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HP adds Core i7 EliteBook tablet, more pro notebooks

updated 12:00 am EST, Mon March 1, 2010

HP updates EliteBook, ProBook for Core i7

HP began the week by launching a slate of new EliteBook and ProBook models, including the company's first tablet based on Intel's new chip architecture. The EliteBook 2740p carries a 12-inch multi-touch display that also supports pens, but has a more durable body than mainstream PCs like the TouchSmart tm2. A combination of stainless steel outside and magnesium outside helps it meet the US military's 810G specs for resistance to dust, humidity and vibration.

Inside, the system is also much faster and uses a standard-voltage Core i5 or i7 that can still run for up to five hours on a single battery. HP hasn't given a base configuration but expects the system to start at $1,599 and carry between 160GB and 250GB of disk space as well as up to 8GB of RAM. An 80GB or 160GB SSD is an option, as is a Qualcomm Gobi modem for 3G and a new Ultra-Slim Docking Base ($299) that includes a DVD burner, DisplayPort out and eSATA.

A second EliteBook with a conventional 12-inch display, the 2540p, is also joining the lineup. At just under 3.4 pounds, it's considered the lightest EliteBook; it should simultaneously be faster as it can use full-power Core i5 and i7 chips in addition to the low-voltage i7. The absence of tablet hardware also gives it the option of desktop hard drives between 250GB and 500GB and a longer battery life that runs up to 8.5 hours on a standard six-cell battery and 12.5 hours on an extended nine-cell unit. Those using the low-voltage i7 also have a secondary drive bay that can either take a DVD burner, a secondary 250GB drive or an empty space to save weight.

An specified base system will start out at $1,099.

The ProBook updates are more conservative but bring the 13.3-inch 4320s, 14-inch 4420s, 15-inch 4520s and 17.3-inch 4720s into the modern era with full-power Core i3, i5 or i7 processors as well as an optional Mobility Radeon HD 4350 for graphics and hard drives between 250GB and 500GB. Prices for the whole line haven't been detailed but should start at $719.

All of the EliteBooks and the companion dock will be available in April, while the ProBook updates should be available later this month.

EliteBook 2740p and 2540p

ProBook 4320s, 4420s, 4520s and 4720s

by MacNN Staff



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