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HP beefs up Windows 8 gear with stylish laptops and business PCs

Hewlett-Packard adds ultraportables, stylish notebooks, and two desktop PC to its Windows 8 lineup. The new gear, announced Wednesday, adds to HP's growing family of Windows 8 hardware first announced in August that included a tablet-laptop hybrid device.

HP is tight lipped when it comes to specifics on its new gear, so we'll be covering the basics for what the company has said about the new PCs announce this week.

[RELATED: HP honcho Bradley: Post-PC world claim "just wrong" ]

HP will refresh its Pavilion Sleekbook notebook line with a new Sleekbook 14 and 15 models that feature a 14-inch and 15.6-inch display respectively, Webcam, and ports for HDMI, USB 3.0 and 2.0. You can also choose up to one terabyte of storage, and an optional Nvidia discrete graphics card. The Sleekbook 14 lineup will feature AMD accelerated processors and the 15.6-inch version will have Ivy Bridge-based Intel Core processors. Specifics such as screen resolution, RAM, and specific processor options have not been announced. Sleekbook 14 pricing starts at $500 and Sleekbook 15 pricing starts at $600, both lines are expected to start shipping on October 26, the same day that Windows 8 launches. The notebooks come in either black or red.

For gamers there is the HP Envy Phoenix h9 desktop computer featuring an "armor-plated design," three tool-less hard disk bays, Intel Core Ivy Bridge processors, and liquid cooling systems. This appears to be the first Phoenix desktop from HP using the Envy moniker, previous Phoenix desktops have rolled out as Pavilion HPE PCs. Pricing for the Envy Phoenix h9 starts at $900 and the computer is expected to be available on October 26.

Another upcoming desktop is the HP Compaq Pro 6305 featuring A10, A8, A6, or A4 AMD Accelerated Processing Units (APUs), meant to improve performance for graphics processing. The 6350 will start at $539 and starts shipping pre-loaded with Windows 7 on October 8, so don't forget to grab your $15 Windows 8 upgrade if you buy this PC.

HP also announced the upcoming Envy m4 notebook (see image at the top of the story) featuring a 14-inch display, Ivy Bridge Intel Core processor, Webcam, and Intel Wireless Display (WiDi) to wirelessly stream content to an HDTV (adapter or built-in functionality required). The Envy m4 will start at $900 and is also expected to roll out October 26.

Beyond announcing some basic features for upcoming Windows 8 laptops, HP also said it will start offering U.S. customers up to 200MB of free data per month for two years when you purchase an HP Pavilion dm1 notebook. The data connection will be courtesy of T-Mobile's HSPA+ network. HP will start offering the deal to new dm1 owners on October 26.

HP's announcement follows a similar Windows 8 line-up reveal from Dell on Wednesday.


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