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Posts Tagged ‘ HP ’

HP cuts off upgrades to spite its loyal customers

Monday, February 10th, 2014

No updates for HP servers

If you have an HP ProLiant server, or a ProCurve switch, then you’d better set some time aside before February 19th to download the drivers, BIOS updates, patches and fixes for your model from the HP support website. Because after that date, unless you have a current warranty or a Care Pack Service Agreement, you will be unable to get your download.

In a startlingly brief five-paragraph blog post entitled, with no obvious sense of irony, “Customers for life”, senior HP staffer Mary McCoy lays out the company’s rationale for this move and slips in various interestingly chosen phrases, such as that this “aligns with industry best practices” and that HP is “in no way trying to force customers to purchase extended coverage”.

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HP ZBook 15 and HP ZBook 17 review: first look

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

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HP’s Z Series family of desktop workstations and monitors – not forgetting the brilliant Z1 – have welcomed three new mobile members into the fold. Stepping in above the existing EliteBook range, the ZBook line-up crams workstation-class performance and ISV-certification into a trio of 14in, 15.6in and 17.3in laptops.

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HP EliteBook Revolve review: first look

Wednesday, December 5th, 2012

EliteBook Revolve

If you’re not already sick of hybrid laptop/tablets — like PC Pro’s features editor David Bayon — HP’s adding another one to the pile here in Frankfurt: the business-focused EliteBook Revolve.

Unsurprisingly given the name, the Revolve’s 11.6in touchscreen display pivots on a hinge on the rear, swivelling round to be laid flat against the keyboard, turning the device into a tablet. The display is a fraction smaller than the keyboard part, giving it a stacked looked when folded up.

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HP Envy x2 (Intel Clover Trail) review: first look

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

Envy2

Intel has been struggling for years to get its Atom processors into smartphones, but handset manufacturers’ existing investment in ARM-based processes and software is a big obstacle.

(It was no surprise when product marketing director Sumeet Syal, speaking here at IDF, revealed that most of the hardware and software for the San Diego smartphone had been developed in-house by Intel, and handed over to Orange as more or less a finished product.)

Atom, however, isn’t only about smartphones: Intel has long been pushing it as a tablet processor too, and with the advent of Windows 8 it looks like that ambition is about to be fulfilled. Here, all the history is on Intel’s side: ARM is the newcomer, suffering from limited hardware and software support, while Atom-based Windows 8 tablets can run the full range of desktop applications, as well as supporting business-friendly features such as joining domains and participating in group policies. Syal described Atom as, quite simply, “a great solution” for tablets. (more…)

HP teaches you Windows 8 because Microsoft won’t

Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

If you’ve used Windows 8 and wondered how on earth to do the most basic tasks, you’re far from alone. It took us weeks to work out we could unlock a PC with the Space bar, and accidentally right-clicking in the bottom-left corner of the screen was a real revelation — try it and you’ll see what we mean.

These are incredibly basic things Microsoft should have taught us from the beginning, but didn’t. And with the final version of Windows — at least the RTM we’ve used — it still doesn’t. The extent of the teaching is a single animation during installation, which simply shows you how to move your mouse to the corner of the screen – with no explanation of why or when to do so.

So it’s both sad and entirely logical that third-parties educating users themselves. As reported by Windows Observer, HP has launched a free Getting Started with Windows 8 app in the Microsoft Store, which offers users text guides, video tutorials and links to forums and help pages.

HP Getting Started with Windows 8

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Revealed: the military standards and robots HP uses to test its laptops

Thursday, May 17th, 2012

HP laptop hinge testing

It’s not often the torture testing behind the latest laptops is laid bare for the world to see but, at HP’s Global Influencers Summit in Shanghai, the firm showed off a selection of its toughest testing kit — as well as some impressive statistics about the stresses and strains its devices experience during the design process.

“All of our EliteBook products are put through military spec 810G testing,” explained Carol Hess, HP’s vice president for worldwide commercial PC marketing. That includes the new EliteBook Folio, and that means an extremely strenuous workout for a humble notebook. She said HP uses eight of the 810G standards benchmarks,  including tests that measure for heat, cold, humidity and dust resistance as well as a laptop’s ability to handle vibrations and drops. “We drop [laptops] about 30 inches from a table, 26 times on each side of the unit.” (more…)

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HP EliteBook Folio review: first look

