You’ve probably seen this kind of design before, in the form of a keyboard case wrapped around an iPad or other tablet. It works the same way with PCs: Take a fairly traditional tablet, add a removable, flexible plastic or fabric case that wraps around the device and, when opened, presents a keyboard and a stand for a laptop-like experience.
Folio devices can seem like a good value, because they integrate a case, stand, and keyboard into one package that usually ships in the box with the tablet. And when you don’t need to do much typing, you can leave the keyboard case at home for a lighter tablet experience.
But like sliders, the folio form factor usually delivers a less-than-ideal typing experience, with shallow key travel, small or cramped keys, and a small or sometimes nonexistent touchpad. And as with sliders, the screen angle usually isn’t adjustable (with some models, you can choose between two angles), which can be frustrating in daylight or harsh overhead lighting.
Because folio keyboards have cloth or plastic hinges, you'll have to do most of your typing at a desk or table. If you try typing with a folio PC in your lap, the screen can become unstable and flip or fall over backward, possibly to the floor. The same is true, to a lesser extent, with the Microsoft Surface tablets and their keyboard covers, which are similarly designed.
Who should buy a Folio? Those primarily looking for a tablet first, who don't do a lot of typing, and do most of their typing on a flat, stable surface.
Example: Samsung ATIV Tab 3, about $700