HP launches new notebooks, mobile devices

HP launches new notebooks, mobile devices

HP has introduced two new notebooks at CeBIT America, as it prepares several new mobile products for the second half of the year.

The vendor wanted to lead the market for notebooks, which was one of the few segments showing “robust” growth, vice-president of worldwide marketing for HP’s notebook business unit, Kevin Frost said.

In addition to the CeBIT announcement, HP planned to launch new mobile products in August, and would make an announcement in September about mobile and wireless printing.

Worldwide, HP leads all vendors in notebook shipments with a 15.9 per cent of the market just ahead of rivals Dell (14.5 per cent) and Toshiba (14.3 per cent), according to data from IDC.

While notebooks have been a bright spot among PC sales to corporations, shipment growth to businesses is still flat overall, as compared with the strong notebook growth found in the consumer market, director of research for ARS, Matt Sargent, said.

HP’s new nc4000 notebook weighed only 1.58kg, and was targeted at business customers who travel often, Frost said. It came with Intel’s Pentium M processor, but used wireless technology from Atheros Communications.

Customers can opt for a trimode wireless chip that connects to three wireless Internet standards currently in use, 802.11b, 802.11a, and 802.11g. The notebook comes without a wireless chip in its base configuration, and customers can also select a 802.11b/802.11g chip from Atheros.

Making the wireless chip an option gave HP an advantage over rivals such as Dell among corporate customers, Sargent said. Dell’s Latitude D400 comes with wireless as a standard option.

A base configuration of the nc4000 with a 1.4GHz Pentium M processor, 256MB of DDR (double data rate) SDRAM (synchronous dynamic RAM), a 40GB hard drive, and a 12.1-inch display costs $US1699. Dell’s D400 is priced at $US1499 in a base configuration with less memory and a smaller hard drive.

The other new notebook, the nx7000, is designed more for the occasional traveller, or small to medium-size businesses, Frost said. It was based on

Intel’s Centrino package of chips, with the Pentium M processor, an Intel chipset, and the company’s Pro/Wireless 2100 chip for 802.11b networks. For now, HP is only offering this notebook with Intel’s 802.11b technology, but Intel is expected to release an 802.11g chip and a trimode version later this year, Frost said.

This notebook also comes with a 15.4-inch widescreen display.

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