HP Envy x2 for $525: I had to buy one at that price

HP Envy x2 for $525: I had to buy one at that price

Summary: The HP Envy x2 tablet plus keyboard dock captured my attention when it was released, but the high price held me back. An online promotion got me to pull the trigger.


I like tablets with keyboard docks as made popular by the Transformer line of Android tablets by Asus. When HP entered the hybrid fray with the Envy x2, I was quick to check it out at a local retailer. I really liked it, but the $750 price tag put me off and the Envy x2 was off my wish list.

HP Envy x2
(Image: HP)

That changed tonight, when a Twitter friend (@MobileHG) pointed out that Office Depot has a promotion for the HP Envy x2 for just $599. That got my attention, as I believe the x2 is certainly worth that price.

I was about to pull the trigger when another Twitter friend (@jeffkibuule) pointed me to another promotion that is even better. Staples is also offering the Envy x2 for $599 and also has another promotion for Windows tablets that can be stacked on top of this one. It takes another $75 off, so the HP Envy x2 is only $525 for another few days.

That was enough to push me over the edge, so an HP Envy x2 will be here in a few days. The promotion includes free three-day shipping, so the deal couldn't be better.

I'll review the Envy x2 when it gets here, but these are the specs that have me excited:

  • OS: Windows 8

  • CPU: Intel Atom 1.8 GHz

  • Memory/storage: 2GB/64GB

  • Ports: 2x USB 2.0; HDMI

  • Audio: Beats Audio

  • Cameras: 1080p webcam (front); 8MP (rear)

  • Connectivity: wi-fi; Bluetooth

  • Battery life: 7+ hours tablet; 12+ hours with keyboard dock (has second battery)

  • Display: 11.6 inches, 1366x768

  • Weight: 1.5 lbs tablet, 3 lbs with keyboard dock.

Topics: Mobility, Hewlett-Packard, Tablets, Windows 8

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  • James, I was with you until I read "OS: Windows 8"

    Oh my. I wish you luck with that, my friend.
    PS: Why no USB 3.0 on so many of the newest tablets? Is it the expense, the size, what?
    • Atom

      A lot of the new, budget tablets use the Atom platform and the chipset doesn't support USB 3. The next generation of Atom (due Fall 2013) will supposedly support 64-bit and doubles the current performance, so they may also see fit to implement USB 3.

      Until then, I'm happy with my Samsung ATIV as it is. USB 2 is enough for keyboard, mouse etc. and Ethernet is available through the desktop dock.
      • A report from a couple of days ago

        Samsung ATIV has been withrawn from the European market due to poor sales.
        • RT only

          The withdrawn concerns only the Windows RT models, in a few select countries in Europe.
          • I think we'll probably see more of that

            So long as atom based tablets continue to come down to arm price ranges. RT has a place in enterprise situations, and it'll be good for a few consumers, but by and large the limitations of the rt OS will outstrip the advantages that arm hardware can provide.

            Due to power and batty limitations rt is common sense for a mini tablet, but to the standar 10/11 inches? You've got more than enough battery space as evidenced here.

            This is basically what I'm waiting for in the UK; something that can replace my netbook at netbook kind of prices. Personally I have no need for an icore tablet. I currently have a mini and previously had a nexus 7. Full windows 8 that runs 12 hours in netbook mode, and can be detached for tablet use (surfing/streaming). At twice the weight of my current mini, I'll still be using my mini/a mini tablet, but this is a perfect replacement to my now nearly 5 year old netbook that is showing it's age!

