HP Pavilion dm1: Hands on with integrated 4G LTE

The HP Pavilion dm1 is now available with integrated 4G LTE from Verizon Wireless. I have taken it for a test drive and find it to be a solid notebook for travelers.

HP has straddled the netbook/laptop fence with the Pavilion dm1, a 11.6-inch laptop that is powered by AMD. The size makes it as portable as a netbook, and the AMD processor keeps things humming nicely. Verizon is now offering the dm1 with integrated 4G LTE, and sent one over for me to test. Once I got past the out of box nightmare experience, the dm1 has proven to be a solid laptop.


Image Gallery: HP Pavilion dm1 on Verizon with integrated 4G LTE
Image Gallery: Charge
Image Gallery: Charge
Verizon lists the Pavilion dm1 as a netbook on its site, but the specs indicate a "real" laptop is inside the case.

Specs:

  • CPU: AMD Dual-core E-350, 1.6 GHz
  • Display: 11.6-inch, 1366x768
  • Memory: 2GB
  • Storage: 320GB @ 7,200 rpm
  • OS: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
  • Battery: 6-cell (9.5 hour quoted)
  • Network: Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n); 3G (EVDO); 4G LTE
  • Dimensions:11.42 x 8.43 x 0.8-1.2 inches; 3.52 pounds
  • Price: $599 with two year contract ($769 without contract)

The dm1 is very portable and I find it a joy to use. The unit doesn't get hot and I am seeing about 6 hours of battery life in the real world, even with the AMD processor. The trackpad is a buttonless design that works very well.

I have been using the Pavilion dm1 for two days and it has been a solid performer. The Verizon 4G LTE network has been fast as expected, and I have used it exclusively for this test. I have not connected via Wi-Fi even once, it has been all 4G through the included Verizon Access Manager. The network is so fast that is is undetectable from a "real" high-speed Wi-Fi connection.

Personally I don't find laptops with integrated 4G to be the best way to go. I prefer using a wireless hotspot like my Samsung 4G LTE Mobile Hotspot or the Novatel MiFi on Verizon, as that lets me share the connection with up to 5 devices. Having 4G embedded in the notebook is convenient, but restricts the connection to just the one device without extra effort. If you are a frequent traveler who only carries a laptop on trips, the dm1 with integrated 4G may be a good fit. Laptops use data more heavily than other mobile devices, so I would get at least a 5GB/ month plan if not bigger to avoid the risk of overage charges.

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