Many educators have to use both Windows and Mac platforms. Sometimes they have Windows laptops at school and a Macbook at home. They sometimes have iPads in the classroom and sometimes have Chromebooks. I have recently found out that it is possible to use both major platforms and keep your life in balance!
I received an HP EliteBook Folio 1020 Ultrabook laptop to review. I had just sold my 11" Macbook Air and did not have a personal laptop to use, so the EliteBook came at the right time!
My desktop is an iMac and I use and iPad and iPhone, so I decided to see if I could still keep up-to-date and work on my items in the Apple ecosystem using the HP EliteBook Folio 1020 Ultrabook.
|The HP EliteBook Folio 1020 Ultrabook|
The HP EliteBook Folio 1020 Ultrabook is a very well-crafted, thin, light laptop with tons of up-to-date features! With the SSD drive, it turns on and shuts down quickly, opens installed programs quickly, and completes intensive tasks, like rendering, just great!
The machine I received has these specs:
- Windows 8.1 Pro
- Intel Core M processor: 1.2 GHz up to 2.9GHz with Intel Turbo Boost
- Integrated Intel HD graphics 5300
- 12.5" diagonal LED-backlit touch screen (2560x1440)
- Backlit keyboard
- 8 GB RAM
- 512GB SATA SSD
- Intel® Dual Band Wireless-AC 7265 802.11a/b/g/n/ac
- 2 USB 3.0 ports
- HDMI port
- MicroSD card slot
- Glass Forcepad touchpad
- Headphone/mic jack
- Webcam 720 HD
- Fingerprint sensor
- Backlit keyboard
- Docking connector
- Size: 12.2" x 8.26" x .6"
- Weight: 2.66 lbs.
The full datasheet with all the options may be found here.
There were some features that were new to me. I love the built-in fingerprint scanner to log-in to the machine, the touchscreen for using Windows 8.1 in the way it was meant to be used, and the glass Forcepad touchpad. It took a little getting used to a "no click" touchpad, but, once I did, it really makes things faster and easier! The EliteBook Folio 1020 also has a quiet, backlit keyboard with just the right amount of travel to let you know you have hit a key. The speaker is top-loaded over the keyboard and, for conferencing, there are HP tools built-in that can minimize the background noise if you do not have a headset.
I used the machine exclusively for a week, and, as I stated before, I wanted to see if I could keep up with the products I currently use on the iMac, iPhone, and iPad Air by using the HP EliteBook Folio 1020 Ultrabook.
In schools, it is becoming less and less important to think about the hardware. The emphasis is on "Can I get done what I need to get done?" With many schools still running Windows enterprise networks, Windows-based machines are still very prevalent in the educational settings. But, with both major players (Microsoft and Apple) realizing that it is important to allow users "choice", I am able to use this cool new laptop and get my work done easily!
- I installed Firefox, Chrome, and Safari for Windows so I had access to all my browsers, plug-ins, and extensions.
- I have Office 365 for the Mac and was able to install the Windows version on the HP EliteBook Folio 1020 Ultrabook, so I have access to the Windows suite of tools (and love the fact I have Publisher back on the Windows side!)
- My favorite organization and curation tool is OneNote and I use it on all of my Mac and iOS devices. Of course, it is a Microsoft program so it was easy to sync it to my notebooks.
- I opened Outlook to begin the process of setting up my email, and imagine my surprise when it took me through the icloud.com set-up effortlessly! It brought over my folders and sub-folders and I was in business!
- I am using iCloud.com and the iWork Beta to work on my Pages, Keynote, and Numbers documents on the HP EliteBook Folio 1020 Ultrabook . As you can see from the images below, I can even present basic Keynote documents via the cloud. (Embedded videos don't seem to work, so I will just put them online and link to them within the slideshow itself.)
- I installed iTunes for Windows for my Apple music library
- I purchased Reflector for Windows for mirroring my iPad to the
HP EliteBook Folio 1020 Ultrabook for presenting my iPad workshops.
- I am a Creative Cloud user, so was able to download my Adobe apps to the EliteBook Folio 1020 and use them.
|HP EliteBook Folio 1020 worked with my external DVD drive|
|Logged into iCloud with the HP EliteBook Folio 1020|
|Working on my Keynote presentation via iWork Beta|
|Full-screen presenting with iWork Beta and VGA adapter|
Many of the other tools that I use are Web-based, such as the ones listed on this page. Online tools are often used in the education sector because, if the school does not have a 1-to-1 initiative, or teachers and students cannot bring devices home, with online tools they still have access to the tools they need.
I am convinced educators can stop talking about being a Windows or Mac "shop" now. With new feature-rich laptops like the HP EliteBook Folio 1020 Ultrabook or the new 12" MacBook, and with the software and tools accessible from either platform, I think school districts now can make a choice based on their needs, rather than the hardware dictating what can and cannot be done!