back to article If Microsoft made laptops, it'd make this: HP Spectre x360

What happens when you lock a group of product engineers from a major PC manufacturer and a team software developers from a separate company together in a room? HP's Spectre x360 does. It's the result of some serious conversations between the lads and lasses at Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft; put simply, if Microsoft made a …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    For £1,099 you can have...

    They're having a laugh, £1,099 for an HP laptop, yea right.

    1. h4rm0ny

      Re: For £1,099 you can have...

      The difference between Macs and PCs, in hardware terms, is that Apple only sells premium laptops. With PCs there are Premium and Standard and Budget variations. Compare like for like. If Apple can successfully sell laptops in the premium range, there's clearly a market. And besides, Lenovo and Dell have been charging these sorts of prices for their high-end for years so presumably are doing fine.

      Just because there are cheaper laptops out there, doesn't mean this is above market prices.

      1. ckm5

        Re: For £1,099 you can have...

        The difference between Apple laptops and all others is that, in two years, your Apple laptop will be worth 70% of what you paid for it, while anything else will be worthless.

        And that's not really a function of whether you like Apple or not, it's just market dynamics. Even if you are only running Windows, it's a better deal to buy an Apple laptop.

        If you buy anything else, you are essentially throwing your money away.....

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: For £1,099 you can have...

          "in two years, your Apple laptop will be worth 70% of what you paid for it, while anything else will be worthless."

          As a result of that, I've had some lovely bargain HP/Windows business class laptops over the last few years. Can't do that with Apple.

          Every cloud has an aluminized lining.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: For £1,099 you can have...

          >>> The difference between Apple laptops and all others is that, in two years, your Apple laptop will be worth 70% of what you paid for it, while anything else will be worthless.

          Very, very true, I'm always amazed how much old apple gear sells for. Keep it nice, and especially if you keep the box, and you'll get over 60% back on eBay after several years if you put the latest OS on it.

    2. N13L5

      Knowing more about touch screen functionality sure would help...

      The whole review is nothing but an opinion piece with few relevant stats.

      Can the touch screen be used with a stylus?

      Are there pressure sensitivity levels? how many?

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    What is it with the 16:9 screens. They're fine to watch movies on but editing documents - no. Even 1920x1200 just about world. Maybe I'm just used to a 1600x1200 Lehigh that was a joy to work on...

    1. moiety

      Re: Screens

      It's an unfashionable opinion here at the Reg; but I prefer 16:9 for the simple reason that there's less pressure on the screen hinges. I had a couple of 4:3 laptops go at the hinges; but haven't encountered that with a 16:9 yet.

    2. Paul Shirley

      Re: Screens

      I spend much of my day with side by side documents, wide is good. 3 monitors wide is better...

  3. TeeCee Gold badge

    "a full-sized HDMI socket, a Mini DisplayPort "

    I don't suppose it also has something that you might expect to find on that antique beamer you're expected to use for your off-site presentation?

    Not to mention that if you get a modern installed one in the ceiling this invariably comes with 15 pin VGA connectors scattered at handy points around the conference room. So, while it may well have other ports, getting at them means finding a very long lead and standing on the table on tiptoes to plug it in.....

    1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Re: "a full-sized HDMI socket, a Mini DisplayPort "

      Vga connectivity

      So you don't think ahead and have a Mini-DP to VGA adapter in your Laptop bag then?

      These seem to be standard kit with people who carry Macbooks for use at presentations.

  4. Khaptain Silver badge

    Half way house

    So half way between the MacBook Air and the Lenovo Thinkpad Yoga .

    "Thinkpad" has a nice sound to it, it's a leitmotif in itself.

    "HP x360" = Heavily Priced but not a Games Console.

  5. Zot

    If Microsoft?

    if Microsoft made laptops, it'd make this: The Surface.

  6. P. Lee Silver badge

    So close!

    Come on HP!

    The days of processor upgrades may be over with intel creating new "generations" every two years, but I'd like to be able to swap the disk and add memory - up to 16G (not 8G, Apple)

    And I want a matte screen.

    And it should come in at around MBA prices. If you can arrange it so that it happens to run OSX, you get brownie points, but these days, I actually prefer a Linux GUI.

