coverage, making it an excellent on-the-go machine for creative professionals.

The crease is always a detail that comes up with foldable devices, and in the case of the Fold 17, there is one but it’s not extremely noticeable. You’ won’t’ll likely forget about it when using the display as a touchscreen.

One of the downsides of its extra-large display is its 4:3 aspect ratio. It can appear boxy, and your videos will have bars on both sides. You might be tempted to fold it to get a 16:9 ratio, but you’ll have to settle watching on a smaller 12-inch screen.

Performance

The Zenbook 17 Fold relies on the Intel Core i7-1250U for its processing power. It’s an efficient chip that offers plenty of power for most users. It also comes with Intel Iris Xe graphics, which should be enough for typical productivity workloads. With 16GB of DDR5 RAM, the laptop is no slouch either and can easily handle multitasking, light photo editing, and even gaming.

Internal storage for the Zenbook 17 Fold won’t be much of a problem as it comes with a built-in 1TB SSD. That should be plenty, especially with more users opting for cloud options.

Features to Look Out For

To pair with its large screens, Asus has also added quad stereo speakers to the Zenbook 17 Fold. The speakers are tuned by Harman Kardon with Dolby Atmos support, making it a great device for consuming lots of content.

Asus does include a dedicated keyboard accessory that’s lightweight and easy to set up. It connects through Bluetooth and attaches seamlessly to the laptop’s bottom half using magnets.

The keyboard accessory also includes a small but responsive trackpad that supports Windows 11 gestures for easy navigation. You do need to charge the entire accessory, but it lasts longer than the laptop. 

Battery and Charging

Since the Zenbook 17 Fold comes with a big screen, Asus has used that space with a large battery. The laptop sports a 75Wh cell that delivers around 9 to 10 hours of use. It can comfortably last an eight-hour workday without the need to charge.

Asus has also included a 65W fast-charging capability so that you can add extra hours with a quick 15-minute charge. 

Wrap Up

The Asus Zenbook 17 Fold is an excellent representation of the future of laptops. The flexibility that it offers is unmatched and comparing it to the mainstream 2-in-1s may seem unfair. The Fold can transform from a content consumption tablet to an ultraportable laptop in seconds.

The most glaring downside to the Zenbook 17 Fold is its price tag. It’s well-suited to enthusiasts at the moment, but it should pave the way for foldable devices to go mainstream in the laptop space.

Abbas Jaffar Ali
Abbas Jaffar Ali

Abbas has been covering tech for more than two decades- before phones became smart or clouds stored data. He brought publications like CNET, TechRadar and IGN to the Middle East.

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