Best 2-in-1 laptops 2021: top laptop-tablet hybrids

The best 2-in-1 laptops hero image showing a Microsoft Surface Book 3 being used by a woman on a desk


David Nield


Yasmine Crossland

Last updated

The best 2-in-1 laptops are tremendous transforming tools. When you need a laptop they’re a laptop; when you need a tablet they’re a tablet; and when you need something tent-shaped to deliver a presentation they can do that too.

The flexibility of a 2-in-1 laptop means it’s ideal for a very wide range of users: students and CEOs, families and businesses, people who work from home, people who work on site and people who work from pretty much anywhere. They’re usable in places where tablets just aren’t an option, and adding a stylus opens up even more possibilities.

In this, T3’s comprehensive guide to the best 2-in-1 laptops, we’ve reviewed every kind of device for every kind of user. We’ve worked on Windows 10 2-in-1 laptops and on Chromebooks; we’ve studied 2-in-1 laptops that are perfect for going back to school; and we’ve investigated the best 2-in-1 laptops for business users as well. 

If you’re not sure that a 2-in-1 is the right laptop for you, T3 also has dedicated guides to various different types of the best laptops, and one of those might better suit you.

For example, we’ve got a best gaming laptops guide that’s written with serious gamers in mind, a best lightweight laptops guide for those who want a laptop that won’t be a pain to lug around, and a guide focused on the best student laptops, too.

We’ve also got a dedicated best Dell laptops guide, so if you like the US maker’s systems (and we really do here at T3), you’ll find the best Dells right there. And for awesome remote storage and access, be sure to check out T3’s best NAS drives buying guide, too.

Lastly, if you’re thinking of a 2-in-1 laptop then you’re likely looking for some slate functionality. As such, before you do that be sure to check out the best tablets and best Kindle ereaders, as they may serve your needs even better.

Don’t forget to keep an eye on the best Black Friday deals. We’ve seen some spectacular deals on 2-in-1 laptops in recent Black Fridays, and with deals being announced throughout the Black Friday period – a period that’s now running into multiple weeks – there are likely to be big savings on 2-in-1s from the biggest names.

The best 2-in-1 laptops you can buy today

For most people, the Asus ZenBook Flip 13 is the best 2-in-1 laptop to choose.

1. Asus ZenBook Flip 13

The best 2-in-1 laptop for most people


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

With its full 360-degree ErgoLift hinge and minimal-bezel design, the Zenbook Flip 13 is one of the best laptops Asus has ever released. Befitting its namesake, the Flip 13 can be flipped between laptop, movie and tablet mode almost effortlessly, rated for at least 20,000 cycles. It feels solid and sturdy too, with a spun-metal finish available in three different colours. Our review model came in the Royal Blue variant, which looks fantastic with its rose-gold trim.

Tooled up with an 8th-gen Intel Core processor, this is average for a laptop, but powerful for a tablet. The tablet mode feels great to use, too, thanks to a responsive touchscreen and military-grade tested durable design. The only missing feature is a smart stylus, which would make using the tablet mode for artistic endeavours a bit easier, but there’s always the potential to buy a third-party pen.

We haven’t even delved into the brilliant audio quality courtesy of sound masters Harman Kardon, nor the well-designed keyboard that feels sturdy and comfortable to use. By far the coolest feature, however, is the integrated numpad. Hold down an invisible button on the corner of the trackpad, and concealed LED backlighting illuminates, transforming the trackpad into a full numpad, ready to tackle any and all calculations.

All of this, partnered with a really competitive mid-tier price point, makes the Asus ZenBook Flip 13 our top recommendation for the best 2-in-1 laptop.

Asus ZenBook Flip 13 vs Microsoft Surface Book 3: which laptop is right for you?

The best premium 2-in-1 laptop is the powerhouse Microsoft Surface Book 3.

2. Microsoft Surface Book 3

The best premium 2-in-1 laptop


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

We were hugely impressed by what the Surface Book 2 had to offer, and the Surface Book 3 is an even better proposition: while the design stays mostly the same, the internals have been given a welcome boost, and at the top end of the configuration options you can get a discrete Nvidia graphics card installed.

This is both a heavy duty laptop and a heavy duty tablet rolled into one (and running the full version of Windows 10 of course) – unlike a lot of 2-in-1s, it has a proper laptop style keyboard, but also has a screen that completely detaches as well. While we’ve listed the specs for the 13.3-inch display above, a 15-inch model is also available if you want a larger display (just remember that the removable screen is going to be that bit bigger).

