“The balance between personal life and work life is gone. This is a smartphone and tablet phenomenon,” said Derek Everett, director, worldwide product management, commercial Windows tablets, HP. “The new normal is this blending of work life and personal life. What we’re trying to do is look at that and ask how we can embrace that.”
The first of these, the ElitePad 1000 G2, is an improvement on the company’s ElitePad 900. With the 1000, HP was looking to make advancements in three areas: display, communication, and performance.
At 9.2 mm in width, the ElitePad 1000 is more durable than it lets on. It features a 10.1-inch WUXGA display that is impervious to smudges and scratches. It is built to withstand MIL-STD-810g testing – a process that is also used to test the durability of US military equipment – and has endured a further 115,000 hours of reliability testing through HP’s Total Test Process.
Apart from durability, the ElitePad 1000 brings some nifty upgrades to the table, notably ones that customers asked HP to introduce to the product line.
“We had positive feedback from customers for the 900, but they also said where they wanted changes,” said Everett. “They told us that 64-bit needed, because the 900 was 32-bit only. We leveraged Intel’s latest Atom technology to get 64-bit in this product, so that businesses can have unification of 64-bit across all their devices.”
It also boasts enterprise-class security that includes drive encryption, secure NFC, and HP’s Security SmartJacket.
At the same time, HP announced the ProPad 600, a tablet that is similar to the ElitePad in many respects, but is more mainstream and lacks the serviceability that is inherent to the ElitePad.
Nevertheless, it offers businesses Windows 8.1 and Microsoft Office, as well as a collection of HP apps that come pre-installed on the device. It includes Bluetooth 4.0 and HP’s ePrint software, so that users can print on the go without having to go through the cumbersome process of installing additional drivers.
The third innovation HP introduced is the TX1 point-of-sale (POS) solution, a tablet that allows retailers to do mobile POS transactions. Though it can also be used for fixed POS transactions, it gives retailers the freedom to do what Everett calls “line-busting” – in other words, to pull a customer out of a traditional cash lineup and speed along the checkout process.
It comes with a stand that holds the tablet upright when it is not being carried around the store. It also comes with a standard cash drawer and printer, and can be tilted to capture a customer’s signature for credit transactions.
Mobile security is at the top of most people’s minds, and HP is quick to address those concerns. The device comes pre-installed with Microsoft Defender to protect the device from viruses, as well as HP’s Trusted Platform Module (TPM) for the secure storage of customer data.
The product will be available in select countries – including Canada – in May.
These devices, with their differing specs and capabilities, are about giving HP customers more choice in how they carry out their operations.
“There is no ‘one-size-fits-all’,” said Everett. “Different people have different needs. It’s clear that we really need to centre everything around our project strategy on the customer’s needs – and HP is starting to deliver against that kind of strategy.”
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