With 24% of the votes, the Best Business Notebook Brand trophy remains in the hands of Lenovo, currently the world’s largest PC maker according to IDC. In September last year, the Chinese company refreshed its ThinkPad E series notebooks; and at this year’s CES, the company showed off several new ThinkPad X1 devices, such as the ThinkPad X1 Carbon (2016 edition), ThinkPad X1 Yoga, and ThinkPad X1 Tablet. But Lenovo should be looking over its shoulders; Apple is getting very close with 23% of the votes.
Some call it notebook-tablet hybrids, some call it 2-in-1 notebooks. Whichever the case, such new form factor is only possible due to the multifaceted nature of Windows 8/8.1; and now, Windows 10. A new category we created last year to reflect the latest trend, the inaugural winner was ASUS. This year, our readers have once again voted for ASUS (30%), maker of fine machines like the Transformer Book T300 Chi, Transformer Book Flip TP200, and T100HA. Microsoft, which launched the Surface 3 last year, and more recently, the Skylake-based Surface Pro 4, is second with 26% of the votes. Lenovo, which launched the Ideapad Miix 700 and 300 last year, and new ThinkPad and Yoga models at this year’s CES, is third with 17%.
Apple’s iPad remains our readers’ most beloved tablet with 58% of the votes. In fact, it was only in September 2015 that we had new iPads, namely the iPad Mini 4 and iPad Pro. The iPad Pro, in particular, is a big 12.9-inch tablet with nearly double the CPU performance of the iPad Air 2 and a refined multi‑touch technology; it also supports the Apple Pencil that lets you write and draw fluidly like a real pencil, thanks to its full pressure sensitivity and tilt control. Sure, iPad sales have fallen, but apparently, it still outsold Microsoft’s Surface tablets in the last quarter. For those who prefer the 10-inch iPad, Apple is expected to officially unveil the iPad Air 3 next month. Samsung, which announced the Windows 10-running TabPro S just last month, is second with 15%.
According to the Camera & Imaging Products Association (CIPA), digital camera shipments in the whole of 2015 declined 18.5% year on year to 35.4 million units. Of these, shipments of digital cameras with a built-in lens (i.e., compact digital cameras) continued to fall “dramatically”, down 24.5%. In short, this is a market that’s really tough to be in right now. For this Readers’ Choice category, our winner is once again Canon, which amassed 40% of the votes. In mid-2015, we saw the PowerShot G3 X and the limited edition SG50 PowerShot G7 X; and then later in the year, the PowerShot G5 X and G9 X, both sporting a 1-inch-type 20.2MP CMOS sensor. And just last month, the company took the wraps off the PowerShot SX420 IS, SX540 HS, and IXUS 285 HS, 180, and 175.
In a nutshell, interchangeable lens cameras refer to both DSLRs and mirrorless cameras. After tabulating the votes, Canon emerges as the winner of our Best Interchangeable Lens Camera Brand category. To recap, in early 2015, we saw the entry-level EOS 750D and 760D, as well as the 50.6MP EOS 5DS and 5DSR. The compact mirrorless EOS M family also got a new member in the EOS M3; and this was followed up by the 18MP EOS M10 that sports a chic and casual design later in October. Thankfully, the DSLR maker hasn’t forgotten the pros, as we've just caught sight of the EOS-1D X Mark II, a pro body that features a new 61-point all points selectable AF system with 41-points cross type AF, along with support for 14fps shooting and 4K movie recording.