When people talk about the future of technology, a lot of things come to mind. It might be flying cars, hover boards, hologram computers, or even life-like robots. And while these ideas seem to be getting closer to reality, we’ve still got a long way to go to get there.
HP, on the other hand, has a more grounded vision of the future — more specifically, the office of the future.
Earlier this month in Singapore, HP announced a host of new devices meant for enterprise users, specifically products designed from the ground up to be more efficient, secure, and built for collaboration.
From a tech innovation standpoint, none of these new products are necessarily groundbreaking, but they could just be what we need.
Don’t be too quick on thinking these devices just belong in an office, HP assures us that these products were made with its everyday consumers in mind, whether it be the average Joe looking for a daily driver, or the small business looking to set up its first computer. The brand believes the unique features it puts in its products are a differentiator from competitors rather than a feature the customer actually pays for.
Letʻs take a look at some of the products and services HP introduced in its live office showcase, and how they fit into its vision of the future.
HP ELITE X3
While Windows 10 for mobile hasn’t really caught on for most consumers, HP is targeting those who would want to be able to efficiently work with their files on a mobile device. With the Elite x3 smartphone, just connect it to a monitor and itʻll power up a close-to-desktop experience — a Windows 10 mobile function more popularly known as Continuum.
HP also introduced a case for the Elite x3 with a built-in barcode scanner, which is a mobile scanning solution enabling users to check product prices and other related information on the fly.
HP ELITE SLICE
Another device announced was the HP Elite Slice, a clever approach to the modular PC. With different modules that snap on top of each other, this may be one of the cleanest implementations of adding capabilities to an already existing desktop system I’ve ever seen. A wireless charging cover for your phone, a speaker module, and an optical disk drive are some of the existing slices available, all of which could be installed in a couple of seconds. With this much flexibility paired with its compact size, I can see how this could become the centerpiece of every desktop system in an office.
HP Z2 Mini
Similar to the proportions of the HP Elite Slice, the HP Z2 Mini is a workstation-class PC packing an NVIDIA Quadro graphics card in a tiny package. It was shown powering six high-resolution monitors side by side during the showcase, all of which were shown running various tasks from media playback to 3D animation. NVIDIA Quadro cards are known to be great for digital design software but fall short in gaming when compared to their consumer-friendly GeForce counterparts.
HP also announced a slew of new laptops across its entire range. The HP Elitebook series comes with a function that reduces 95 percent of visible light coming from the display at angles beyond 35 degrees at a press of a button; this is helpful in cases where you wouldnʻt want the person beside you on the plane or bus ride to be snooping into what youʻre working on.
Other devices consist of 2-in-1 convertibles, flip-outs, and even a detachable point of sale system. Who knows, the next fast food establishment you go to might be the one coming to your table to take orders.
All its new devices come with different security solutions. Some of these include the ability to always boot the device on its last good state; BIOS level security to make sure your computer is protected from the moment itʻs turned on; multi-factor authentication that requires a passcode, fingerprint, and face scanning; and many more.
The gadgets also come with features for collaboration, such as Bang and Olufsen-powered speakers, noise cancellation software, and various wireless solutions for better communication across team members.
While prices and availability arenʻt available in all regions at the moment, HP will be rolling out the devices across Asia in the following months.