HP Inc. Takes Innovation Risks With New Line Of Commercial PCs

In the PC and mobile world, with new processor launches come refreshed product lines. HP Inc’s latest commercial offerings are no different as they’ve introduced the latest and greatest technologies into their new commercial laptops, SFF (small form factor) PCs and room computing solutions, including their AIOs (All-in-one). As Hewlett-Packard has split in two, the HP Inc. is looking for new ways to create products that their commercial customers desire, and even more importantly, need. Their consumer business has successfully done this with their latest premium consumer notebooks and I’m optimistic on their commercial line, too.

HP Inc’s announcement includes introductions into their EliteBook series as well as their EliteDesk and EliteOne product lines. HP Inc’s newly designed EliteBook 705 G3 series is offered initially with Advanced Micro Device’s new AMD PRO A12 APUs with 12.5”, 14” and 15.6” displays in a multitude of resolutions. The lightest version will be 2.78 lbs and as thin as 18.9mm, which makes it a fairly attractive notebook that sells for $749 and up. HP Inc. says these are the world’s thinnest and lightest mainstream business-class notebooks and by the looks of it, they are lighter and thinner than Dell’s Vostro line and Lenovo’s ThinkPads. This new design ID helps bring HP and Advanced Micro Devices together in an attractive and lightweight package that also has good performance and is affordable for broad deployment. It’s been a long time since Advanced Micro Devices APUs were launched before Intel’s new crop of designs.

These new product announcements from HP Inc. mark a strong move by HP Inc. to introduce more Advanced Micro Devices-based products into their commercial product lines. It also shows that Advanced Micro Devices is delivering on their promises of getting more commercial PC design wins. AMD’s Elite One, for example, comes in two different flavors, the EliteOne 705 G2 and the EliteOne 800 G2. The 705 comes in an AMD flavor at $849 while the Intel-based 800 series starts at $1,199, meaning that the 705 allows for commercial clients to squeeze in more upgrades or simply spend less for a comparable experience. The overall investment in AMD technologies looks big and is a big win for AMD with the new SKUs.

HP Inc. has put greater focus on future technologies with all of these new systems, which includes the optional ability for wireless charging in both flavors of the new EliteOne all-in-one systems. While wireless charging isn’t necessarily something new, HP Inc. demonstrates it understands the future of work and the importance of wireless charging being a huge focus in the future. This is why they are supporting all three wireless charging standards rather than just the Qi standard. I really wish more phones supported wireless charging, but I suspect that this is more of a chicken and egg problem, if there’s nowhere to really charge then having the feature included on phones isn’t really a priority. Hopefully HP Inc. will be one of the visionary companies to help push the enterprise into a truly wireless mobile future.

In addition to the new EliteBook Notebooks and EliteOne all-in-one systems, HP Inc. is also launching new small form factor (SFF) systems that are both Intel and AMD-based and refreshed with the latest Intel processors and Advanced Micro Devices APUs. In fact, both the HP Inc. EliteDesk systems, the EliteDesk 800 G2 and the EliteDesk 705 G2 deliver Intel and AMD’s 6th generation of processors, be that Skylake from Intel or “Godavari” from AMD. This means that all of the systems HP Inc. is offering up are absolutely the latest and greatest from both companies and are extremely geared towards Windows 10 and security. HP Inc. also says their EliteDesk 700 and 800 G2 series PCs to be the world’s smallest business-class desktops at only 5.9x7x1.3” in size. This appears true, given Dell’s Optiplex Micro is 7x7x1.4” in size and Lenovo’s ThinkCentre Tiny Desktop is also 7x7x1.3”. HP Inc’s ability to continue to shrink the footprint of these small form factor (SFF) PCs means that the company is continually looking to improve the places where these machines can be used and responding to customer feedback to create smaller machines. It’s just the way the market is headed for mainstream PC computing.

But HP Inc. didn’t stop with traditional desktop and notebook systems, they are also taking a serious look at collaboration and updating their HP Inc. Collaboration PC with the G2, which leverages the EliteDesk 800 Mini Desktop with HP Inc’s exclusive partnership with Intel that utilizes Intel’s Unite Skype for Business plug-in, which I had a chance to test, that is designed to allow for seamless video conferencing via Skype. All of this hardware and software is paired with HP Inc’s EliteDisplay E240c video conferencing monitor, which is designed to turn the computer and the whole room into a conference room ready for collaboration with a built-in webcam and thin design. The E240c is a 23.8” monitor, so it won’t by any means be for a huge conference room, but could easily serve as a great way to easily conference a remote person into a conference room.

HP Inc. is upgrading their commercial PCs across the board, for mobile, all-in-one users and SFF desktops. The good thing is that HP Inc. is offering a multitude of options with these systems and giving their customers multiple price points and feature capabilities. But they are not limiting themselves to merely just refreshing their systems with new processors, they are introducing new features like wireless charging, thinner and lighter form factors, and new UC capabilities. It was also interesting to see HP Inc. launch first with an Advanced micro Devices APU.

In the future, I’d love to see some deeper and wider commercial mobile solutions that better leverage the commercial PC experience.