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« Video: HP Envy X2 Windows 8 hybrid PC demoed | Main | IFA 2012: Sony's Xperia Tablet S shoots for 10-inch Android tablet supremacy »
Thursday
Aug302012

HP's multi-touch Ultrabooks and Hybrid PC's ready for Windows 8 launch

HP's Multitouch Hybrid PC and Ultrabooks include the 11-inch HP Envy X2 (left) and the HP ENVY TouchSmart Ultrabook 4

Text and photos by Gadjo Cardenas Sevilla

New York, NY - HP today announced three consumer notebooks featuring multi touch displays, including a uniquely designed hybrid PC that gives people more choice in how they access information.

These notebook PCs are the first HP products announced with Microsoft Windows 8. I was fortunate to see and spend some time with these devices at a launch event in New York earlier this week and was impressed by some of the innovations and design directions HP is taking with regards to offering optimal Windows 8 experiences.

The tablet part of the HP Envy X2 is lightweight, full-featured yet very robust. HP focused on the quality of construction and design.

The HP ENVY x2 offers consumers the power of a notebook and the freedom of a tablet in one stylish, lightweight device with a detachable screen that becomes a full tablet when separated from the keyboard via a seamless magnetic latch.

“Consumers want the flexibility to move between creating rich documents and losing themselves in a great movie,” said James Mouton, senior vice president and general manager, Personal Computer Global Business Unit, HP. “With the HP ENVY x2, customers can have it all, and the touch experience on these three new notebooks brings out the best of Windows 8.”

I am wary about a lot of these magnet based mechanisms holding up through time but the preview models shown to us on Monday seemed to be very well engineered and latched on and stayed connected even if you picked up the notebook by the heavier tablet or screen part.

The HP ENVY x2 also weighs just  3.1 pounds. When separated, the tablet portion weighs just 1.5 pounds which gives users a full-featured Windows 8 solution that's truly versatile and portable. HP showed us a lot of devices during the event and the HP ENVY x2 was the one that caught the attention of many of the Canadian tech press invited to see the new products. 

The concept is well executed and works on a number of levels which make it a desirable consumer option for a Windows 8 device provided the pricing is not too prohibitive and at $849.99, the price seems right for getting both an Ultrabook and a tablet.

The ENVY x2 was the one device that seemed to capture the spirit of Windows 8 as both a tablet and a PC operating system. HP also made sure that the keyboard section brought additional ports and battery life which makes this model more compelling for on-the-go users or travellers.

The HP Spectre XT TouchSmart is the flagship Windows 8 notebook from HP incorporating a touchscreen.

The HP SpectreXT TouchSmart Ultrabook features a 15.6-inch diagonal multitouch Radiance Full HD display and delivers strong performance and the ability to go beyond keyboard and mouse with an optimized touch experience. Measuring 17.9 mm thin and weighing 4.77 pounds, this premium Ultrabook has a sophisticated all-metal design featuring edge-to-edge glass, a soft-touch base for comfort and grip, a glass touchpad and tilted speakers with Beats Audio for optimal sound.

Ideal for designers or creative users who can benefit from having multi-touch or anyone who wants a lightweight desktop replacement with full on Windows 8 functionality should be satisfied by this flagship and premium Ultrabook. 

The HP ENVY TouchSmart Ultrabook 4 has an all-metal design, measures 23mm thin and weighs 4.77 pounds, while offering a 14-inch multitouch HD display. Features a backlit keyboard, up to 8 hours of battery life, a booming subwoofer with Beats Audio and an optional AMD graphics card with 2 GB of graphics memory allow customers to power through their day.

 

Canadian Pricing and availability

·   The HP ENVY x2 is expected to be available in Canada on December 9th, 2012 for $849.99.

·   The HP SpectreXT TouchSmart Ultrabook is expected to be available in Canada in January 2013 for $1499.99.

·   The HP ENVY TouchSmart Ultrabook 4 is expected to be available in Canada on October 26th, 2012 for $999.

 

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