Thin and light was the mantra at the recent HP Global Influencers Summit, with a large majority of the 80 new products launched at the Summit offering sleek and lightweight designs. We trawled the extensive product line-up, and here’s our pick of what caught…nay, grabbed our attention!
Spectre XT: Leading the charge is the slick Spectre XT ultrabook, featuring brushed metal trim and specs — a 13-in display, 128GB/256GB Solid State Drive storage, an Intel Core i5 processor with 4GB of RAM all at 15mm thickness and under 1.4kg — that bring it in line with the best ultrabooks around. And unlike a number of ultrabooks that scrimp on connectivity options, the Spectre XT is packed to the gills with ports, including two fast USB 3.0 ports, an HDMI port for direct connection to your TV and a fold-out wired network jack. Even though this is targeted at business professionals, the XT isn’t all work and no play — multimedia mavens are taken care of as well with Beats Audio sound pumping out of four speakers and a claimed battery life of upto eight hours on one charge.
Sleekbooks: No, this isn’t a new form factor or category, it’s just a marketing term to describe notebooks that don’t meet all of Intel’s rigid criteria for ultrabooks. Packing in looks that are nearly identical to their ultrabook brethren, the HP sleekbooks feature AMD processors, traditional hard drives and plastic casings. While the offerings on display were nice, one couldn’t help but feel this new nomenclature could potentially confuse customers who are still trying to wrap their heads around what sets an ultrabook apart from a regular notebook. No matter what they’re called, sleekbooks will be less expensive than ultrabooks — an ultrabook-esque form factor for a smaller hole in the wallet is good news!
OfficeJet 150 mobile all-in-one: It’s 3.5cm by 17.1cm by 9cm, and weighs just 3.1 kg with the lithium-ion battery inserted. Say hello to the OfficeJet 150, the world’s first all-in-one, a printer-scanner-copier you can truly carry around with you. It comes with Bluetooth tech that lets you print directly from your mobile/ laptop and can print 500 pages or scan 400 pages on a single battery charge.
Glaring omissions: You’d think that with 80 new products launched here, a tablet or a smartphone might have made its way into the line-up. Not so but HP did reveal plans to launch a Windows 8 tablet for business users in the near future.
Quite literally the gold standard for creative pros, a new release of Adobe’s Creative Suite is something to look forward to. And with Creative Suite 6 (CS6), Adobe has released new versions of all the most notable products — Photoshop, lllustrator, Dreamweaver, Premiere Pro and Flash — so how does CS6 fare?
Take Photoshop for example. The photo-editing software gets 3D editing capabilities, as well as a speed boost and my personal favourite — content aware move. Shockingly easy to use, content aware move lets you move around any piece of a photo with minimal disturbance to the pixels around it and the software automatically replaces the background in a natural way. InDesign, Adobe’s page design software, gets a big boost as well, right from additional layout options to the ability to export designs to a variety of platforms like the iPad, Kindle Fire, and smartphones, without creating separate versions for each. Many of the other apps, such as the Premiere Pro and Illustrator apps don’t get drastic new features, but pretty much every app benefits from under-the-hood performance and speed bumps.
Although you can buy the suite or individual components in a multitude of bundles, there is one drastically different option for CS6 users — Creative Cloud — everything Adobe has to offer, no holds barred, starting from $49.99 per month. Gives folks like freelancers the short duration access they need to some of the apps at a fraction of the price of owning them. All in all, CS6 is a solid upgrade that will reach out to all sorts of digital and creative professionals.
• Price: Starting from Rs 78,288 for CS6
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Quick look: BlackBerry Curve 9220
Pros: New 7.1 OS, good battery life, BBM key, Social Feeds (to integrate all your social networks in one screen)
Cons: Heavy price tag for Blackberry (BBM, email) offerings when compared to Android competition, no 3G or GPS, average picture quality, plasticky keypad
Price: Rs 10,990