HP Offers Notebooks and Expands Total Care Services

The folks at HP have certainly been busy what with recently announcing new iPAQS and printers, but they’re still not finished. The latest news concerns notebooks aimed at the small business market, new small business training resources and additions to its Total Care services.

Small Business Advice and Resources
HP’s Small Business Connection Web site offers numerous educational resources for small businesses. The Learning Center (located within the Small Business Connection Web site but, oddly, not well-marked – click on the “Free online classes” link listed under “Business Toolbox”) now offers free online classes such as Understanding Microsoft Windows Vista Business Edition, Microsoft Word 2007: Introduction, and PC Troubleshooting.

HP has partnered with SCORE, “Counselors to America’s Small Business” on a workshop series entitled, Plan, Prepare, Recover – Keeping Your Business Safe. The workshops will be held at 10 sites around the country. The next workshop will be held in Los Angeles tomorrow.. Click the link above for registration details and other locations.

Small Business Services
Total Care for Small Businesses includes both free and fee-based services and programs. John Dayan, vice president of marketing and business development at HP, said Total Care gives small business customers personalized service throughout the lifecycle of their computer(s). HP breaks the lifecycle down into five stages: choosing, configuring, protecting, tuning and recycling it.

“[Our] intent is to give small businesses a better customer experience from the time they begin shopping for a product, all the way through setting it up, using it, supporting it and transitioning it,” Dayan said in a written statement.

Here’s a look at what’s new in Total Care:

Accidental Damage Protection w/ Computrace Professional Service Care Pack
An option on commercial notebook PCs and tablet PCs, this service covers physical damage, theft and loss.

Hardware Support with Disk Retention Service Care Pack
Many small businesses generate classified, proprietary or otherwise confidential data. If they should have a drive failure and need a replacement drive (under warranty), this service lets those customers keep the malfunctioning drive, and its data, under their control without having to pay full price for a replacement drive.

HP Compaq 6820s
HP’s HP Compaq 6820s, one of three new notebooks designed with small business in mind.

Financing Options for Small Businesses
HP’s new 1.9 percent lease rate is available until Jan. 31, 2008 on a 36-month term across transactions that range from $25,000 to $150,000 and include an HP BladeSystem or HP ProLiant server. HP also offers a promotional zero percent lease rate with a 27-month term across all products through Oct. 31, 2007.

HP’s Pay-As-You-Grow lease financing lets SMBs pay lower monthly payments for the first year and then increase payments at months 13 and 25. The financing is available through Jan. 31, 2008 on transactions starting at $150,000.

Three Notebooks for Small Biz
HP says that this laptop trio offers small businesses affordable, widescreen mobility. According to information provided by HP, the notebooks come with Intel Core 2 Duo processors, Wi-Fi, integrated Bluetooth wireless technology and an option for built-in DVD+/-RW optical drive.

HP said the notebooks include the Device Access Manager for HP ProtectTools, which is designed to prevent unauthorized people from removing or transferring data from the laptop.

Here’s the score on model, availability and pricing:

HP Compaq 6520s – Features a 14.1-inch diagonal widescreen display. Available now and its starting price, according to HP, varies by region.

HP Compaq 6720s – Features a 15.4-inch diagonal widescreen display. The notebook is available now, and the base price starts at $649.

HP Compaq 6820s – Features a 17-inch diagonal widescreen display and full-sized keyboard, an integrated numeric keypad and dedicated graphics board, which HP makes the notebook capable of supporting Vista. The notebook is available now, and the base price starts at $999.

Lauren Simonds is the managing editor of SmallBusinessComputing.com

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