PCs with 3D- and virtual reality (VR) features may be all the rage at this year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, but plenty of folks still crack open a Windows notebook to get work done or to enjoy some simple downtime.
For those users, Microsoft's hardware partners have introduced new generation of ultraportable PCs, complete with powerful processors, eye-popping screens and slimmer dimensions.
Dell, for example, added a 2-in-1 PC to its premium XPS product lineup. Featuring a touch screen that flips into tablet mode, the new XPS 13 2-in-1 delivers 15 hours of battery life. It also qualifies as the world's smallest 2-in-1 in the 13-inch category, Dell asserts.
The QHD+ (3,200 pixels by 1,800 pixels) screen on the XP3 13 2-in-1 displays more than 5.7 million pixels. It retains the distinctively thin bezel of its predecessors. Later this year, Dell expects to roll out a high dynamic range (HDR) option capable of producing even more vibrant visuals than are possible with conventional display technologies.
Dell has started taking orders on its new XPS 13 2-in-1 on Jan. 5. The PC maker is also offering a "business configuration" with management software and Intel's Kaby Lake seventh-generation Core vPro processors, a family of chips with enhanced hardware-based security and remote management capabilities.
Rival HP Inc. debuted a svelte new convertible PC for business users, the EliteBook x360. Highlights include an optional 13.3-inch 4K display with stylus support and an infrared (IR) camera that can be used with Microsoft's Windows Hello biometric login technology.
Like most new Windows PCs at CES this year, HP's EliteBook x360 is powered by Kaby Lake processors from Intel. An optional PCIe solid-state drive (SSD) provides speedy access to files and user data.
According to HP's estimates, users can squeeze up to 16 hours and 30 minutes out of system's battery. The company's fast-charging technology can recharge the new EliteBook's batteries to the halfway mark in just 30 minutes. Bolstering the device's mobile credentials is optional 3G/4G LTE connectivity for those times a WiFi network isn't in ranch
On the security front, the company's built-in Sure Start Gen3 technology protects against sophisticated attacks that target the system's BIOS. In the event an attacker somehow alters the BIOS, Sure Start can automatically restore it without user or administrator intervention.
Meanwhile, Toshiba introduced the Portégé X20W, a 12.5-inch convertible PC that's banking on a lightweight magnesium case and premium Harman Kardon stereo speakers to attract the attention of business users. Toshiba boasts that the device's speakers can adapt to the screen's position to deliver strong, clear audio when the screen is arranged at any angle, enabling impromptu presentations.
Toshiba was able to stretch the X20W's battery life to 16 hours. Again, Intel's Kaby Lake chips provide the processing muscle and an SSDs fetch files quickly. The PC's 12.5-inch full HD display (1,920 pixels by 1,080 pixels) is protected by Corning's latest Gorilla Glass 4, helping prevent damage to the screen if it slips off an airplane tray table.