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With the X1 Carbon due to land early in 2014, we're (just a little bit) eager to put it to the test. Keep your eyes peeled for PC Pro's definitive in-depth review.Choosing inkjet for your next office printer isn’t just good for your business and its bottom line; it’s also good for the environment. HP’s latest office inkjet printers use less energy and create less waste than equivalent laser printers, and with HP’s commitment to environment-friendly manufacturing and recycling, you can be assured that your organisation is doing its best for the planet.Of course, office laser printers have been growing more energy-efficient for years, and HP has led the way with reductions in operating and standby power consumption, more efficient power-save modes and more effective tools for managing power use across a fleet of printers. All the same, there are parts of the laser printing process that involve significant quantities of energy, most notably the fuser which fuses the particles of toner onto the sheet of paper during printing. This needs to heat up rapidly before the first page can be printed and then be kept hot during printing, usually at temperatures in excess of 200°C.

Many HP Laser printers now use low-melt toners and/or Instant-on technology to reduce the energy the fuser uses, but Inkjet printers are unquestionably more energy-efficient. An HP Officejet Pro X inkjet printer uses up to 50 per cent less energy than an equivalent laser printer, partly because its PageWide inkjet head requires no fuser. Tested against leading office printers from Samsung and Brother, an HP Officejet Pro X476dw used as little as 66.6 per cent of the power, while an Officejet Pro X576dw used between 69.1 per cent and 88.8 per cent. Extend this over a week, and the HP printers will use less than half the energy of their laser printer rivals; an average 70W while operating, 10W in standby and 4.8W in sleep mode. A typical laser printer may use as much as 380W working and 70W in standby without going to sleep, where consumption might still be 7W.

OfficeJet Pro X printers also come with a robust set of power-management options, which can be configured using the printer control panel, the HP Embedded Web Server interface or the HP Web Jetadmin UI. Just like HP’s laser printers you can set how long your printer has to wait without work before going to sleep, and also set scheduled on and off times. It all adds up to a dramatic reduction in energy consumption, which is as good for the company bank balance as it is for the environment.Another way HP’s new inkjets can help you reduce your business’s carbon footprint is through consolidation. With speeds of up to 70ppm and monthly workloads up to 4,200 pages, a single Officejet Pro X printer could easily do the work of two or more old laser printers and use up a fraction of their energy. Use duplex printing – as standard with every Officejet Pro X – and you can cut down on paper usage too.

All printers produce some waste, whether it’s the toner and imaging drums in a laser printer or the ink cartridges and printheads in an inkjet. Many of us assume that an inkjet wastes more, simply because we’re used to laser toner cartridges that last for several thousand pages and inkjet cartridges that drop out after a few hundred prints or so. When it comes to the Officejet Pro and Officejet Pro X lines, however, you might be in for a surprise. The new XL cartridges used in the Officejet Pro X range, for instance, can print 6,600 pages in the case of each colour cartridge and 9,200 for the black. That’s comparable to many office laser printers. Throw in Draft and General Office modes that use less ink, separate colour cartridges that can be replaced individually and a printhead and maintenance cartridge that lasts the lifespan of the printer, and Officejet Pro X printers minimise the amount of waste produced. You can even set where the low ink warning kicks in, and ensure that pages being printed while a cartridge runs out will still finish printing. This all stacks up well against comparable laser printers. Combine the spent ink or toner cartridges and the packaging used to print 15,000 pages at 40 per cent coverage, and the Officehet Pro X476sw produces only 50 per cent of the waste produced by some laser models.With HP, of course, waste doesn’t have to mean landfill. With its Planet Partners program HP has led the way when it comes to recycling, with a product return program both for hardware and supplies. In the UK HP recycles HP inkjet and Laserjet cartridges for free, not to mention used printers, laptops, PCs and multi-function devices. You can easily order collection boxes with free pick-up online, or return supplies or hardware to a designated collection point. HP then manages the whole recycling chain, overseeing transport to an authorised sorting and waste facility, where cartridges, printers or computers can be broken down into the raw materials, which will then be used to make new cartridges or other metal and plastic products.

Since 1986 HP has recovered over 1 billion kg of products for reuse and recycling, and produced over 1.5 billion HP Laserjet and inkjet cartridges containing recycled materials. Many of HP’s inkjet cartridges contain over 50 per cent recycled plastics by weight. HP also works hard to ensure that its products are free of hazardous substances, and that the packaging materials are recyclable.HP is widely recognised for its environmental efforts, ranking highest among electronics companies and fifth overall in Interbrand’s 2011 list of the 50 best global green brands, and coming second in Newsweek’s list of the 500 greenest US companies. HP has had ISO 14001 certification – the international standard for environmental management systems – since June 2000. Choosing an inkjet as an office printer can help any business go greener, reducing energy costs and environmental impact. Choosing HP inkjets takes that up to the next level, making it a smart choice for any responsible business.