Thursday, May 10th, 2012

HP’s Global Influencers Summit in Shanghai has been dominated by Ultrabooks – and, of course, Sleekbooks – and the firm’s fourth new notebook is one of the most intriguing.
It’s the Elitebook Folio 9470m, and HP hopes that on release in October it’ll entice high-flying executives with its combination of corporate features and attractive design.
For starters, there’s TPM, Intel vPro and a range of HP software, including a customisable BIOS – handy for IT managers who want to restrict access to certain parts of the software or, indeed, lock out meddling employees entirely. HP will also install its ProtectTools software suite alongside Windows 7 Professional, and a fingerprint reader is also an optional extra.
Accessories will also be available alongside the Folio. The battery, which HP says will last nine hours, can be upgraded with a secondary power pack that – the firm claims – increases the Folio’s longevity to a whopping twenty hours. The battery slice attaches to the bottom of the 19mm EliteBook and adds several millimetres to the base of the machine, bringing the Elitebook’s dimensions firmly out of Ultrabook territory. Nevertheless, it’s a worthwhile addition for those who spend plenty of time on the road.
For those who stay attached to their desk, there’s also a docking station with a broad range of additional ports and sockets: four USB 3 ports, a D-SUB output, Ethernet socket, audio outputs and a DisplayPort output add to the D-SUB, RJ45 and USB 3 sockets that are already included on the machine.
HP has also paid attention to the Folio’s design, with James Mouton, the senior vice president of HP’s global computing unit, saying that “users want something more compelling and sleeker” – a change that’s seen HP “deliberately blur the line between commercial and consumer”. The Folio is certainly one of the best-looking corporate machines we’ve seen thanks to its brushed metal exterior and black bezel, although the odd hint of plastic and visible seams mean it can’t quite compete with the best consumer machines.
We can’t comment, though, on screen quality or ergonomics. With release so far away and final tweaks presumably still being made, HP could only bring a dummy model to Shanghai. It certainly felt very strong, but we’ll wait until our review sample arrives before passing judgment.
That’s not all we can’t mention, either: aside from confirming that the Folio will use Intel’s ultra low voltage Ivy Bridge processors and that its 14in screen will have a resolution of at least 1,366 x 768, HP’s representatives weren’t able to divulge any more information about the Folio’s internals.
And, as if that wasn’t enough, the October release date also means pricing hasn’t been finalised. Don’t expect it to be cheap, though, thanks to the premium design, Ivy Bridge processor and broad range of security features – and don’t expect the docking station or battery slice to command bargain prices, either.
It’s a glimpse into the future, then, but the Elitebook Folio is still an enticing piece of hardware – even if we’re not yet able to find out what’s on the inside or, indeed, how much it’ll cost. We just hope HP follows up this early promise with a capable business Ultrabook.

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HP’s Global Influencers Summit in Shanghai has been dominated by Ultrabooks – and, of course, Sleekbooks – but the firm’s fourth new laptop is one of the most intriguing.

It’s the Elitebook Folio 9470m, and HP hopes that on release in October it’ll entice high-flying executives with its combination of corporate features and attractive design.

For starters, there’s TPM, Intel vPro and a range of HP software, including a customisable BIOS – handy for IT managers who want to restrict access to certain parts of the software or, indeed, lock out meddling employees entirely. HP will also install its ProtectTools software suite alongside Windows 7 Professional, and a fingerprint reader is also an optional extra. (more…)

The shoebox-sized all-in-one printer

Thursday, May 10th, 2012

Normally an all-in-one printer wouldn’t draw crowds, but HP’s latest – the OfficeJet 150 – is a little different. While it offers the print, copy and scan functions you’d expect from a multifunction machine, this one measures just 348mm from side to side – and weighs just 3kg.
HP is billing the 150 as a portable all-in-one for busy businessfolk and, while it’s certainly not as light or mobile as the average laptop or tablet, it’s easy to keep it on the back seat of a car or in a backpack.
The 150’s clever design means it’s able to reach spaces that most printers can’t reach. The top paper tray folds up from the top of the machine, and beneath that lies a horizontal panel that, once lifted up and locked into place, reveals a small colour touchscreen LCD.
The output tray unfolds from the bottom of the machine, and connectivity options are covered: Bluetooth is the only wireless option, and there are two USB 2 ports, one of which supports PictBridge. There’s an SD card slot, too, with pictures able to be printed directly from media plugged into these ports.
HP is claiming the 2,100mAh battery inside the OfficeJet 150 will handle 500 prints, and it’ll also be possible to buy replacement batteries – and HP will also offer a car adapter.
Such tiny dimensions inevitably mean compromise. The paper tray at the top of the machine can only accommodate 50 sheets and, when copying, paper has to be fed into the machine a page at a time. Print speed seems reasonable, with HP claiming 22ppm for monochrome jobs and 18ppm for colour prints and, oddly enough, the OfficeJet 150 is powered by the ARM9 core that’s found in many of today’s top smartphones.
There’s no denying that miniturisation drives up prices: the OfficeJet 150 will cost X400 when it arrives in June. Whether that’s a price people will be willing to pay for printing on the go is debatable, but it’s one of the most interesting takes on the humble all-in-one we’ve seen for years. Watch out for the full review.

