HP Pulls Out the Stops for Its Spring Product Launch
Hybrid working, smart office, and greater flexibility are behind HP’s new offerings
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Tucked away in a corner of South London—behind the door of a small, terraced house—HP launched its new range of creative, hybrid-working, and gaming solutions for spring 2022 to an intimate gathering. The stylish location (an old violin factory turned residential dwelling that can be converted into a corporate space) reinforced the themes of change and progress HP has aligned with. This refreshed approach, evident in HP’s rhetoric used throughout the expo, is a reaction to the drastic changes in the way we now work. HP made no secret or apology for the fact that this is the main reason why its approach has had to change.
And it’s worked! Whilst a great deal of the technology on show is already well-established, much of it has been stripped back by HP and rebuilt to better suit evolving workflow trends. To keep up with other major industry players, HP could be forgiven for speeding through changes to meet current consumer demands.
This was not the case, it seems. Sleek, clean designs with subtle, thoughtful features better suited to the hybrid work environment adorn its new solutions. All seem carefully thought out to make the end user's life easier. It was evident that each stage of the expo was constructed around the thematic product space to drive home the irresistible, shiny bits of each group. A magpie would need to hire a van to collect their fill of shiny new toys!
It's Not All About Looks All the Time…
Aesthetics aside, HP’s focus on hybrid working, smart office solutions, and versatility across all technology offerings was palpable. Take gaming, for example. The new Omen [by HP] 16.1’’ Gaming Laptop has all the enhanced features expected from a high-performance device, such as an AMD Ryzen 7 6800H processor and Omen Tempest cooling technology, but it can also be used for schoolwork or as a work-from-home device. After all, it also sports a wide-vision HD camera and AI noise removal technology for greater clarity on audio and video calls.
Why buy two types of the same product when you can have a flexible, high-quality solution rolled into one? Or, at least, that seems to be HP’s messaging here, and I’m inclined to agree with their rationale. Current trends suggest that consumers want products and services to be supplied by the same provider; why shouldn’t this be extended to product usage too? The example list goes on: HyperX Cloud Alpha Wireless Headphones, with its long battery life and updated microphone technology, can easily be adapted for professional use at home or in the office. All of it was very impressive, it must be said, but it’s the subtle improvements HP has made that are more striking.
There’s No Need to Reinvent the Wheel
Taller monitors are not a ground-breaking idea, admittedly, and not a particularly new one. But HP’s consumer research conducted during the height of the pandemic indicated a need for better screen experiences for hybrid and creative workers. Aspect ratio variants (other than 16:9) are possible on devices such as the new Spectre and Envy PCs—again, driving home the versatility theme to suit a variety of end user needs. Small changes such as these help to reassure users that care and thought has directed these decisions. And although HP haven’t reinvented the wheel per se, it has adapted it to better suit the needs of a rapidly changing market.
Considering the creative offering, a couple of standout products must be mentioned. The Z34CG3 WQHD Curved Display is one example. Again, HP is not making groundbreaking changes here, but it sure is making it look good. A sleek, metallic design with a sharp screen quality certainly made my head turn…not to mention its imposing size at 34". An integrated 5MP webcam that pops up out of the top of the frame to increase privacy after use, dual mics, front firing speakers, anti-glare, a wireless charging dock at the base of the screen…all these aid the hybrid working cause, but also make the user experience so much more fluid. They are executed really well, too. Like all the products, it’s been designed to streamline work processes and support the end user as much as possible.
Keypoint Intelligence Opinion
You can tell HP has missed putting on a show. The sleek, modern venue and intimate group size gave an element of exclusivity to proceedings. Virtual showcases are worth their weight in gold, but they cannot easily replicate the tactile, friendly approach of a physical showcase. HP’s product line-up feels refreshed and upgraded, ready to meet the needs and challenges of an ever-evolving work environment. With the technology available; the versatility of use for each device; and their modern, clean look, I’d be happy to have one of their showcase devices on my desk! HP is definitely one to watch this year.