You might say the day is never really done in consumer technology news. Your workday, however, hopefully draws to a close at some point. This is the Daily Roundup on Engadget, a quick peek back at the top headlines for the past 24 hours -- all handpicked by the editors here at the site. Click on through the break, and enjoy.
HP's business PCs have always been surprisingly pretty. Not that good looks are high on our list of criteria, mind you, but at the very least they make a strong impression. Now that companies have gotten more comfortable with tablets (and Windows 8 in particular) HP is selling the ElitePad 900, its first Win 8 tablet built for the enterprise. Like all those EliteBook laptops that came before it, it has a metal chassis that's not only sleek, but meets the military's MIL-Spec standards too. Otherwise, it has everything you'd expect from a business tablet: support for pen input, mobile broadband and security features like TPM. It's also being sold alongside various accessories, including some cases that add further functionality besides just protection from scratches. With a starting price of $699 for the 32GB model, though, it's a little more expensive than its competitors. Does that mean it's a little bit better too?
Gallery: HP ElitePad 900 review
You know your tablet platform has made it when you've scored a supply deal with an airline, whether it's for the passengers or the staff. Microsoft undoubtedly feels that kind of validation now that Emirates has decided to give Windows 8 PCs a try. The air carrier will eventually outfit all its flights with HP ElitePad 900 slates, each loaded a custom Knowledge Driven Inflight Service (KIS) app, to help crew and customers alike. Attendants will get feedback and a heads-up on what to expect from everyone onboard; passengers will have chances to make their voices heard and upgrade their seat classes on the spot. Only 100 of the tablets will be in use by the end of January, but the 1,000 ElitePads needed for all aircraft should be active before 2013 is over. We just hope the rollout is quick enough to let us splurge on a sleep-friendly seat during a long trip to Dubai.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
HP couldn't help but harsh the mellow of cutting-edge workers when it revealed the ElitePad 900 wouldn't ship until January. Still, there's less chance of any setbacks now that we know the FCC has rubber stamped the Windows 8 tablet. The version passing through the agency is a 3G model for mobile road warriors and touts the 850MHz, 1,700MHz and 1,900MHz bands we'd expect to for HSPA on AT&T, T-Mobile and Canadian networks. Few other surprises exist; we're mostly happy to know that NFC exists alongside dual-band 802.11n WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0. No, the approval won't be much consolation to the suits and ties wanting a tablet of their own as of yesterday, but it should be a relief to IT managers planning a much more creative use of the company budget in 2013.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
Remember those hazy days of summer when HP ran an ad during the Olympics, slipped in a a shot of an unannounced tablet and thought we wouldn't notice? (P'shaw!) Well, you can finally lay your speculation to rest, as HP just formally unveiled the mystery tab, along with a slew of accessories. It's called the ElitePad 900 and, as rumored, it's a 10-inch Windows 8 slate meant for business users, with features like pen input, drive encryption and optional 3G / 4G.
Like HP's high-end EliteBook laptops, the ElitePad has a premium look, marked by a machined aluminum back cover and 400-nit IPS display coated in Gorilla Glass. Also similar to the EliteBooks, it meets the military's MIL-spec 810G durability requirements, and can withstand three-foot drops, among other accidents. All told, it weighs 1.5 pounds and measures 9.2mm thick. Going by weight, that's more along the lines of what you'd expect from a larger, 11-inch tablet, but 1.5 pounds is still manageable, especially considering how armored this thing is.
On the inside, it runs an Atom-based Intel Clover Trail processor, buffered by up to 2GB of RAM. Like so many other systems with this kind of chip, it promises about 10 hours of runtime -- a clear improvement over similar devices packing Core i5 CPUs. Storage-wise, you'll have your choice between a 32 or 64GB SSD. The screen has a resolution of 1,280 x 800, making it the one feature likely to disappoint power users. Take a tour around the device and you'll find an 8-megapixel rear camera and a 1080p shooter up front for video chats. Hidden behind a service door on the back are two slots: one for microSD cards, and another for 3G / 4G SIMs.
And how 'bout those accessories? In addition to the tablet, HP will be selling two so-called SmartJackets, cases that do a little more than just shield the device from wear and tear. One of them, for instance, has two USB ports, HDMI output, a full-size memory card slot and room for an optional battery slice. That battery, by the way, has a capacity of about eight hours, so while the case does add some heft it could be worth it if you need a PC that will last through a flight from New York to Tokyo. As for the second case, its defining feature is a built-in keyboard, which plugs directly into the tablet.
Though HP announced the ElitePad 900 today, the tablet won't go on sale here in the US until January. Hopefully we'll also get a final price as we get closer to that launch date. Luckily, we've already gotten a chance to play with it, so meet us after the break for hands-on photos and a short walk-through video detailing our first impressions.Permalink | | Email this | Comments