Fujitsu has lifted the lid on a huge range of new devices running Windows 8.1 - including a couple of waterproof hybrids and tablets.There's a raft of new hybrids, tablets and laptops targeted at consumers and business users. All of Fujitsu's new models will come pre-installed with Windows 8.1 and will arrive in time for Christmas, though Fujitsu hasn’t said when they might hit the UK or what they might cost.Fujitsu’s rounded out its Arrows Tab lineup with new tablets and hybrids that can keep working through downpours. On the consumer side, there’s the Arrows Tab QH77/M – a convertible, 12.5in Ultrabook running Intel’s Haswell processor. The hybrid PC can be used in three modes – as a tablet, as a laptop, or as a desktop PC if attached to a separate dock. The PC’s water-resistant when in tablet mode, and the fan keeps working when submerged. Its enterprise equivalent, the Arrows Tab Q704/H, offers added features, such as fingerprint authentication.There’s also the Arrows Tab QH55/M, a pure-play tablet with a 10in screen at a resolution of 2,560 x 1,600, or 229 PPI. According to Fujitsu, both devices can still function if sprayed with water continuously for three minutes – making it safe against heavy showers – or if you drop it into 1m of water for half an hour. The company hasn’t detailed any other specs, such as storage or processor, but said the tablet can last up to 15.5 hours. Again, there’s an enterprise version for business users, the Arrows Tab Q584/H.

Fujitsu’s also bulked out its range of Lifebook laptops with the 14in U904 Ultrabook and the 13.3in s904, both targeted at businesses.The 14in model is furnished with Intel Haswell and a 500GB hybrid HDD, plus a 3,200 x 1,800, touchscreen display. At 15.5mm thick, Fujitsu is touting the device as the thinnest laptop available on the market. It comes with up to 8GB of RAM plus either a 500GB HDD with 16GB of solid-state cache, or up to 512GB of SSD storage. It boasts a couple of USB 3 ports, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and optional 3G or 4G connectivity. It’s also available with Windows 8.1, Windows 8.1 Pro or Windows 7 Pro.The 13.3in Lifebook offers a 2,560 × 1,440 screen resolution, also runs Intel Haswell and features a second battery slot. Fujitsu claims the device lasts up to 21 hours on a high-capacity battery, or up to 28 hours with the extra power. There’s also a fingerprint sensor.

Windows XP has been a mainstay of business computing since just after the turn of the century, but its fantastic run is coming to an end. In April, Microsoft will stop supporting the 13-year-old operating system, meaning it won’t receive updates for even critical security issues.If that isn’t reason enough to prompt businesses to flush Windows XP out of their networks, companies still running the ageing operating system are missing out on some of the latest desktop and server technologies, which could offset – or even cancel out - the costs of migration. The security risks of running an unpatched operating system are considerable. In December 2013 alone, Microsoft patched three “critical” flaws in Windows XP and another two that were labelled as “important”. All three of those critical flaws allowed attackers to remotely run malicious code on infected machines, potentially compromising the data stored on those PCs and other machines on the network.Such flaws will remain unpatched after April, when Microsoft finally ends support for all variants of Windows XP. The company will, of course, continue to issue security updates for more modern operating systems, but security experts are concerned that this practice will give malware writers valuable hints to flaws that lie within Windows XP.

“In all likelihood, some of the vulnerabilities that Microsoft fixes in more modern versions of Windows will also be present in XP, but XP users won’t be getting the benefit of having a fix available,” says independent computer security analyst, Graham Cluley. “It is very likely that online criminals will attempt to exploit unpatched vulnerabilities on the XP platform. Typically the most attractive vulnerabilities will be remote code execution vulnerabilities which can be used by malware such as a Trojan horse or worm to infect your computer.”Consequently, Cluley believes that any company “continuing to run Windows XP after April is, in my opinion, playing a dangerous game of Russian Roulette”. “While a sizeable number of computers continue to use XP, online criminals will find it profitable to target the platform,” he adds. At the time of writing, almost a third of the world’s PCs continue to run Windows XP according to Net Applications, making it a large, attractive target for malicious coders.Aside from the potential costs and inconvenience of malware infecting Windows XP systems, businesses also have a legal responsibility to adequately protect customer data. Financial institutions, for example, may face heavy fines for failing to safeguard data. In the US, public companies are already beginning to face class-action lawsuits from shareholders for failing to migrate their systems from Windows XP.


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