HP’s $5,000 Spectre Foldable PC has a lot to prove

by owner

HP is the latest company to announce a foldable-screen PC. The 17-inch Spectre Foldable PC has a keyboard that can be used wirelessly with the device propped up on its kickstand. Or you could magnetically attach the keyboard to the screen’s bottom half or even slide the keyboard toward you for a 1.5-screen-like experience. The OLED device addresses concerns around battery life and portability by including two battery packs instead of one. But the bendy, Intel 12th-gen computer will have to do quite a lot to even begin rationalizing its staggering $5,000 price.

The Spectre Fold works as a 17-inch, 0.33-inch (8.5 mm) thick OLED tablet. Uniquely, it has an integrated kickstand for propping the PC up at a 120° angle. This is key because HP cites the kickstand as one of the reasons the computer is so costly, but this also means you don’t have to deal with separate origami stands/sleeves. With the PC propped up, it should be easy to work with the included wireless keyboard or stylus, which both charge wirelessly on the device.

The Bluetooth keyboard can attach to the bottom half of the PC’s screen for a 12.3-inch laptop view. If you slide the keyboard down toward you, revealing more of the OLED, the PC will automatically display windows north of the keyboard. This scenario is like working on a 14-inch laptop.

HP says it worked with Microsoft to customize Windows 11’s Snap feature so it’s easy to bring a window or two to the space above the docked keyboard. Lenovo’s Yoga Book 9i, a clamshell laptop with a second OLED screen where you’d expect the keyboard and touchpad to be, also lets you place windows on top of a docked keyboard. But when I tested that laptop, I typically found looking down physically uncomfortable.

As far as the OLED display goes, you’re looking at a 1920×2560 resolution with a 99.5 percent DCI-P3 color claim, 400 nits (SDR) and 500 nits (HDR) max brightness claims, and IMAX Enhanced certification. In a press briefing, Stacy Wolff, SVP of Personal Systems Design & Sustainability at HP, also noted that the computer uses a new panel redesigned for foldability and narrow borders.

Foldable future

HP has been rumored to be working on a foldable PC since at least last year, and with other PC brands seeing how they can apply OLED in unique form factors, HP was expected to do something similar with foldables.

What wasn’t expected was the $5,000 price. Here’s how the Spectre Fold compares to some other distinct OLED laptops.

HP Spectre Fold Asus Zenbook 17 Fold OLED Lenovo Yoga Book 9i Lenovo 16-inch ThinkPad X1 Fold (not yet released)
CPU i7-1250U i7-1250U i7-1355U Up to 12th Gen i7 with vPro
Graphics Intel Iris Xe Intel Iris Xe Intel Iris Xe Intel Iris Xe
Display 17-inch 1920×2560 foldable OLED touchscreen 17.3-inch 2560×1920 foldable OLED touchscreen 2x 13.3-inch 2880×1800 OLED touchscreen 16.3-inch 2560×2024 foldable OLED touchscreen
RAM 16GB LPDDR5x-5200 16GB LPDDR5-5200 16GB LPDDR5x-6400 Up to 32GB LPDDR5
Storage 1TB 1TB 512GB Up to 1TB
Dimensions when folded 10.91×7.53×0.84 inches (277.05× 191.31×21.4mm) 11.32×7.45×01.35 inches
11.78×8.03×0.63 inches (299.1×203.9×15.95 mm) 10.87×6.9×0.68 inches
( 276.2×176.2×17.4mm
Weight (device only)  2.98 pounds (1.35kg) 3.31 pounds (1.50kg)  2.95 pounds (1.34kg) 2.82 pounds (1.28kg)
Price (as of writing) $5,000 Debuted at $3,500, discontinued $2,000 TBD, likely over $2,000

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