A new Show Mode feature from Amazon is now rolling out to some Lenovo laptops. When you activate this, it will change your home screen to look like the home screen of an Echo Show smart display, in a similar fashion to the Show Mode feature on Amazon’s tablets. That means you’ll be able to do smart display things like controlling smart home devices, glancing at the weather and news headlines, and chatting with Alexa — you know, the kind of stuff you’ve always wished you could do on your ThinkPad.
The feature is currently rolling out to Yoga, ThinkPad, and IdeaPad PCs that have Alexa built in, and it’s available in the US, UK, Germany, Japan, India, Ireland, Australia, Canada, France, Italy, Spain, Australia, and New Zealand. Lenovo says it’s coming to more Alexa-enabled PCs later this year.
If you’re interested in trying it out, open the Alexa app (it should come up if you type “Alexa” into the Windows search bar) and press the Show Mode button.
Lenovo first announced this feature at CES 2021 with its Yoga Slim 9i. Chromebooks have had this feature for a while — they can act like a Nest Hub Max when they’re not actively in use, though I can’t say I’ve ever taken advantage of this as a frequent Chromebook user.
Really, Show Mode seems like it would be the most useful on a device with a tablet form factor, which may not always be around its keyboard and touchpad. It could be cool on the ThinkPad X12 Detachable, for example, though the X12 unit that I reviewed earlier this year didn’t come with Alexa. But hey, if you want to try this out on your clamshell, don’t let me stop you.