Stop with all the transforming, just decide what kind of device you want to be!

It seems that these days it is not enough for a laptop to just be a laptop, or a tablet to be a tablet. I'm not talking about the strange new breed of devices that are capable of running Windows and Android, or the rumors that handsets running Windows Phone and Android might see the light of day (haha! Can you imagine?). I'm talking about the devices that seem to be trying to become best friends with Michael Bay, transforming between multiple modes.

It's not really a new concept. We've already looked at Lenovo's Yoga 11S which can be bent into four different positions. The same company also has the Flex range which has fewer Transformer-like capabilities, but is still more than just your average laptop. At CES 2014 Toshiba decided to up the ante, taking the wraps off a 5-in-1 device.

Call me old fashioned, call me a stick-in-the-mud -- hell, you can call me worse than that if you like -- but what's wrong with a tablet being a tablet, a laptop being a laptop, and never the twain shall meet?

Sure, there will be time when you think, "yes, I really must rip the keyboard from this laptop, flip out the kickstand and watch a movie on my angled screen. No other method of viewing will suffice!" But seriously, how much better an experience is this than just watching in laptop mode?

You might like the idea of a laptop that converts into a tablet. But opting for a multi-purpose device almost always means having to make compromises. Why not just invest in a laptop and tablet? They're cheap enough these days and it is, genuinely, pretty hard to buy a really crappy product. The current fad for transform-a-devices is just that -- a fad. It's a passing phase that (I'm hoping) consumers will discover to be little more than a drop of marketing magic.

You don’t need these devices. A product with a rotation, detachable keyboard, a screen that flips around into every conceivable position is not fancy or clever, it's silly. It's the Ferrari of computers, indicative of owners making up for failings in other areas of their lives.

Not only do you end up paying more for the devices, there is more scope for things to go wrong. A detachable keyboard is all too easy to forget or lose. And more moving parts in the form of hinges and swivels means there is more scope for something to break.

Be decisive. Do you want a laptop or a tablet? Buy it! Feeling flush? Buy both. But don’t fall for these absurd hybrid transformers. No compromise, comrades!

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