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Best laptops with human presence detection 2022

Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Yoga Gen6 Review
Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Yoga Gen6 Review (Image credit: Windows Central)

If you plan on having sensitive business or personal material on your laptop, getting a device that's capable of human presence detection is a good idea. Together with an IR camera and Windows Hello, human presence detection ensures that your laptop stays locked when you walk away from it or when an unauthorized user attempts to use it. The laptop will wake up right away once you return and it senses your presence. This feature works excellently, and as a result, many laptop manufacturers have begun to incorporate it into their devices in recent years. The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano tops our list of best laptops with human presence detection due to the fact it has excellent specs and performance as well as a great business-friendly design, but there are several other awesome alternatives available as well.

Best overall: Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central)

In our minds, the best laptop with human presence detection is the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano. It delivers excellent productivity performance thanks to its 11th Gen Intel Core i7-1160G7 vPro CPU, powerful Intel Iris Xe integrated graphics, and its availability with up to 16GB of RAM as well as up to 1TB of SSD storage. The 13-inch 2K display also looks gorgeous with great color accuracy, contrast, and a peak brightness of 450 nits, and will either be touch or non-touch depending on which configuration you opt for. The battery life clocks in at around 8-10 hours as well, which is a good result that provides all-day longevity. You can even get the laptop with 4G LTE or 5G if you'd like, allowing you to get online even when you're not connected to Wi-Fi.

Design-wise, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano is remarkably thin and lightweight, making it incredibly easy to take with you during travel. This makes it an excellent device for folks who need something ideal for frequent business travel. The keyboard and trackpad are both very comfortable to use, too, and dual Thunderbolt 4 ports are included for peripherals. Notably, the laptop also comes with a fingerprint reader as well as Lenovo's ThinkShutter webcam cover that you can use as a security alternative to human presence detection if you'd like. Overall, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano is everything you could want out of a business-friendly Ultrabook, making it our top pick.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano

Secure excellence

Reasons to buy

+
Great specs and performance
+
Excellent display
+
Excellent design
+
Additional security features

Reasons to avoid

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Pricey

Best 2-in-1: Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

If you'd prefer something convertible, an excellent alternative to the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano is its sister device, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga (Gen 6). The latest version of Lenovo's popular 2-in-1 features a i7-1185G7 vPro processor, Intel Iris Xe graphics, 16GB of memory, and a 512GB SSD. These specs are great, but what really sets the Yoga apart from competing devices is its display; the 14-inch UHD 4K touch-enabled panel has stunning colors and contrast, features an effective anti-reflective coating, and is capable of reaching 500 nits of peak brightness. In terms of battery life, the Yoga can last about 8-9 hours. Like the ThinkPad X1 Nano, the Yoga can also be configured with 4G LTE or 5G.

The design of the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga is similar to the Nano, though it's thicker and heavier. The keyboard and trackpad are both excellent, and you get excellent peripheral connectivity between dual Thunderbolt 4 ports and dual USB-A ports. Lastly, the Yoga comes with the same fingerprint reader and ThinkShutter webcam cover that the Nano does, giving you a valuable alternative to human presence detection if you need it. While it's generally more expensive than the Nano, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga is perfect for folks who want something convertible (or just want a higher screen resolution).

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga

Pricy perfection

Reasons to buy

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Great specs and performance
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Gorgeous UHD 4K screen
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Excellent port selection
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Additional security features

Reasons to avoid

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Can get very expensive

Best for creators: HP Spectre x360 16

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central)

People who need something a little more powerful than what you'll get with most Ultrabooks should turn to the HP Spectre x360 16. It can be configured with some of the most performant mobile hardware available, including up to a beefy 11th Gen Core i7-11390H, up to an NVIDIA RTX 3050 GPU, up to 32GB of RAM, and up to 2TB of SSD storage. Its 3K touchscreen is a winner, too, featuring rich colors and contrast as well as a max brightness of 400 nits. The battery life is just over 8 hours, which is quite impressive for a laptop with a 3K display, H-series CPUs, and discrete NVIDIA GPUs.

