HP Unveils Latest Spring 2010 Laptopsby Balraj Sandhu and Jarred Walton on May 5, 2010 5:28 PM EST
HP Business Notebooks
Rounding things out are a selection of new business orientated notebooks. These products fall into the premium HP ProBook S and B Series products and the entry level 425/625 models. The ProBook computers provide various business targeted tools, such as HP Day Starter, HP QuickLook 3, and HP QuickWeb that provide instant access to email, calendar, contacts, tasks and the internet. HP Power Assistant also serves to conserve power and provide the user with an accurate representation of remaining battery life.
The HP ProBook B-Series are available with Intel processors (models 6450b and 6550b) or AMD processors (models 6455b and 6555b). The 6450b and 6455b feature 14” LED backlit displays while the 6550b and 6555b feature 15.6” LED backlit displays. The AMD models feature AMD VISION Pro technology with Phenom II, Turion II, Athlon II, and V-series processors, with availability in June starting at $780. Meanwhile the Intel models feature Core i3, i5 and i7 processors, with the i5 and i7 versions available with Intel vPro technology. They are also available with onboard Intel HD graphics or ATI Mobility Radeon HD 540v discrete graphics. The Intel models launch in June, starting at $860.
The HP ProBook S-Series consists of three models coming in at 13.3” (4325s), 14” (4425s) and 15.5” (4525s), all of which have LED backlit displays and brushed aluminum chassis. They include the same VISION Pro technology and processors as the B-Series notebooks, and will have either ATI Mobility HD 4250 integrated or ATI Mobility Radeon HD 530v discrete graphics. HP claims these machines are 69% faster than the previous generation of AMD notebooks. The notebooks also feature touchpads with gesture support. They are available in May starting at $620. Finally, HP have launched two entry level business models, the HP 425 with a 14” LED backlit display and the HP 625 with a 15.6” LED backlit display. Both are powered by AMD processors and are available in May starting at $550.
In summary, there are a lot of new products from HP, most of which won’t set your pulse racing. However, we noticed two interesting aspects with the announcements. First, the large number of AMD VISION/VISION Pro equipped models is a break from the norm, and some of these are in the same product space as their Intel counterparts. They will inevitably fall a little short on performance and battery life (judging by other AMD-equipped laptops), but they do have a price advantage. That may be the most important factor in the buying decision, especially for cost-conscious business users.
The second thing, something that perhaps does set the pulse racing, is the new ENVY models. The previous generation models were generally dismissed as poor MacBook Pro copies; one glance at the spec sheet and photos of these models shows these machines look to be every bit as good as the MacBook Pros—and perhaps even better. The price is a good place to start, but we await final hardware and testing results before we can declare a victor.