Even before you open a laptop’s lid, you can imagine where it’s touchpad might be located. It’s perhaps the only thing that’s somewhat constant in all of the different notebooks made by dozens of OEMs. However, ASUS has gone in a different direction with its new ZenBook Pro 15. The notebook ditches the conventional touchpad in favor of a 5.5 inch Full HD IPS touchscreen display it’s calling the ScreenPad.
With the exception of the ScreenPad, the ASUS ZenBook Pro 15 is not that different from other professional-grade laptops. It can be configured with an up to 4K display, 8th Generation Intel Core i9 processor, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti discrete graphics, fingerprint reader, and DDR4 RAM. It also features 802.11ac Wave 2 gigabit-class Wi-Fi, Thunderbolt 3, and three USB Type-C ports.
The ScreenPad is where things get interesting. It uses a Windows Precision Touchpad floating over a 5.5-inch Full HD IPS display which means that it retains all of the functionality that one would expect from a touchpad, including four finger gestures while providing users with a whole new way to interact with their notebook.
It has a configurable toolbar at the top which can be dragged down to access the app launcher. The launcher is also configurable with any installed app. ASUS has also added support for popular apps like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint as well as third-party services like YouTube and Spotify.
That’s not all. The ScreenPad can also be used to mirror a smartphone through the ASUS Sync app and it can work in screen extender mode as well which allows Windows to see it as an additional display so users can drag any window over to the ScreenPad.
ASUS is going to start selling the ZenBook Pro 15 from mid-July with prices starting at $2,299.