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Laptops

HP EliteBook 2740p and 2540p and ProBook range: Rugged good looks

HP has announced a host of computing machines -- the ruggedised EliteBook 2740p multi-touch tablet and 2540p laptop, and a bunch of new ProBooks

A wise man once taught us the value of a life devoted to business, and today we bring important news to devoted business-folk -- HP has announced a plethora of serious-looking new brushed-metal laptops and a rugged convertible tablet PC.

The HP EliteBook 2740p (pictured above) is a super-thin multi-touch convertible tablet that should come in very handy for people who like tapping on things in the crook of their arm. We're thinking doctors with sexy glasses, burly moustachioed foremen and futuristic secretaries.

Also available is the Ultra-Slim Expansion Base -- that's a fancy term for 'dock' -- which will feature all manner of drives, sockets and outputs, hopefully making it easier to use the tablet without constant plugging and unplugging of computing accoutrements.

The EliteBook 2540p (pictured below) is a more conventional thin-and-light laptop, but it's the lightest ever in HP's EliteBook range, weighing in at a dainty 1.5kg and boasting a 12.1-inch LED display. Both machines are apparently engineered to meet military-standard tests for vibration, dust, humidity, altitude and both high and low temperatures, so no matter where you are, you'll be ready to fill in that spreadsheet no one really needs.

HP EliteBook 2540p

The HP 4320, 4420, 4520 and 4720 models are new additions to HP's ProBook series, and are a decidedly workmanlike range of laptops that come in 13.3-, 14-, 15.6- and 17.3-inch flavours, all of which are hi-def LED-backlit affairs and can be kitted out with an optional ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4350 graphics chip for multimedia computing.

These laptops will also feature HP's Day Starter software, which lets you view some basic calendar info for the day while Windows boots up. Bear in mind that this almost certainly won't sync with your Google Calendar info or anything cloud-based, since before Windows has booted up it has no means of accessing this information.

The EliteBook 2740p and 2540p will be available in the UK in March, but no pricing information has been confirmed yet. Stay tuned for a hands-on.