            If I were in the states, I'd have jumped on this offer too!
          • Acer Iconia W510

            @MarknWill The Acer Iconia W510 is available in the UK for £500 and features pretty much the exact same specs only it has a 10.1" screen instead of 11.6". I just got one of those and it's pretty great. Charged it up on Monday and didn't need to charge it again until Saturday! The HP is definitely better looking though, but is about £800 over here unfortunately.
          • Samsung ATIV

            I tried the Acer as well, but I went with the Samsung in the end. The slightly larger keyboard is much mpre comfortable to use and the WACOM stylus swung it for me.
          • It was researched

            The reports that I read simply said Samsung ATIV. Have some manners before you accuse people of not researching . . . and don't be so petty!
          • Wow

            Love my job, since I've been bringing in $5600… I sit at home, music playing while I work in front of my new iMac that I got now that I'm making it online.(Click Home information)
        • That was the rt version

          Do some research before posting
        • ATIV Tab

          Only the Tab has been withdrawn. The ATIV Smart PC is still being sold. Given that the Atom based Smart PC 70 Euros more than the Tab and it has full Windows 8 and double the storage, it isn't really a surprise the Tab doesn't sell.
          • Thankyou

            for the update. The several articles that I read only referred to ATIV and those articles also only said Europe and so it was reasonable to take the meaning as being the withdrawal of all version of ATIV from all European countries. It seems that Samsung later clarified their meaning.
    • Nah

      If you have a touch enabled mouse, track pad, or touch screen then Windows 8 works really well. It is those that don't have those things that find it awkward to use.

      The first thing I did with my machine was to add a Logitech wireless track pad and the experience was way better.
    • What good is it without Windows 8?

      a tablet running Windows 7? or a non x86 OS?

      may as well just buy a cheap tablet and laptop.

      Oh, now you're back to two totally different devices that can't do what the other unit does
      William Farrel
  • Have fun

    I really like my Samsung ATIV. The Envy X2 still costs over $1,000 over here!

    I love the fact that Windows 8 allows keyboard swapping (virtual layouts) mid sentence, from the keyboard itself, so I can switch languages on the fly and it automatically changes the spelling checker as well, at least in the integrated apps, like IE 10. That is a huge benefit over Android or iOS for anyone who has to work in multiple languages.

    The inking on the ATIV Smart PC, with the provided S-Pen is also excellent. I am still amazed at how accurate Windows is at deciphering my scrawl, and again, changing the language means I can switch between English, German and French at will. At first, I was not impressed when I tested one in the shop, it made a complete mess of my scrawl, then I noticed it was set to German and I was typing English, switching to German, it suddenly went from useless to 100% accurate!

    With Windows 8, tablets suddenly make sense, for me. I need to use a bunch of bespoke Windows applications on the move, so I need a laptop with me, but I liked the idea of a tablet, but couldn't see the point of lugging a tablet and laptop around. Then I tried some Windows 8 tablets and it suddenly made sense. Now I have a desktop dock as well and it can replace my desktop, laptop and provide tablet based mobility all in one device.

    I still need the desktop for heavy lifting, like image editing, but everything that I need on a daily basis is covered by the ATIV. It is a little sluggish at time, thanks to the Atom, but not frustratingly so and it is a compromise I am willing to pay for the 10 hours or so of mobility it affords me.
    • iOS definitely let's you switch languages mid sentence

      From the keyboard. Using the globe button.

      I'm with you in windows 8, but just saying it's not a feature to switch for. In my experience (1st gen diamondville n270 +gma 950) windows 8 pro on atom has been fine. It's been apps such as games it struggles with. It's fine for browser type games, but struggles with anything 3d. Most mobile aimed apps are fine.
      • Thanks

        I'll have another look, when I get my hands on one of thetest iPads at work. I had a look at an iPad the other week and didn't notice that.
    • It is under General->Keyboard->Keyboards...

      If you have more than 2 setup (I always have the emoji enabled), you get a second button on the virtual keyboard allowing to swap to different languages. iOS has had that since version 1.0 or so.
      • aha

        that could explain it. I have only used loaners from Germans, so they don't have a second keyboard set up. Although the Windows machines I used in shops all had German and English pre-installed.
    • umm

      Mac OS has done most of that for some time and I know it isn't touch screen but a used MBP has more utility than an ATOM based convertible Tablet.