Wouldn’t it be nice to have a brand new HP laptop for under $500? Wouldn’t that be even more exciting if it came packed with Intel’s Kaby Lake processors? The updated devices, dubbed the HP ProBook 400 G4 Series, come with display options from 13 inches all the way to 17 inches in size, and according to HP, have a very specific niche market of “small business owners whose employees are style-oriented millennials”. That’s pretty cute. You would think “style-oriented millennials” would be sporting something like the new Inspiron 15 5000 and 17 5000 laptops from Dell, which come in about 7 different gorgeous colors.
Perhaps what HP has done with its ProBook 400 G4 laptops happens to be just enough, if not plentiful, in the department of “hip”. This isn’t to say a 30-40 year old couldn’t enjoy a nice, well-rounded and well-designed laptop. There’s no discriminating in the computer world (I hope I’m right by saying that, there isn’t something I’m missing, is there? My 92 year old grandma uses a cute tablet, and that’s a fact.
The five models include the ProBook 430 G4 ($599), 440 G4 ($529), 450 G4 ($599), 455 G4 ($499), and 470 G4 ($749), all of which possess a similar composition, with its slim wedge in a hue called “Asteroid Silver”. They range in weight from 3.28 pounds to 5.79 pounds, and all hold the MIL-STD 810G rating- meaning they may all withstand drops, shocks, vibrations and extreme hot or cold. The HD displays for each model are as follows: the ProBook 430 G4 has a 13.3-inch display, the 440 is a 14-incher, the 450 and 455 are 15.6-inchers, while the 470 is the giant with 17 inches of display. Full HD and touchscreen is optional for all laptops (except for the ProBook 455 G4 and 470 G4, which opts out of the touchscreen), but of course increase the cost.
Under the hood, we’ve got Intel’s latest! These include the 7th gen Kaby Lake CPUs in all models. However, the HP ProBook 455 G4 offers AMD’s 7th Gen A-Series APUs as another option. As far as graphics, the lovely Nvidia has provided its mid-range GeForce 930MX GPUs, and for memory, all models max out at 16GB of DDR4 SDRAM. Ports and connectivity include USB 3.0 Type-C, Ethernet, VGA, HDMI, USB 3.0, USB 2.0, an SD card reader, headphone jack, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0. For battery life, HP’s blog claims up to 16 whole hours. Wow. This is a 39-54 percent improvement in battery life among the ProBook line, says the company.
So this revamp of HP’s ProBooks aren’t as style-oriented as you would think, despite HP really wanting you to believe it to be true. It doesn’t help that they are going up against a slew of laptops and hybrid 2-in-1s that are boasting gorgeous color. What you do get with the ProBook line is a big “E” for effort. HP even posted a blog regarding the new release of these models, asking millennials what they think about business portables. Sure they want style, color, and ease-of-use/portability. Guess what kids, so do plenty of others, including old farts that are business travelers, or work at home moms. More than this focus on style, important facets in purchasing a new laptop (although this ranges from person and profession), involves performance, durability, convenience, handiness and battery life. These are all important, and although HP feels the need to market with a superficial tactic, the ProBooks are luckily more than just nice looking. They definitely have all of this going for them.
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