HP Readies New Desktops for EnterprisesBy Scott Ferguson | Print
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Despite a failing market for desktop PCs, HP believes that its new line of desktopssome of which meet new EPA energy standardswill entice business customers with long life cycles.
Hewlett-Packard is ramping up its desktop line with additions to four models that will emphasize energy efficiency and long life cycles for business customers.
As it has with other models in its Compaq line, the Palo Alto, Calif., company will offer Intel's Core 2 Duo processors in two of these desktops. In addition, one model, the HP Compaq dc5750, will support Advanced Micro Devices' Athlon 64 X2 dual-core processor.
HP plans on introducing the new features in these desktops at the Green California Summit, which starts March 13.
When HP first introduced this line of desktops in September, the company emphasized the inclusion of high-performance processors, better supporting chip sets, security and manageability.
This time, HP is placing the emphasis on power efficiency.
With the high-end Compaq dc7700 and the midrange Compaq dc5700 and dc7550 models, HP will offer configurations that will give users 80 percent energy efficiency in these desktops, said Nancy Bowman, an HP product manager for North America.
In addition, Bowman said when the 80 percent energy efficiency technology is combined with new "idle power" consumption requirements, these desktops will meet the latest requirements of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Energy Star program.
The new version of Energy Star, called 4.0, will be the first changes the EPA has made to the program in 15 years. The EPA announced the new requirements in October and the new standards are expected to go into effect in July.
By announcing that some of its desktops will meet these requirements early, Bowman said HP is looking to make its desktops attractive to enterprises concerned about energy consumption and power costs, as well as businesses looking to implement "green" policies.
"I think these desktops really show HP's emphasis on engineering and it also shows that we are ahead of the game by giving customers a chance to get these 80 percent efficient machines that meet the Energy Star 4.0 requirements early," Bowman said.
"This is also about worry-free computing," she added. "Our customers who ask for these PCs don't have to worry about if their machines will meet these requirements."
The desktops that are designed for either 80 percent efficiency or meet the new Energy Star standards will cost customers an extra $15 to $20 per machine. However, HP said that these PCs could save as much as 52 percent on a company's energy bill, which could translate into an annual savings of $6 to $65 per machine.
HP is also placing emphasis on the life cycles of these desktops. The dc7700, for example, offers a life cycle of 15 months or more, while the dc5700 and the dc5750 offer life cycles of 12 months or more.
Next Page: Desktop sales dropping.
HP is launching these updated desktop models at a time when desktop sales have slowed. In the company's latest quarterly results, which were released on Feb. 20, HP's PC business grew 17 percent but its desktop revenue fell 1 percent, while its notebook sales increased by 40 percent.
Dell, HP's main rival in the PC business, watched its desktop sales fall 18 percent, which affected the company's fiscal fourth-quarter results.
HP officials do believe there is still a market for desktops and that the new energy efficiency, life-cycle management and emphasis on including the latest processor technology will continue to make its PCs attractive to enterprises.
The dc7700 model will use Intel's Core 2 Duo processor and support Intel's latest desktop chip set, the Q965 Express chip set. The desktop will also include integrated graphics and a SATA (serial ATA) hard drive with up to 250GB of memory.
The high-end dc7700 will also continue to support Intel's vPro chip platform, which Intel has said will augment manageability and security. The desktop will also include a RAID 1 option and HP backup and recovery software.
HP said that it does not plan to include Intel's vPro in other models in its desktop line but will include mobile versions of this technology in its laptops later in 2007.
The midrange dc5700 offers Core 2 Duo processors and Intel's Q963 Express chip set, in addition to Celeron D, Pentium 4 and Pentium D chips. The desktop also offers a SATA hard drive with up to 250GB of memory.
In keeping with offering AMD processors as an additional choice for customers, the dc5750 desktop includes a configuration option for dual-core Athlon 64 X2 chips, as well as single-core Sempron 64 and Athlon 64 processors.
The dc5750 also supports the Radeon Xpress 1150 chip set and has integrated graphics. Like the dc7700, the dc5750 desktop offers a RAID 1 option. The desktop also includes a SATA hard drive with up to 250GB of memory.
The dc7700, dc5700 and the dc5750 models also offer a number of security features, including TPMs (or Trusted Platform Module 1.2) with HP's ProtectTools software, which helps secure passwords.
Finally, HP is offering the Compaq dx2200 desktop as a low-end alternative. This model includes Intel's Celeron D, Pentium 4 and Pentium D processors, an integrated ATI graphics chip and a SATA hard drive with up to 250GB of memory.
The prices on these desktops vary depending on the configurations required by users.
For example, the HP Compaq dc5700 and dc7700 desktops that meet the Energy Star 4.0 specifications and come with an Intel Core 2 Duo processor, 80GB of hard drive memory, 1GB of RAM, a DVD/CD-RW combo drive and Microsoft Windows XP Pro operating system will be priced at $899 and $959, respectively.
The Compaq dc5750 business desktop with an AMD Athlon processor, an 80GB hard drive, 512MB of RAM and a DVD/CD-RW combo drive, along with Windows XP Pro, will start at $609.
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