HP OfficeJet 150

Normally an all-in-one printer wouldn’t draw crowds, but HP’s latest – the OfficeJet 150 – is a little different. While it offers the print, copy and scan functions you’d expect from a multifunction machine, this one is barely a foot wide – and weighs only 3kg.

HP is billing the OfficeJet 150 as a portable all-in-one for busy business folk and, while it’s certainly not as light or mobile as the average laptop or tablet, we can easily see it being kept on the back seat of a car or in a backpack.

The clever design sees the paper tray folds up from the top of the machine, and beneath that lies a horizontal panel that, once lifted and locked into place, reveals a small colour touchscreen LCD. (more…)

Forget the Ultrabook: here comes the HP Sleekbook

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

HP has added to its laptop range with a pair of new devices that straddle the line between Ultrabooks and traditional notebooks.
They’re both Envy models, with the smaller Envy 4 boasting a 14in screen and the larger Envy 6 including a 15.6in panel. On the outside, at least, both devices just about provide the dimensions we’re used to seeing from Ultrabooks: the smaller of the two is 20mm thick and weighs in at 1.8kg, with the latter barely any thicker and only a little heavier.
It’s on the inside where HP has made most of its changes. Envy 4 and 6 Ultrabooks include Intel processors, but the model we’ve sampled deployed a Core i3-2367M – a relatively modest chip and, crucially, a Sandy rather than Ivy Bridge part. HP assured us that Ivy Bridge models will also be available.
The storage situation is little clearer: the Envy 4 can be bought a with either a 32GB mSATA cache drive and 500GB hard disk or with the 500GB hard disk on its own, and the Envy 6 offers a 120GB SSD as well as variations on the other storage configurations: either a single 320GB hard disk or the same hard disk augmented with its own 32GB cache driver. If you’re buying a hard disk model, though, that means the laptop will have to make do with a Sleekbook sticker rather than Ultrabook branding.
Curiously, HP is also offering some of its Envy 6 these machines with AMD processors – and, with Intel tightly controlling its own laptop format, these are also being marketed as Sleekbooks.
Models on display here in China use the latest AMD APUs: the A10-4655M is a 32nm Trinity part, runs at 2.3GHz across two cores, and includes a Radeon HD 7620G graphics chip. Gamers don’t just have to settle for the fine graphics chip included in AMD ’s APUs, either – Intel-based Envy 6 models will be available with an AMD Radeon HD 7670M inside.
Thankfully, the exterior is less confusing, with both machines boasting near-identical design. Black or silver metallic-effect plastic is the order of the day on both the interior and lid, and it makes for a classy-looking machine, even if it can’t match up to the sleek design of the Spectre XT.
Ergonomics and build quality, meanwhile, feel like a mixed bag. The wrist-rest feels more than strong enough, with little give to be found on either side of the trackpad, and there wasn’t too much give in the Envy 4’s lid – although the increased size meant the Envy 6’s lid bent and flexed more. Both the 14in and 15.6in models include 1,366 x 768 resolution screens and, while that felt a little too low on the larger Envy, quality appears to be good throughout.
The keyboard is comfortable enough, although some might not like the slightly bouncy base and soft typing action, and the trackpad wasn’t perfect either – it’s certainly responsive, but its clicking action felt a little too light for our liking.
Beats Audio is included on both machines, with HP claiming the pair of speakers and subwoofer will provide superior sound, but our brief test produced music that, while good, is little better than we’ve heard from other mainstream and high-end laptops.
Both Envy machines provide Ultrabook-style dimensions and, in some cases, Ultrabook-style performance – even if they’re actually Sleekbooks – and HP is pricing both of these machines accordingly. Envy systems bearing the Ultrabook logo will start at £649, making them some of the cheapest Ultrabooks on the market, and Sleekbook versions are £100 cheaper.
We’re pleased to see a major manufacturer including AMD’s APUs in its laptops after a period of Intel Core-based dominance, and it seems like Trinity is up to task; despite being unable to compete with Intel on sales or marketing clout, combining CPU and GPU into one chip certainly makes sense in a laptop of this size.
It remains to be seen, though, whether the lower price makes up for the Envy 4 and 6’s ergonomic issues, with questionable build quality evident across some of the models we’ve seen. HP’s Envy 4 and 6 Ultrabooks and Sleekbooks will be available in June. Until then, tell us what you think in the comments – and let us know if you’ve got your head around the Ultrabook and Sleekbook names, too.

