CES 2024: Lenovo Shows Transparent Laptop Concept

lenovo transparent laptop

Lenovo shows concept transparent laptop with virtual keyboard, items visible on other side of clear glass display

Lenovo on Monday unveiled a transparent laptop concept at the Mobile World Congress 2024 trade show in Barcelona.

The 17.3-inch ThinkBook Transparent Display Laptop Concept follows on from last year’s “rollable” laptop concept, whose display could grow larger or smaller at the touch of a button, with part of it being rolled up inside the keyboard portion of the device.

The new device’s display resembles a transparent pane of glass when turned off – having 55 percent transparency.

Objects can be clearly seen behind the display when it is in use, but at maximum brightness it becomes opaque.

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Image credit: MWC

Public conversation

The base of the device is a transparent touch-sensitive surface that can be used as a virtual keyboard or a drawing tablet.

The Beijing-based company said it has no plans to turn the laptop into a commercial product, although it has completed technical feasibility verifications.

Instead, it said it hoped the concept would start a public conversation about how such technologies could be used.

Lenovo added that it was confident that the laptop’s technologies would make it into commercial devices within the next five years.

AI object recognition

The laptop includes Lenovo’s artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities, allowing it to use a small rear-mounted camera to, for instance, recognise items placed behind it.

In Lenovo’s demonstration, sunflowers placed behind the screen were recognised as such, and the laptop then displayed a virtual butterfly flying around the real flowers.

The firm said the display could have augmented reality (AR) uses, and suggested artists could place something behind the screen and then trace it directly on the display.

Transparent displays are more difficult for laptops than TVs, because of the higher resolution required, although Samsung showed a 14-inch transparent laptop prototype as far back as 2010.

LG showed a transparent 77-inch OLED TV at the CES trade show in Las Vegas last month and said it plans to ship the device this year.