Another Maximum PC exclusive! We got first hands-on with HP's new Elitebook 2730p notebook, which features a swiveling 12.1-inch screen (1280x800 native resolution) that turns it into a tablet PC. Additional features on this rugged business notebook: 2MP webcam, 95% full-size QWERTY keyboard with HP dura key coating (spill and smudge-resistant, expresscard slot, and HP's business card OCR reader software. In addition to a newly improved slot for the tablet pen (it won't accidentally fall out anymore), the notebook also brings back the highly requested jog dial.
In the metal guts of the 2730p is an Intel Core 2 Duo low-voltage processor (running on the GS45 Centrino 2 chipset), up to 8GB of DDR2 RAM in dual-channel slots, 80GB SSD drive, and your typical slew of connectivity ports.
We were most impressed by the very comfortable near-full sized keyboard (95% the size of a standard keyboard), and the sub-4 pound weight. Like the other business laptops in the new Elitebook line, the full-magnesium alloy-chassis of the 2730p is also spec'ed to meet military requirements to ruggedness and durability -- so it's suitable for clumsy hands.
A few things we wish this laptop had: a higher resolution screen and backlit keys. The HP "Night Light" next to the webcam just isn't the same.
No word on pricing just yet, but expect the 2730p to pop on HP's website soon.