​Windows 10 laptops: HP just updated its best-sellers with new premium features

HP's notebooks and mobile workstations are getting new security and productivity tools.

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Image: HP Inc

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HP Inc has updated its best-selling business line -- the HP EliteBook 800 series -- with new security and collaboration tools previously only offered on premium models. The company has also added new features to its ZBook 14u/15u mobile workstations and introduced a new Thunderbolt dock.

HP said the new devices use the premium design previously used on its EliteBook 1000 series, such as anodized aluminum covers.

The updated EliteBook 800 series and ZBook 14u/15u workstations passed MIL-STD-810G testing and are more easily serviceable than previous generations, said HP. The ZBook 14u/15u also passed two additional MIL-STD tests for bench handling and crash hazard shock for unpredictable conditions in technical environments.

Both the new notebooks and mobile workstations feature a noise-cancelling microphone, which HP said can remove unwanted sounds when the laptop is being used to make a call; it can also boost 360-degree voice pick-up when in conference mode.

All of these devices come with the HP Premium Collaboration Keyboard, which features built-in keys to easily manage calls. They also include HP PhoneWise, which lets you wirelessly pair your smartphone and your PC, so you can text and call from the PC via iOS and Android devices.

The HP EliteBook 800 series feature 8th-generation Intel Core processors with vPro. These laptops promise up to 14 hours of battery life and include HP Fast Charge, which can get a battery to 50 percent charge in 30 minutes. The EliteBook 840 and the HP EliteBook 850 G5 both benefit from discrete AMD Radeon RX 540 GPUs for graphics-intensive workloads.

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The ZBook 14u/15u mobile workstations feature 8th-generation quad-core Core processors with vPro and discrete AMD Radeon Pro graphics. HP said the ZBook 14u is 28 percent thinner than the previous generation. The ZBook 14u/15u mobile workstations now feature HP's Sure View privacy screen.

The devices also come with Windows Hello and HP's Endpoint Security Controller, a physically isolated, cryptographically secured chip that monitors, protects and recovers the BIOS, the operating system, and critical applications in the event of an attack. For example, HP Sure Run uses this feature to monitor key processes and applications, such as antivirus, alerting both the user and IT if there are any changes, and restarting those processes automatically if stopped. HP Sure Recover offers secure, automated, network-based software image recovery with only an internet connection. According to HP, employees will be able to reimage a PC with HP's or a company's own software image even if the entire hard drive is wiped, without the help of IT.

HP said its research showed that 62 percent of laptop-users work from more than one location and 81 percent work during their personal time, noting that this means security is increasingly important. Nearly 70 percent of organizations have reported compromised laptops in the past 24 months, said HP.

HP also announced its new Thunderbolt Dock G2. The dock provides power, supports up to two 4K displays, and also has an optional audio conferencing module.

The 13-inch HP EliteBook 830 G5 is expected to be available in February for a starting price of $1,049. The 14-inch 840 G5 will start at $1,029 and the 850 G5 will start at $1,039. The ZBook 14u G5 starts at $1,099 and the 15u G5 has a starting price of $1,109.

The HP Elite Thunderbolt Dock G2 is expected to be available in May, but pricing has not been announced yet.

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