Generation 5 of the HP ZBook series of mobile workstations have a heavy emphasis on collaboration. Today, HP introduced eight new ZBooks some featuring keys for answering calls, hanging up or taking over a presentation.

The new line up consists of the ZBook 14u, 15u, x12, ZBook Studio, ZBook Studio x360, 15v, 15 and 17 models. According to Carol Hess, HP’s vice president of worldwide product management & GTM workstations, people are no longer working in a silo and collaboration has become an important factor in the device they use as 91 per cent of today’s workers say that technology has to help them with collaboration to make meetings more meaningful.

Part of the strategy behind the 5th generation ZBook line had HP investigate where people were working, how they were working and where they are working.

“Work is no longer a place you go but a thing you do. This is an expanded view of where they work and issues such as security become more important and we wanted to focus on engineering a solution with security. They are not doing office hours anymore. There is no more 9 to 5,” Hess said.

HP found out that 62 per cent of today’s workforce work from more than one location, while a whopping 81 per cent of people do work functions during personal time.

And, 65 per cent of workers collaborate at least once a day. Hess added that 58 per cent employees do personal activities during work hours.

Hess said that ZBook’s collaboration functions augment Skype calls enabling users to hit the present key and automatically start presenting.

The Z book mobile workstations also come with noise cancelling world-facing microphone.

This microphone is on the back bezel of the ZBook and when in individual mode the mic turns off, so no one can hear your dog barking in the background. When in conference mode the mic will pick up all the voices in the meeting. The ZBook line also feature speakers from Bang & Olufsen.

Data security and device identity has also been a focus for HP on this new line of Z Books. HP has brought in new security measures such as SureStart with self-healing BIOS from malware and rootkits.

Other security features include:

  • SureView for protection from visual hacking;
  • A privacy camera that physically blocks the lens of your webcam to protect against malicious surveillance; and
  • Multi-factor authentication for secure logins.
HP ZBook Studio line

Xavier Garcia, HP’s global head of workstations, said another area of focus is the creative and engineering professionals’ marketplace. HP has put forth two models for this in the Studio and Studio x360. The x360, for example, has a 360-degree convertible hinge that can be used in any presentation mode. There is professional inking capability on a 4K display using HP DreamColor technology.

“What we have done today helps creators, scientists, designers and many other professionals to be more creative, more productive and more competitive in what they do every single day. This innovation is based on customer insights and everything you have seen in all details is meant to improve the overall customer experience,” Garcia said.

On the high end of the line – the 15 and 17 ZBook models come with MIL – STD 810G grade and are ready for virtual reality and even machine learning.

HP ZBook 17

Pricing for the 15 and 17 model ZBooks are still to be determined, but HP has released the entry-level price for the ZBook line at US$949 with one year and three-year warranties.