Anyone interested in the best 2-in-1 laptop at the moment has to check out the Surface Book 3 really, but it comes at a high price: this is only for those with relatively deep pockets to consider. Even at this price though, we don’t think you’re going to be disappointed.

To discover even more about this system check out T3’s should I buy the Microsoft Surface Book 3 guide. To see how it stacks up against another premium 2-in-1 also scope out T3’s Microsoft Surface Book 3 vs New Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 comparison feature.

3. HP Elite Dragonfly G2

The best 2-in-1 laptop for work


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

If you need a laptop for hybrid working, you’ll need it to be light and convenient to carry with you, the HP Elite Dragonfly G2 weighs less than a kilogram and is about the size of an A4 notepad. Even its charger is small, only slightly bigger than the average smartphone adaptor. 

You’ll have no problems fitting it into your bag, but that doesn’t mean it skimps on power. This laptop has serious performance packed into it, with 16GB RAM and the newest 11th Gen Intel Core processors to choose from, it’s a workhorse that won’t let you down. 

There were a couple of small downsides, like the fact that it would have been good to have a more sophisticated webcam considering how much people have been relying on video calls recently. The battery life isn’t amazing either, it’s just fine.

Despite that, this is a seriously impressive laptop – it’s faster, more premium and even nicer to use than the first generation of the PC, the HP Elite Dragonfly, and that’s saying something! If you’re looking for a versatile, transportable laptop then look no further. 

4. Lenovo Yoga 9i 14

The best 2-in-1 laptop for streaming video


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

If you need a 2-in-1 laptop to stream TV shows and movies, the Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 combines an ultra-high-definition display with its own rotating soundbar to produce 360-degree audio. TV shows and movies are delivered how they were meant to be seen and heard. 

The laptop itself oozes class with a leather design on the outside and a glass touchpad integrated into the palm rest on the inside. You’ll also find a stylus garaged into the back of the computer. 

It’s not just stylish though, there’s plenty of substance too. This is a speedy piece of kit which is sure to cope with pretty much everything you could throw at it. The only real downside is that the battery life is average but that won’t be a deal-breaker for most. All-in-all this laptop will be well suited to productivity be that in business or academia. 

A seriously light and portable 2-in-1 laptop with a 15.6inch screen.

5. Samsung Galaxy Book Pro 360

The best 2-in-1 laptop with a big screen


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

Anyone who needs a laptop to get you through the workday, and then for personal use in the evenings should consider the Samsung Galaxy Book Pro 360. It has a big  15.6inch screen with a light and premium build quality, which is great for taking around with you. The keyboard features a separate number pad and it comes with the S Pen included too so it’s perfect for getting work done, no matter what that may be. 

Unlike other 2-in-1 laptops, it doesn’t feel awkward to use in tablet mode. To activate it, you just push the screen back by 360-degrees (hence the name) and it automatically switches it into tablet mode. The screen itself is super responsive and feels lovely to use with the stylus for quick sketches or note-taking. 

If you are a Samsung Galaxy users (be that smartphone or tablet) you can seamlessly transfer files between Galaxy devices, or use your tablet as a second screen. Plus you can control your smart home using SmartThings on the laptop, as well as locate all your Galaxy tech using SmartThings Find. 

It’s covered in vegan leather which makes it look more like a folder than a PC.

6. HP Elite Folio

The best 2-in-1 laptop with 5G support


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

Getting work done on the go has never been easier – the HP Elite Folio is compact, lightweight and it has 5G support so you can be connected to the internet wherever you are.

When it comes to performance it may not be quite as good as some of the other laptops on this list but it sure is one of the better-looking devices here. It’s covered in vegan leather and features a pull-forward design which means you can convert it into a tablet or position it at any angle without needing to pick up the computer and faff around with it. 

On the keyboard, there’s a docking station that houses the included HP Slim Pen so it’ll always be charged up and ready to go. And the camera has IR facial recognition to keep the laptop secure. You’ll also get pretty good battery life. 

Don’t expect to use it to play complex games or for more creative workloads like video editing because the processor just can’t handle it as well as some of the other options here. 

Shopping on a budget? Then the Microsoft Surface Go 2 is a top choice.

7. Microsoft Surface Go 2

The best budget 2-in-1 laptop


Reasons to buy

This is a very Surface-heavy list and for good reason: Microsoft’s forays into the 2-in-1 market have been a huge success, revitalising the company’s image as a serious hardware maker right when it needed it. For people who want to get in on this without paying handsomely, Microsoft has you covered with the Microsoft Surface Go 2.

