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Technology Bits

2 in 1 Mobile Computer

posted by Greg Fyn

Dec 11

When you've been in IT as long as I have, so many new products come on the market every year that it becomes a "ho-hum" experience. It's been a very long time since there's been a new and innovative device that has caught my eye...and my attention.

The new HP 2 in 1 mobile computer has certainly been one of the most exciting products I've seen in a long time. I had a request from a local police department to find a tablet style device that could be easily used in the field or in the office to fill out reports and access records hosted on their server.

HP Pro X2 series computers seems to fit the bill. We're beginning testing of this product by integrating one of these machines to make sure that it will be the right product for the job, and if successful we'll roll out to the rest of the department.

The Pro X2 comes in a variety of models ranging from a pro-consumer model i3 up to the i5 with VPro suited for business class usage.

The for some of the models computer/tablet part of the machine can be purchased separately from the typing dock; but we chose to go with the keyboard dock because nobody wants to type for an extended time using an on-screen keyboard.

The one thing that impresses me most is the quality of the materials that's used to manufacture the device. This 2 in 1 is sold at a touch of a premium; but in my opinion long term reliability is more important than saving a few dollars in the price.

The machine has many useful features:

  • A front and rear camera located on the tablet part. 
  • The rear facing camera has a built in flash.
  • Some models come with a fingerprint reader. (The one we are testing does)
  • Some models support MicroSim cards to connect directly to cellular Internet services.
  • Tablet part has full touch capability and includes a stylus for those who wish to hand-write.
  • The keyboard unit has a quick-release button.
  • If you turn the tablet on its side, it will change from landscape to portrait mode and back.
  • In mobile mode you still have a USB port, you'll have two when docked to the keyboard unit.
  • HP says the device will give you 8.5 hours of battery life, so it should last a full shift.

Models have solid state drives which perform better and more reliably than the traditional ones. They range in size from 64Gb to 256Gb.

My initial assessment is that this machine is well worth the money...I will post an update after our pilot project has been completed.