HP Launches New Lineup Of Consumer Devices With A Focus On Camera Quality

By Patrick Moorhead - November 17, 2021

Two weeks ago, HP announced its new line of consumer PCs and Monitors for the fall. This year, HP’s lineup of devices considers how often we use video calls and how much it has become a part of our digital lives post Covid-19. I cover many new and innovative technologies that span the digital transformation of the enterprise. Some of the greatest innovations in the enterprise trickle in and make their way to consumers, and hybrid work is one that we will see for a long time. HP’s Fall launch also came at the perfect time, with Windows 11 officially launching this month. Let’s take a look at HP’s new Consumer PCs and Monitors and how they address the new era of hybrid work.

HP Spectre x360 16 

First on the list of HP’s new launch is the Spectre x360 16-inch 2-in-1 laptop. HP’s first 16-inch Spectre comes with a unique 5MP camera with many new features that adapt to the user. The 5MP camera is an IR camera with support for Windows Hello and new software called HP GlamCam. HP GlamCam is in the HP command center and carries many webcam features that improve the video quality, including a Beauty Mode, Lighting Correction, and an Auto Frame mode. HP made a laptop that addresses many of the new workflows and ways we use our devices. It made a laptop that wears many different hats and can take on many different workloads. I am impressed with the new camera functionalities and, if the camera lives up to its promise, I think it sets a new standard for where webcams should be on laptops. 

There is a whole other level of versatility having a laptop with a webcam that adapts to the lighting of wherever the user is. The Auto Framing feature is also useful as well. Although it may seem gimmicky, my camera has an auto frame feature, and it is really helpful. Having a portable version of it on the HP Spectre x360 will keep me from missing it when out of the office.

The HP Spectre x360 16-inch 2-in-1 in laptop mode, tablet mode, tent mode, and presenter mode. HP

It features a 16:10 screen ratio with up to a UHD+ OLED display with a 91% screen-to-body ratio. It also has quad speakers, two of them being upwards-facing speakers, with AI Noise Removal. HP knows how to make good-quality laptop speakers, and I don’t think these will be any different. The Spectre x360 16-inch is Intel Evo certified with up to an 11th Gen Intel Core i7 processor and NVIDIA RTX 3050 GPU with WiFi 6E. HP says it has a 10% CPU improvement and 17% GPU improvement over the last generation. HP putting an NVIDIA RTX 3050 in a 2-in-1 shows that it is serious about the Spectre x360 being a device that can do it all. Whether browsing the web in tablet mode, presenting in tent mode, or editing a video in laptop mode, this laptop has the power to do it all. On top of its flagship-level specs is its Intel Evo certification, which means it has the stamina. The Spectre x360 16-inch has all its bases covered. I will have to test out the new Spectre x360 myself and see how it stands up to the competition. 

Envy 34-inch AiO

The HP Envy 34-inch AiO is the same story, different form factor. HP created the first AiO with a 5K display. It has a 21:9 aspect ratio that HP says has truer black technology that has been factory calibrated with Delta E<2. It has up to an 11th Gen Intel Core i9 processor with an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 graphics. HP says it has 50% faster video editing and 15% faster photo editing than the M1 iMac. If these statistics are true, Apple has a worthy competitor. Not just with performance but also with its immersive display. 

The Envy 34-inch AiO with its camera on the bottom right corner. HP

The HP Envy 340-inch AiO is a premium AiO that has the power and performance for creators with an immersive display. HP showed how the 21:9 screen ratio could be split into a 16:9 window and 5:9 window with Windows 11 snap layouts, which I thought was impressive. It also has a camera that can be magnetically attached to the edge of the display so that creators can place it for different functionality. It also has an adjustable height for comfortability and to create better angles for the camera. The camera has a 5MP camera lens with a 2µm pixels sensor and 16MP binning. HP didn’t stop at putting a camera on this AiO device. It again covered all its bases by making a camera that can be placed in different locations. 

HP 11-inch tablet PC

The HP 11-inch tablet is another unique device from HP that has a dedicated flip-out camera. It is a high-res 13MP camera and can rotate 235-degrees. The camera flips out on the side of the camera, and the tablet can be horizontal or vertical, allowing the camera to be to the side or above the tablet. However, it creates an asymmetric design when it is on the side. I love that HP has focused on giving the camera multiple use-cases rather than opting for a mediocre camera on the front and a less used camera on the back. I also like how the camera’s wide degree of rotation allows users to share what is in front of them, similar to the Envy 34-inch with its moveable camera. 

The camera rotates more than 180 degrees. HP

11-inches for a tablet is also a sweet spot for tablets. It is not too small for a full Windows experience and not too large, making for a comfortable hold. The display is a 2.1K display with eye comfort technology. HP’s 11-inch tablet PC is very practical for those who want a tablet and do many video calls or content creation. The HP 11-inch tablet also has a kickstand, keyboard, and pen companion.

Newly announced monitors

HP also announced two new monitors, the HP U32 4K HDR and the HP M34d WQHD Curved monitor. The HP U32 4K HDR Monitor has a color gamut with 99% sRGB and 98% DCI-P3. HP had in mind creators with making this monitor as well as productivity. 31.5 inches is on the larger side of displays, so combining the large size, the 4K resolution, and the color accuracy, the HP U32 4K monitor should have a wide audience.

The HPM34d WQHD Curved monitor has a 34-inch diagonal display with built-in speakers. The monitor has a 178-degree viewing angle with a max refresh rate of 100Hz. 34 inches, again, makes for a large display, and I think its focus with the HPM34d is for creators to have an all-in-one curved monitor for multitasking, entertainment, and creating content.

Wrapping up

I like the direction that HP is going with its lineup of consumer PCs. I think HP does a really great job every year of listening to consumers and delivering PCs that consumers will enjoy. This year was no different, and HP listened and saw how the main focus for consumers should be quality hybrid work. Consumers use their devices for more than one workflow these days. Whether that is for personal entertainment, hobbies, or work, HP has made personal devices that are both powerful and versatile, and I’m excited to test them out with Windows 11.

Note: Moor Insights & Strategy co-op Jacob Freyman contributed to this article.

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Patrick founded the firm based on his real-world world technology experiences with the understanding of what he wasn’t getting from analysts and consultants. Ten years later, Patrick is ranked #1 among technology industry analysts in terms of “power” (ARInsights)  in “press citations” (Apollo Research). Moorhead is a contributor at Forbes and frequently appears on CNBC. He is a broad-based analyst covering a wide variety of topics including the cloud, enterprise SaaS, collaboration, client computing, and semiconductors. He has 30 years of experience including 15 years of executive experience at high tech companies (NCR, AT&T, Compaq, now HP, and AMD) leading strategy, product management, product marketing, and corporate marketing, including three industry board appointments.