It builds on what made the original Surface Go so good, adding a more premium-feeling design and a small specs bump to make sure you can get through all of the computing tasks that you need to get through. It also squeezes in a bigger-sized screen into a form factor the same size as the original Surface Go, but cutting down on the bezels.

You can eke out around five hours of use between charges with the Surface Go, and given its size and power, it’s perfect for everyday on-the-go computing. In your calculations about whether or not to buy this, make sure that you factor in the extra cost of the Type Cover keyboard in as well, which you’re going to need to make full use of this as a laptop as well as a tablet.

Get even more information and buying advice in T3’s dedicated should I buy the Microsoft Surface Go 2 feature.

HP’s Spectre is in a different league to many Windows laptops.

8. HP Spectre X360 (2021)

A premium 2-in-1 laptop that oozes quality


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

HP’s Spectres are very impressive hybrid laptops, and the 2021 versions are the best yet. This year’s X360 has 11th generation Intel Core processors, and the available graphics now go up to Intel Iris Xe.

The Spectre X360 is a very good-looking laptop and it’s built to a standard you don’t often see in Windows laptops: visually its closest rival may well be Apple’s M1 MacBook Pro. It’s beautifully made with a vivid, bright screen and a great keyboard, and as ever with HP it comes with a good selection of security options to keep your data safe. Battery life is around 13 hours and there’s a good range of configurations options for processors and storage. 

It can get a little bit noisy when you push it hard but that’s a minor niggle in an otherwise extremely impressive package.

To see how this system stacks up against another premium competitor, be sure to check out our Dell Latitude 9410 2-in-1 vs HP Spectre x360 comparison feature.

9. Samsung Galaxy Book Flex

An excellent Windows 10 2-in-1 laptop from Samsung


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

While the Samsung Galaxy Book Flex is going to set you back a substantial amount of cash, you get a lot back for your money – it ticks just about every box you could want to tick in terms of battery life, performance, screen quality, design and so on.

It’s perhaps the extras that really make this laptop stand out though. You get an integrated S Pen stylus that slots right into the casing, while the trackpad doubles up as a wireless charging pad. Then of course there’s the 2-in-1 nature of the device, which means you can use it in a variety of positions and for many different applications.

While the performance you get here isn’t good enough for heavy video editing or gaming, it’ll breeze through everyday tasks, and it’s perfect for office workers and students alike (that high price notwithstanding). If you think you’ll make use of the extra features, it’s well worth the investment.

10. Asus Flip 2-in-1 Chromebook

In terms of bang for your buck, the best 2-in-1 laptop running Chrome OS


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

Chromebooks lend themselves rather well to the 2-in-1 format: you can use them as a laptop when you need to do some serious work, but then you can also prop them up or fold them over when it’s time for some sitting back and relaxing in front of Netflix instead. In either scenario, the Asus Flip 2-in-1 Chromebook has you covered.

Specs don’t particularly matter when it comes to Chromebooks, but the Intel Core m3 processor and 4GB of RAM should handle as many browser tabs as you’re able to load up. Remember that Chromebooks can also run Android apps as well now, which gives you another way of using the tablet.

We really like the design of this 2-in-1 Chromebook as well, all subtle greys and thin bezels, and it’s lightweight enough to sling in a rucksack very easily. There are plenty of other models in the Asus Flip line, so be sure to check them all out in your search for the best 2-in-1 laptop around.

You know you’re getting quality with the Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

11. Dell XPS 13 2-in-1

A stunning a versatile 2-in-1 option


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

Very appealing looks, superb specs… what’s not to like about the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1? The standard XPS 13 is a fine laptop in its own right, but this 2-in-1 version folds right over as well – perhaps most useful in tent mode, when you want to prop it up to enjoy some video streaming content in the evening. You get a device that’s sleek, light, and capable of managing everything you need it to do.

As usual with Dell devices, a variety of configurations are available for your Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 – it depends how much money you’ve got to spend and what you need your laptop to do as to which one is going to be the best one for your particular needs. What’s true about all of them, however, is that they’re all very capable, very versatile, and very well-designed.

This is very much an option to consider if you’re more interested in the laptop rather than the tablet aspect of the 2-in-1 experience – the XPS 13 is absolutely one of the best laptops on the market at the moment, and the fact that you can fold it right over and use it as a tablet just adds to the appeal.

The Lenovo Yoga C930 is a very lightweight and stylish hybrid laptop.

