HP Inc has announced two new enterprise-focused laptops at CES 2016, the EliteBook Folio and the EliteBook 1040 G3.
The EliteBook Folio is an ultra-thin and lightweight device, while the EliteBook 1040 G3 is a more conventional ultrabook with a greater range of ports. Like the rest of the EliteBook range, both laptops will come with HP Inc's specialised enterprise software, including HP TouchPoint Manager and HP Client Security.
They will run Windows 10 Pro with Windows 7 Professional or Windows 8.1 Pro available through downgrade rights.
The EliteBook Folio is extremely compact for a 12.5in laptop at 1kg and 12.4mm thick, but this comes at the cost of ports. Just two Thunderbolt 3-equipped USB-C slots are included, with no full-size USB port. However, the EliteBook Folio does offer UHD and FHD display options, a 180-degree hinge, diamond-cut aluminium construction, 256GB or 512GB of SSD storage and 6th-generation Intel Skylake Core M vPro processors with a Trusted Platform Module chip.
HP Inc has supposedly designed the EliteBook Folio with conferencing and collaborating in mind. Its four integrated speakers are potentially 40 percent louder than on previous HP Inc laptops, and the webcam is fitted with dual-array microphones for clearer calls. The keyboard's function keys also include specialised controls for video and voice conferencing.
The 14.1in EliteBook 1040 G3 appears similar to its predecessor, the EliteBook Folio 1040 G2, save for a more rounded trackpad. This now houses a new, stiffer mechanism for the left and right buttons, which is also used in the EliteBook Folio.
The use of a diamond-cut aluminium body is also shared, although the EliteBook 1040 G3 seems better suited for demanding work by featuring 6th-generation Intel Core i5 and i7 vPro processors plus up to 16GB of RAM.
The EliteBook 1040 G3 is significantly lighter than the older model, down from 1.5kg to 1.3kg. It also switches up its extensive range of ports, replacing the DisplayPort with one USB-C and one full-size HDMI connector. That's in addition to two USB 3.0 ports, an SD card reader and, unusually, a SIM card slot, which enables 4G LTE connectivity. An optional fingerprint scanner can be fitted as well.
As for battery life, HP Inc claims that the EliteBook 1040 G3 can last for up to 11 hours of mixed use, while the EliteBook Folio can manage up to 10 hours.
The EliteBook 1040 G3 will be the first to launch, arriving in the UK in late January starting at £1,000. UK prices for the EliteBook Folio have yet to be confirmed, but will start at €999 when it launches throughout Europe - including the UK - in March.
In addition to the two new laptops, HP Inc revealed that the EliteBook 800 G3 series will receive an Intel Skylake refresh this year. The EliteBook 820 G3, EliteBook 840 G3 and EliteBook 850 G3 will launch in January from £800, and will be available with the same Intel Core vPro processors as the EliteBook 1040 G3, along with new silver magnesium and aluminium bodies which HP Inc said will make them lighter and more durable than their previous versions.
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