    1. Tim Anderson

      Re: So close!

      The back panel does come off and you can easily upgrade the SSD.


      1. Flatpackhamster

        Re: So close!

        I don't think he was really interested in upgrading. I think he was interested in buffing his Linux credentials.

      2. Alan Sharkey

        Re: So close!


        I got the screws out, but the case seemed to be sticking and I didn't want to force it. What did you do?


    2. Sandtitz Silver badge

      Re: So close!

      "The days of processor upgrades may be over with intel creating new "generations" every two years, but I'd like to be able to swap the disk and add memory - up to 16G (not 8G, Apple). And I want a matte screen."

      Then buy a model with a matte screen and upgradeable memory! They're still produced you know. Clearly this laptop model just isn't for you.

      "And it should come in at around MBA prices."

      What? HP should jack up their prices to please you?

  7. Darai

    Needs USB Type-C

    Not buying any more laptops at our office until they have the port of the future, USB Type-C. Disappointing this doesn't have it.

    1. jason 7 Silver badge

      Re: Needs USB Type-C

      And what would you have to plug it into for the next 18 months?

      1. Darai

        Re: Needs USB Type-C

        VGA. As mentioned elsewhere in the comments you need to carry a VGA adapter anyway. Might as well be to a decent reversible multi-use port.

  8. h4rm0ny


    It seems a waste that with this technology, how good hand-writing technology has become and how great it is for sketching out notes or annotating web-pages and PDFs, pens aren't being pushed as more of a standard thing. It should be a major differentiator for Microsoft over their competitors at Apple and Google, but they don't seem to capitalize.

    That said, coming up with good stuff and then not doing much with it, is almost standard practice for Microsoft, unfortunately.

    1. John Smith 19 Gold badge

      Re: Pen?

      "That said, coming up with good stuff and then not doing much with it, is almost standard practice for Microsoft, unfortunately."

      Are you actually thinking that MS invented pen input?

      No they didn't invent it.

      They just killed the company that looked like they had the best shot at developing it.

      Then compare with

  9. Alan Sharkey

    I've got one

    I bought the top model on the HP scheme - so I didn't pay full price. I got it because the one I had before was just too large to sit on my lap for long periods.

    Windows can't really handle the high res screen - I've had to do some interesting jiggery pokery to be able to read the display but still have usable space.

    It does get a bit hot underneath when it's on your lap, but if you turn the processor down a bit (advanced power options) that makes it much cooler and I don't really notice any reduced performance. [I only do that if it's on battery]

    It worked really well when we went to Iceland - I just watched films all the way over. The battery life is good - I reckon around 7-8 hours of normal use (I've never achieved the 12.5 hours that is claimed).

    Yes, I'd like a larger and faster SSD, but overall, it works well and is a vast improvement on my previous 15.6" monster laptop.

    1. Steve Crook

      Re: I've got one

      "It worked really well when we went to Iceland - I just watched films all the way over. "

      My Iceland is within walking distance, how far away is yours?

      1. corcoran

        Re: I've got one

        Stunning LOL.

        *applause emoticon*

  10. Rufus
    Thumb Down

    Can't anyone manufacture a laptop now without inflicting it with half height cursor keys, then adding insult to injury by doubling-up their functionality as Home / End / PgUp / Down keys.

    The finger gymnastics you now have to go through just to highlight a block of code, and copy it. Made harder by having to hit a key half the size of a normal key!

    If I wanted to be cursed with an Apple styled keyboard, I'd buy an Apple!

  11. teknopaul Silver badge

    Can you run Linux on it

    USB Lan adapter, can you even install Linux on it?

    1. Sandtitz Silver badge

      Re: Can you run Linux on it @teknopaul

      "USB Lan adapter, can you even install Linux on it?"

      It's unlikely that you can install Linux on the LAN adapter. ;-) However, It is likely that the LAN adapter itself is supported under Linux. There are plenty of LAN adapters on the market, you wouldn't have to buy an HP one...

  12. Francis Fish

    I've had 2 HP machines overheat and fry the motherboard just after the guarantee ran out - I won't buy another.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "I've had 2 HP machines overheat and fry the motherboard just after the guarantee ran out"

      Just buy another years extended warranty if it goes wrong. I have done that with Dells several times whenever they break after going out of warranty...