HP Envy Ultrabook unveiled

HP has added to its laptop range with a pair of devices that straddle the line between Ultrabooks and traditional laptops.

They’re both Envy branded models, with the smaller Envy 4 boasting a 14in screen and the larger Envy 6 including a 15.6in panel. On the outside, at least, both devices just about provide the dimensions we’re used to seeing from Ultrabooks: the smaller of the two is 20mm thick and weighs in at 1.8kg, with the latter barely any thicker and only a little heavier.

DSC03192It’s on the inside where HP has made most of its changes. The Envy 4 and 6 Ultrabooks include Intel processors, but the model we’ve sampled deployed a Core i3-2367M – a relatively modest chip and, crucially, a Sandy rather than Ivy Bridge part. HP assured us that Ivy Bridge models will also be available. (more…)

HP Spectre XT review: first look

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

HP has unveiled its latest range of Ultrabooks at its Global Influencer Summit in Shanghai.
Leading the charge is the Spectre XT, which slots into the firm’s range alongside the Envy 14 Spectre, and it makes an enviable first impression: it’s just 15mm thick and weighs 1.4kg, which makes it slimmer and lighter than most of its Ultrabook rivals – and significantly slighter than the older model, which was 20mm thick and weighed 1.8kg.
There’s no denying the Spectre XT is a looker, either: the lid and wrist-rest are both constructed from brushed metal, the 13.3in screen is surrounded by a slick black bezel, and the base is coated with the red of Beats Audio, which comes as standard.
The screen, meanwhile, has been slimmed down from the original Spectre – it’s now 13.3in rather than 14in. Resolution has taken a step down, from 1,600 x 900 to 1,366 x 768, but it looks as though HP has been able to preserve the enviable levels of quality, with vibrant colours and decent detail in evidence when we used the XT.
The only thing missing is the Gorilla Glass covering of the original Spectre, and the loss of that dose of originality is our only major complaint about the XT’s looks – and, of course, the simpler design has allowed HP to make the XT slimmer and lighter. That’s a trade off we suspect many will be happy to make.
There’s plenty to like in the ergonomic department, too. We criticised the original Spectre for its poor build quality, and we’re happy to note that HP has addressed our concerns; while there’s still a little give in the rear of the screen, the desktop isn’t distorted, and the wristrest is far firmer than it used to be.
There’s a little flex in the base of the keyboard, but the Scrabble tile keys are still responsive and comfortable and, as with the original Spectre, it’s still backlit. The entire trackpad is smooth and responsive but, like last time, the two buttons at the bottom of the pad are simply seperated with a thin white line – and they’re still a little too tough for our liking.
Under the hood, HP’s latest offers precisely the kind of specification we’d expect from the next generation of Ultrabooks. Processing power – at least in the model we’ve used – comes from one of Intel’s Ivy Bridge chips, the 2GHz, low voltage Core i7-3667U, and storage is provided by a 256GB Samsung SSD – plenty of room for Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit and Adobe Photoshop and Premiere Elements 10, which are included as standard. There’s also four gigabytes of RAM, and HP is claiming eight hours of battery life.
HP is being coy about UK pricing, but the Spectre XT will cost at least euros 999 when it arrives on these shores at the end of June. We’ll have a full review at launch but, until then, what do you think? Is this the machine to make you buy an Ultrabook, or are you still to be persuaded? Let us know in the comments.

HP Spectre XT

HP has unveiled its latest range of Ultrabooks at its Global Influencer Summit in Shanghai.

Leading the charge is the Spectre XT, which slots into the firm’s offering just beneath the Envy 14 Spectre, and it makes an excellent first impression. It’s only 15mm thick and weighs 1.4kg, which brings it into line with the best Ultrabooks around, including the Dell XPS 13 and Asus ZenBoook UX31 – and that also means it’s almost half a kilo lighter than the original Spectre.

DSC03173There’s no denying the Spectre XT is a good-looking laptop. The lid and wrist-rest are both constructed from brushed metal, the screen is surrounded by a slick black bezel, and the base is red to signify the inclusion of Beats audio. (more…)

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