The line-up of new laptops is important for HP’s spring sales, but it isn’t clear exactly how long it will take to get replacement chips. HP, much like every other computer maker, is anxiously awaiting delivery of Intel’s latest chip sets, which don’t have the previously announced flaw. Intel said it can ship chip sets in configurations that skirt the actual flaw; those shipments will resume in mid-February. But it will take longer to ship the actual replacement chips.
One of the common threads in the new laptops is the spreading of technologies that HP once used in only one or two special models. For instance, it uses better audio and cooling technolog across a broader number of laptops.
HP is updating a number of laptops across it Pavilion line-up, with the designs drawing inspiration from culture, art and fashion. The laptops stem from its MUSE philosophy, short for materials, usability, sensory appeal and experience, said Kevin Wentzel, technical marketing manager at HP. Introduced in May 2010, the MUSE philosophy aims for innovations in product design by offering a blend of alloys, metals, plastics and artisan-like elements for a sensory appeal. The new laptops can be personalized with a choice of 17 wallpapers designed by six artists from around the world.
Wentzel said the models use both Advanced Micro Devices’ Fusion chips and Intel’s Sandy Bridge processors, which combine graphics and a microprocessor on the same silicon chip. Intel said it has won more than 500 designs for Sandy Bridge, but it delayed the shipment of new chips because of a flaw in a chip set. Intel is busy replacing chips as soon as it can, but the company says delays of weeks may result.
The new models include the dv6 (15.6-inch screen) and dv7 (17.3-inch screen). Both are available in what HP calls a “dark umber” metal finish, using elements of its much-admired Envy line of laptops originally created by HP’s Voodoo PC designers. The machines also include HP’s Beats Audio four-way speakers, HP’s CoolSense cooling technology, and faster universal serial bus (USB 3.0) ports. The chips use second-generation Intel Core i5 or i7 processors, with an option for AMD Radeon 6000M graphics. The models also have HP SimplePass, a fingerprint reading technology that can quickly confirm your identity. Availability for the dv6 and dv7 is to be determined, as is the pricing.
HP is also launching new versions of its g-series laptops, including the g4, g6, and g7 notebooks. Those notebooks will be available on March 13 for $499, $449, and $599, respectively.