The design of the HP Spectre x360 16 is very flashy thanks to HP's standard "gem cut" style. The keyboard and trackpad are very comfortable to use and don't have any notable issues, and the port selection of dual Thunderbolt 4 as well as a single USB-A slot is nice, too. The 5MP Full HD webcam is a notable improvement over the 720p webcams you usually get with most other devices as well, making the laptop a great choice for people who do a lot of video conferencing. Ultimately, the HP Spectre x360 16 is a very powerful 2-in-1 that you should definitely pick up if you're a creator who needs a presence-aware laptop with muscle.

HP Spectre x360 16

Go all out

Reasons to buy

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Heavy-duty hardware
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Fantastic display
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Stylish and comfortable design
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Awesome HD webcam

Reasons to avoid

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Expensive
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A little awkward as a 16-inch tablet

Best battery life: XPG Xenia Xe

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

What if you need a presence-aware device with industry-leading battery life? Look no further than the XPG Xenia Xe, a thin and light Ultrabook that offers unrivaled longevity. It's no slouch in terms of performance, featuring an 11th Gen i7-1165G7, Intel Iris Xe graphics, and up to 16GB of RAM as well as up to 1TB of SSD storage. Where the XPG Xenia Xe differs from most other Ultrabooks, though, is with its display. Compared to competing devices that typically have screens with very high resolution, the XPG Xenia Xe has a 15-inch FHD 1080p touchscreen. It still looks good — the colors and contrast are excellent — but it is less sharp than the displays found on many of the other laptops in this list. The benefit of this, however, is that the XPG Xenia Xe has a stellar battery life of 14-15 hours.

The design of the XPG Xenia Xe is great overall, though the keycaps on the keyboard are rather small compared to what you'll typically find on most laptops. Still, the laptop looks incredibly sleek and comes with an awesome trackpad, as well as a great port selection of dual Thunderbolt 4 and dual USB-A. At the end of the day, the XPG Xenia Xe is a stellar Ultrabook that we highly recommend if you need something with supreme longevity.

XPG Xenia Xe

A laptop that can go the distance

Reasons to buy

+
Great specs and performance
+
Attractive FHD display
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Superb battery life
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Great port selection

Reasons to avoid

-
Unusually small keycaps

Best budget: Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7 14

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

The Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7 14 is the best option for folks who need something budget-friendly, as it performs solidly overall while still offering effective human presence detection at a great price. It's equipped with up to an 11th Gen i5-1135G7, Intel UHD Graphics (a version with an NVIDIA GeForce MX350 is also available), 8GB of RAM, and a 512GB SSD. These specs aren't great, but for light productivity work, they'll get the job done. The 14-inch FHD 1080p display isn't much to write home about, either, although it does offer stronger color accuracy, contrast, and brightness than most other laptops in the same price range and can even be configured with touch support. Notably, the laptop has an excellent battery life of 10-11 hours.

The design of the Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7 14 is just as high quality as Lenovo's more premium Ultrabooks, though the key travel is rather shallow. It's well built and comfortable to use overall, though, and the device also comes with a great port selection, including a Thunderbolt 3 port, a standard USB-C slot, and dual USB-A. The lack of a physical ThinkShutter webcam cover is unfortunate, but it's hardly a dealbreaker (especially since a fingerprint reader is included). Ultimately, the Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7 14 is the best device available if you need something that's both affordable and presence aware.

Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7 14

What a steal!

Reasons to buy

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Solid specs
+
Great FHD display
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10-11 hours of battery life
+
Affordable

Reasons to avoid

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Less powerful than other options
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Key travel is a little shallow
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No webcam cover

Bottom line

If you're concerned about security for your data and you expect you're going to be working in a public setting, getting a laptop with human presence detection is a great idea. This feature will keep your laptop locked down whenever you're away from it, preventing anyone other than you from being able to sneak a peek at any sensitive business or personal data you may have on your PC. Additionally, human presence detection also helps with maximizing battery life, as since the feature turns your display off when you're not nearby, your laptop will end up using less power throughout the day.

There are several different presence-aware laptops available on the market, and many of them are excellent. If we had to pick a favorite, though, it would be the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano. Between its strong specs and performance, beautiful display, and stellar thin and lightweight design with a ThinkShutter webcam cover and a fingerprint reader, the X1 Nano solidifies itself as one of the best Windows laptops on the market for people who need effective security. With that said, all of the options we listed in this roundup are great, and you shouldn't hesitate to go with alternatives like the HP Spectre x360 16 or the XPG Xenia Xe if the advantages they offer would be valuable to you.