No, it's not exciting as HP copying Lenovo's Yoga design, but hey, tablet news is still news. In addition to launching a consumer laptop, Hewlett-Packard is using Mobile World Congress to unveil a couple new Windows business tablets. Chief among these is the ProPad 600, a 10.1-inch device intended for the small biz market. HP hasn't revealed the price yet, but it's obviously going to cost less than the company's existing ElitePad 900 tablet -- the move to plastic build materials makes that pretty clear. That plainer design aside, it offers comparable performance, with a 64-bit Intel Baytrail chip, dual 2MP/8MP cameras and a 1,920 x 1,200, optically bonded display that supports pen input. Connectivity-wise, you're looking at micro-HDMI-out, along with a microSD slot and a standard micro-USB port for charging. Really, then, it's not that different from the current ElitePad, except there's no 3G and it's not compatible with HP's so-called Smart Jackets. Again, no word on price, but look for it to arrive sometime in mid-April.
Oh, and speaking of the ElitePad 900, HP is refreshing it with some updated specs. Now called the ElitePad 1000, it rocks the same aluminum design as the original, except it steps up to a 64-bit processor and a sharper 1,920 x 1,200 screen -- the same one used on the new ProPad 600. It also has an LTE radio, and trades a USB 2.0 port for USB 3.0. Otherwise, the battery life is the same, at around 10 hours, and it fits all the same optional Smart Jackets as the old model. That's mainly good news for IT guys, who may have already purchased productivity and power covers to issue to employees. At any rate, the tablet should land in March, with a starting price of $739.
HP ElitePad 900
HP ProPad 600