HP launches laptops and monitors designed for work-from-home life

HP has had a long time to adjust its designs for pandemic conditions, and today at CES 2021 it is launching a whole slate of products aimed at enabling people to work better from home. They come with features aimed at improving privacy, collaboration, and sustainability (such as vegan leather).

The products are targeted at people who are working from home, either as home IT managers or video bloggers (bloggers) who livestream to audiences, said Alex Cho, president of HP Personal Systems, in an interview with VentureBeat.

All of it is aimed at showing the PC isn’t dead. It’s essential, with half the global workforce doing remote work. And during the pandemic, HP said its own survey is people are working seven hours more per week on their PCs.

A small but important example of that is the HP Enhanced Lighting, a selfie light to customize and light up a person’s appearance in video calls. Working and staying at home isn’t always simple, with only 30% of people having a space where they can shut the door. Yet 72% of knowledge workers want a hybrid remote-office model moving forward and 48% of Gen Z (those born after 1996) are considering an expansion of their freelance businesses.

New laptops

Above: HP Dragonfly Max laptop alongside a big curved monitor.

Image Credit: HP

Among the highlights is the HP Elite Dragonfly Max, which is designed for videoconferencing. It has a 5-megapixel camera with infrared, and it has four wide-range microphones with AI-driven audio optimization. It comes in black or blue, and it has HP Eye Ease for its display, which blocks blue light that can take a toll on the ability to sleep properly.

HP also created the HP Elite Wireless Earbuds for collaboration while being quiet. The earbuds have personalized audio tuning, adjustable noise cancellation, and sound situation presets. You can use them for anything from conference calls to listening to music on a phone. It will be offered as a bundle option with the Elite Dragonfly Max.

The company also created its first pull-forward business convertible laptop, the HP Elite Folio, which adapts to the way people transition between work and life. It uses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G compute platform to deliver optional 5G connectivity, Wi-Fi6, and up to 24.5 hours of video playback. It has a magnesium unibody design and a webcam with a 76-degree field of view, a dual-microphone array, and speakers from Bang & Olufsen. It has a 13.5-inch diagonal display with HP Sure View Reflect privacy panel and an HD webcam with a built-in privacy shutter. It is fanless and has a quiet keyboard, as no one wants to hear you typing on a Zoom call. It also has an HP Elite Slim Active Pen with integrated charging cradle and storage. You can use it in tablet, laptop, or media modes, and it has a soft vegan leather.

The HP Elite Dragonfly G2 is designed to give people the freedom to move around the house as a compact business convertible with a starting weight at less than a kilogram, or 2.2 pounds. It is also made with finishes and accets that use recycled material, including ocean-bound plastics. It uses the latest 11th Gen Intel Core processors and new Intel integrated graphics and allows users to stay connected through impressively fast 5G or gigabit-class 4G LTE connectivity, with Tile location tracking now built in.

The Dragonfly Blue chassis is a convertible 2-in-1 with an easy-to-clean design, for when you spill coffee all over your device. It has sound by Bang & Olufsen, with AI to maximize the audio experience for speech, music, and movies.

HP’s new intrusion detection technology, HP Tamper Lock, locks the PC if it has been physically opened or compromised and notifies the user.

The HP EliteBook 840 G8 Aero gives people the freedom to move and meet the demands of their multi-task, multi-place workday, HP said. With a starting weight under 2.5 pounds, it uses 11th Gen Intel Core processors, integrated Tile, Wi-Fi 6, and optional 5G LTE connectivity options. It has an integrated 720p HD camera, world-facing third microphone, top-firing speakers, and AI-based audio. It has an HP Privacy Camera and optional HP Sure View Reflect to protect against visual hacking. The design features a new magnesium chassis that contains 90% recycled materials, recycled plastics, and 100% sustainably sourced packaging to reduce environmental impact.

Creativity focus

Above: HP Envy 14 debuts at CES 2021.

Image Credit: HP

For some people, working from home requires more creativity. HP said the top three tasks include photography, writing stories or articles, and livestreaming.

For this crowd, HP has a new HP Envy 14, a new “mobile personal creative studio. The laptop has a 14-inch diagonal screen with a 16:10 aspect ratio.

It has an optional WUXGA (1920 x 1200) multi-touch enabled IPS display allows for an 11% greater viewing area than a traditional 16:9 laptop. This is also HP’s first 14-inch diagonal laptop featuring color calibration with Delta E <2 for color accuracy. You can easily adjust display settings depending on the creative scenario with HP Display Control.

It uses 11th Gen Intel Core processors and up to Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 Ti Max-Q design graphics via four different settings in HP System Control. It has an advanced thermal solution using an IR thermopile sensor within HP Performance Control. You can allocate power between the CPU and GPU with HP Dynamic Power. And it gets up to 16.5 hours of battery life.

And it includes a physical shutter for the webcam, a dedicated mute microphone key on the keyboard, and features AI Noise Removal to intelligently mute background noise when using speakers, headphones, or the microphone during video chats, audio calls, and recordings.

And you can transfer photos, videos, documents, and more, wirelessly between PC and mobile devices with HP QuickDrop.

The HP Envy 14 features HP Enhanced Lighting, a selfie light that uses lighting controls in the display to customize and enhance a person’s appearance in video calls.

Productivity monitors

Above: HP E27u G4 USB-C monitor.

Image Credit: HP

The HP M-Series FHD Monitors are designed for home workers who want to look at a lot of things at once.

It has low-blue light technology as well as color accuracy, with a 99% sRGB for a wider color gamut. The M24f, M27f, and M32f FHD feature a three-sided borderless design with full HD for image clarity and wide viewing angles.

It has integrated cable management along the back of the stand to reduce wire clutter.

The HP M-Series FHD Monitors are the first Eyesafe certified monitor series made with recycled ocean-bound plastics. Each monitor is sustainably made with 85% post-consumer recycled plastic and 100% recycled packaging.

The HP E24u G4 and HP E27u G4 USB-C Monitors provide a clean desk solution with quick and easy USB-C connectivity that can power a connected laptop up to 65 watts.

For home and office workers who need a simple multi-monitor configuration, these displays offer daisy chaining, multi-port connectivity, and four-way ergonomics.

Pricing and availability

Setting up a power office at home.

Above: Setting up a power office at home.

Image Credit: HP

  • HP Elite Dragonfly G2 and HP Elite Dragonfly Max are expected to be available in January. Pricing will be available closer to availability.
  • HP Elite Wireless Earbuds are expected to be available in April. Pricing will be available closer to availability.
  • HP Elite Folio is expected to be available in February. Pricing will be available closer to availability.
  • HP EliteBook 840 Aero G8 is expected to be available in March. Pricing will be available closer to availability.
  • HP Elite x2 G8 is expected to be available in April. Pricing will be available closer to availability.
  • HP ENVY 14 is expected to be available in January via HP.com for a starting price of $1,000.
  • The HP M-Series FHD Monitors are expected to be available in March via HP.com for a starting price of $140.
  • The HP E24u G4 and HP E27u G4 USB-C Monitors are expected to be available in February for $220 and $340, respectively.

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