Fujitsu LifeBook N7010 hands-on: Great mini-touchscreen deserves more software

Fujitsu's LifeBook N7010 with its curious "Touch Zone" secondary display could be viewed as a gimmick or as a realistic productivity enhancement: a 4-inch touchscreen embedded above the notebook's keyboard, it offers users a secondary display for IM chats, toolbars or media.  Laptop Mag spent some time with a pre-production N7010, and while they're not 100-percent convinced, the Fujitsu certainly seems to make some compelling arguments.

Presenting to Windows as a second, standard monitor (rather than a SideShow display), that means users can pretty much drag anything across.  Laptop Mag loaded up Hulu and an episode of The Simpsons, which resized perfectly and ran smoothly on the 4-inch screen.  Transport controls are overlaid over media and image slideshows, and are of finger-friendly size.

What still needs work, it seems, is the display-specific functionality.  While being treated by the OS as just another screen means it can be used for anything, ironically Laptop Mag found themselves wishing it had pre-loaded functionality tailor made to its abilities: an RSS ticker, for instance, or resized Windows Gadgets.  Of course, they're all software amendments that are well within Fujitsu's capabilities, so we're hoping the company – or an enterprising third-party – sees sense and delivers the goods.