HP ProBook x360 Education Edition can survive the playground bully


— 10:24 AM on December 1, 2016

Remember back when laptops were first becoming a thing? Some folks thought we'd see every high-schooler carrying around their own personal PC by now, some 20 years later. That may not have happened, but that hasn't stopped companies like HP from making PCs targeted directly at classrooms. The new ProBook x360 11 Education Edition is an 11" 2-in-1 PC with a 360° hinge explicitly designed to be "student-friendly."

HP says the all-in-one passes MIL-STD 810G certification, so it should be resistant to minor spills, jostles, and drops. The machine comes with the standard user-facing webcam, as well as another camera in the keyboard base that allows students to use the screen as a viewfinder while filming with the keyboard folded over in tablet mode. HP pre-loads its "School Pack" software bundle that includes networked software allowing teachers to share information and assignments directly to students' PCs. The software apparently also supports personalized lesson planning, social media integration, and performance analytics.

The machine itself is powered by either a Celeron N3350 or Pentium N4200. Both are Apollo Lake-family ultra-mobile SoCs. HP equips the machine with 8GB of DDR3L-1600 memory, and the standard store configuration offers 64GB of eMMC flash. Optionally, buyers can upgrade to an M.2 SSD. It's nice to see HP finally offering solid-state storage—even eMMC—as standard even in a budget-oriented machine like this. For example, the mass-market version of the Pavilion x360 11t uses a 500GB hard drive.

The display on the ProBook x360 11 EE only has a 1366x768 resolution, but given the machine's diminutive size, it ought to be quite sharp. HP uses an SVA panel under Gorilla Glass in the display, so it should be both vibrant and durable. For networking connectivity, the laptops include 2x2 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2, and a Gigabit Ethernet port, an unusual accoutrement in this size class. HP also sticks a HDMI port, two USB 3.0 Type-A ports and a single USB 3.0 Type-C port on the machine. HP says this machine is only sold to educators via contract, so we don't have exact pricing information.

 
   
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