That leaves industry giants like HP, Dell, Lenovo and others to scrape the bottom of the barrel for scraps of profits while trying to differentiate their products from competitor’s products that look and work just like theirs. Here’s how HP is doing Windows PC notebooks and tablets like a Mac and an iPad.
I Want One With An Apple Logo
Years ago Apple decided that a personal computer does not a good tablet make, so the iPad became its own line of products, fully distinct from the Mac and OS X.
Was that a good move on Apple’s part? iPad sales may be dropping but there’s not one tablet maker on planet earth that would keep their business in exchange for Apple’s tablet numbers.
Venerable HP introduced a new Windows PC notebook tablet hybrid that I would like to see from Apple.
It’s called the Spectre x360 laptop, which is more of a notebook with a bendable, flexible screen, different than Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3 detachable screen, but actually much better.
Think MacBook Air with a 360-degree tilting screen that kinda sorta mostly doubles as what Windows PC makers call a tablet– a thin PC with a touchscreen that runs Windows.
Here’s what it looks like when tilted up like a vertical stand (keyboard on the backside).
HP’s Spectre x360 comes with four basic modes instead of a detachable screen. The first is the Stand Up mode whereby the screen is tilted, easy to view and touch, but the keyboard faces the surface.
The second mode is the photo above, called Tent mode, again with a title and flexible, but with the keyboard pointing backwards. The third way to use the Spectre is in tablet mode, which is cool looking in one view, but actually rather funky, with the keyboard swung around to the backside of the screen, making for a somewhat thick tablet, even though the device is thin like a MacBook Air.
Finally, there’s traditional notebook mode which sandwiches the keyboard between the case and screen.
Battery life of the 13-inch HP Spectre x360 is estimated at more than 12 hours, similar to the 13-inch MacBook Air, but the HP has similar specifications, though with a lower starting price, a similar Intel CPU, the same RAM, but with an HDMI port, DisplayPort, and three USB ports. The high end model has an Intel Core i7 CPU, the higher resolution Quad HD touchscreen, 8GB of RAM, and a 512GB SSD for $1,400; far less than a comparable MacBook Air, but with the option to double up as a thick tablet.
In short, the HP Spectre x360 is a compelling hardware device that looks much like a MacBook Air but can function somewhat like a thick tablet with a built-in keyboard, that’s slightly heavier than a 13-inch MacBook Air. The whole thing is ruined, of course, by running Windows 8.1 but the whole package is compelling if all you compare are the bullet points.
I wouldn’t mind seeing an iPad with a built-in keyboard, but I’d be more impressed with a thinner MacBook Air with a detachable touchscreen that doubled as an iPad and ran iOS apps.