HP is ready to get back into the portable game with its newly revealed EliteBook Folio 1020 line of notebook computers that claims to be the lightest and thinnest in the industry.
Now that Intel's fanless Core M processors have hit the market, manufacturers are scrambling to utilize the technology to make the best ultraportable laptops imaginable. HP seems to be taking the opportunity to get its name back out there for a rebranding of sorts on these business-oriented laptops.
"They're not the largest or most powerful, but HP is emphasizing a lot of buzzwords that are going to appeal to an enterprise," Senior Practice Director at ABI Research, Jeff Orr, told TechNewsWorld, "Especially for users looking for a versatile system that's not too big."
But it's that rebranding that's so important to the success of the new EliteBook line. HP is no longer the desktop PC powerhouse that it once was, but a focus on the emerging portable 2-in-one and Chromebook market is important to the company's long-term success.
"As HP looks to rebrand itself and re-establish what HP means to both consumers and businesses, this is an important announcement," Orr continued. "It's good timing for HP to be focused on the enterprise."
HP "did a good job of talking about value-add through their software and services," he noted, "balancing the hardware, specs and speed with being able to provide complete solutions where HP is a viable partner for the enterprise."
The EliteBook 1020 and EliteBook 1020 Special Edition were announced on Tuesday as part of the company's push back into the business sector. Both measuring just 15.7mm, they're designed to withstand military-grade tests for drops, shock, dust-resistance, and temperature extremes.
Both Windows-based laptops offer nine hours of battery life, solid-state hard drives, and a 12.5-inch touchscreen display. 8GB of RAM and a choice of 128, 180, or 256 GB os storage space round out the impressive specs, but the biggest difference between the two is the Special Edition's magnesium-lithium alloy on the cover and carbon fiber construction on the bottom frame that give it a final weight of only 2.2 lbs. While the Microsoft Surface Pro 2 and 3 are both lighter (with or without the type cover), they're considered hybrid tablets with keyboards and not really in the same category. But if you read the fine print at the EliteBook 1020 website, it says that the "lightest and thinnest in the industry" label is based on a comparison with Lenovo, Dell, Asus, Acer, and Toshiba business-class notebooks as of November 13, 2014.
The EliteBook line includes a wide range of laptops that focus on that military-grade durability and portability. But the EliteBook 1020's fanless Core M processor takes the portability element to a whole new level, and that's what customers want.
There is no price yet announced for either the EliteBook 1020 or the Special Edition, but the standard version is expected to release in February while the Special Edition will be more like April when the V-Pro Core M chips are available.