12. Lenovo Yoga C930

A lightweight and beautiful 2-in-1 laptop


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

We’ve been hugely impressed with Yogas gone by, and it’s therefore no surprise that the latest Lenovo Yoga C930 makes an appearance on our best 2-in-1s of 2021 list. Ultra-thin and ultra-light, it’s a premium bit of kit.

From the generous 13.9-inch screen, to the top end i7 processor from Intel, to the roomy 512GB of SSD storage, there’s so much to like here. It’s not the cheapest of course, but that doesn’t mean this isn’t good value for money.

With a 4K resolution display, Dolby Atmos sound, and some rather sleek looks, we’re struggling to think of anything to put in the negatives column. The keyboard folds over rather than detaching, but it’s a minor niggle.

The Acer Switch Alpha 12 comes with an excellent kickstand built in.

13. Acer Switch Alpha 12

A convertible tablet that’s cool in more ways than one


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

One of the cheaper options in this guide, Acer’s Switch Alpha 12 is clearly influenced by Microsoft’s Surface Pro 4, but its wireframe kickstand more closely echoes HP’s Spectre x2.

It boasts a trick that neither of those devices can, though: liquid cooling. That’s right, the Alpha 12 is the first tablet that pumps a coolant solution around the inside to keep it running cool and quiet. It’s an innovative device that is offered at a surprisingly acceptable price, especially considering that its decent keyboard dock is included in the bundle.

Silver, shiny, tough and smart, the Switch Alpha 12 has more than a few tricks up its sleeve to earn its place on our best 2-in-1 laptops list.

14. Microsoft Surface Pro 7

One of the best 2-in-1 laptops keeps getting better


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

The Surface Pro 7 doesn’t change a huge amount from the Surface Pro 6, especially in terms of its looks, but that’s actually fine with us – there’s no need to mess around with a winning formula just for the sake of it. It now comes with USB-C, and as an added bonus supports the most up-to-date and fastest Wi-Fi 6 standards as well.

As well as the i7 chipset that we’ve listed in the specs above, less powerful configurations are available too, so you can tailor the Surface Pro 7 to your needs and budget. If you’ve got the money, you can certainly get yourself a 2-in-1 that’s capable of some serious performance – you shouldn’t have any trouble with lag or slowdowns on the top-end configurations.

If the Surface Book 3 is a little too bulky for you and the Surface Go 2 is a little too on the small and underpowered side, then get the Surface Pro 7 as the perfect compromise. The only caveat is that the Surface Pro 8 might really revamp the design as well as bump the specs, when it arrives.

Microsoft Surface Pro 7 vs Samsung Galaxy Tab S7: which hybrid is best?

Want to lean more towards a tablet experience, while still having solid laptop functionality? Then the Tab S7 is worth looking at.

15. Samsung Galaxy Tab S7

A great media tablet that, with extra spend, turns into a lightweight laptop


Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid

If you want something running Android that can do double duty as both a tablet and a laptop, then you don’t have a huge number of options at the moment. Of the options that you do have, we reckon that the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 is just about the best of them: sleek, powerful, and with the famous S Pen stylus.

You’re also going to want the optional Book Cover Keyboard as well, which helps you get much more out of the tablet. There’s 5G on board as well, plus a quality sound system put together in partnership with experts AKG. With up to three apps on the screen at once, Android has never looked so good on a tablet as far as we’re concerned.

The specs above apply to the 11-inch Samsung Galaxy Tab S7, but if you want something bigger and have a bit more money to play around with, then consider getting the 12.4-inch Tab S7 Plus instead – they’re both powerful Android 2-in-1 tablets that will last you for years.

How to choose the best 2-in-1 laptop for you

Convertibles, hybrids, 2-in-1s, call them what you like – these are essentially tablets that convert into laptops using keyboard attachments, and they occupy the middle ground between the two.

Fully fledged laptops with detachable screens are less common, but we’ve included them too. You also get laptops that don’t have detachable screens but which fold right over to become sort of makeshift tablets.

We’re continuing to see some really decent quality hybrids hit the market in 2021, and whether you’re looking for a lithe and luxurious 2-in-1 to take on the move, or are hunting down a convertible laptop to double up as a compact TV set, we’ve picked out the best options out there.
So how do you pick? It’s a good idea to think about how you’re going to be using your new computer, and thus how powerful it needs to be: that has a knock-on effect on price and portability. If you’re going to be spending a lot of time typing, look for a 2-in-1 with a substantial keyboard attachment. If you’re not, it doesn’t matter so much.

Remember that one of the best webcams will be a perfect partner to a 2-in-1 laptop.

Above you’ll find the very best 2-in-1 laptops on the market in 2021.