  13. Big_Ted
    Paris Hilton

    What is it ?

    with these foldable laptops....

    If I want to use a laptop as a tablet at times I want a detachable screen to half the weight.

    Add to that the chance of scratching or damaging your keboard....

    Yeh maybe I might use tent mode but not likely as the screen is in that position anyway with the keyboard attached.

    Nope cant see the use at all. If I was spending this much on something laptoppy/tablety I would go for a Surface Pro instead.

    1. Archaon
      Paris Hilton

      Re: What is it ?

      Except that it won't halve the weight. A keyboard in an otherwise empty shell doesn't weigh all that much. All the heavy stuff that you want to get rid of will be...wait for it...stuck behind the screen. Which you're still carrying. And therefore weighs nearly the same as one with a keyboard attached.

      Thickness and looks (I always think laptops look a bit stupid folded back on themselves), yes I agree. Weight, no.

      Very much doubt many people will use this as a tablet, but could see tent mode being perfectly usable.

  14. dogged


    Hey Al, an interview I read around release time claimed that MS involvement had basically enforced a "no shitware" rule on HP. If true, that must be quite an achievement given the usual 20GB worth of nagging crap that they like to excrete onto your hard-drive.

    Is it true?

    1. h4rm0ny

      Re: Shitware

      First laptop manufacturer to ship their laptops with a clean install of Windows and none of their proprietary software or that of people who are friends with the CEO, gets my business.

    2. Alan Sharkey

      Re: Shitware

      It came with a couple of HP (metro) apps and that's about it. So, yes, fairly clean. It did come with Norton AV (I think) but I got rid of that (unlike phones, you can delete the bloatware).

      It has three (3) USB ports - all USB3, full size HDMI (which works nicely to my projector with an HDMI to VGA converter and an SD slot.

      As the report states, the wifi is superb. It picks up signals that my old one didn't like.

      There is a restore partition on the SSD, but as soon as I go to Windows 10, I'll get rid of that.


      1. dogged

        Re: Shitware

        ew, Norton.

    3. Al Taylor

      Re: Shitware

      It has McAfee and Skype and the usual HP programmes (HP Connected Music, HP Connected Photo

      HP Games by WildTangent, HP SimplePass, HP Connected Drive) all pre-installed so it's no more a virgin Windows install and any other HP laptop I've encountered.

  15. tempemeaty


    I like this!

    This is EVERYTHING I want in a modern portable. It even has "TWO!" USB ports. I can use my, two USB connector, external dvd burner/player with this! Apples' one USB port offerings ended my hopes of going with their latest thing. This gives me hope that there is life after Apple. The only thing that's kept me in Apple land was their OS but lately they've burned their bridges to their customers in that department too.

    Damn, I want to get this and see how it goes with one of my favorite versions of GNU Linux...

  16. M7S

    Is the name a marketing opportunity based on a recent trailer?

    "Ah come in. I've been expecting you".

    Oh come on, not every thing I plonk on top of my lap has to be a white pussy.

  17. s5PGmU

    MacBook Air-esque styling?

    Did you see those rounded corners? Watch out for Apple's lawyers!

  18. Robert Sneddon

    Maximum video output

    Will the mini-DP connector drive an external 4k monitor (3840x2160) at 60Hz? Can it drive multiple monitors with pass-through?

  19. Christian Berger Silver badge

    No ethernet???!!!

    Seriously! Why? Just make the thing a bit thicker by adding a bigger battery and you have space for Ethernet and VGA... which will turn it from an expensive toy to an actual tool you can do actual work with.

    1. jzl

      Re: No ethernet???!!!

      Other laptops are available. Maybe you'll find one that has these features.

  20. enormous c word

    Shiny Screens v Matt Screens

    Seriously, why do the manufacturers still insist on only supplying shiny screens (I know they look good in the low-light conditions of the PC showroom) but seriously - everyone knows they're shite. I can kind of understand why the manufacturers dabbled with shiny screens to start with - but why keep doing it?

    Lenovo / HP / Dell / Apple - listen to me - if it has a shiny screen, I won't but it because it is unusable in the real world.

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