Review: HP Expands AiOs To SMB, SOHO

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HP All in One

For $499 for the HP 100B All-in-One PC, here’s what you get:

• A sleek, attractive desktop with a brilliant, 20-inch LCD in compact form factor;

• A PC that, out of the box, takes literally one minute to get up and running;

• A PC that is built to support a number of attached devices;

• Terrific audio from the speakers that run the full length of the lower end of the display;

• A fairly energy-efficient desktop.

But you don’t get a Web cam, you don’t get more than 2 GB of RAM, you don’t get biometric security and you don’t get much performance.

The HP 100B All-in-One desktop PC is clearly aimed at the low end of the business space -- either for SMBs or SOHO enterprises -- in an effort to bring sleeker design and space-saving simplicity to a much broader part of the market. It’s a difficult balancing act, but one that will work for targeted solutions. It’s one that gives value-added resellers and solution providers another card in their deck that can win them smaller accounts.

The HP 100B All-in-One PC came to the CRN Test Center lab built with an AMD E-350 processor, 2 GB of RAM, an AMD Radeon graphics processor and preloaded with Windows 7 Professional. WiFi-enabled, the PC consumed 36 Watts of power while running and doing office tasks, and consumed no power at all when in “sleep” mode.

Where HP really delivers value in this device is in its design and economy of space. The black-cased 100B weighed in on our scale at 14 pounds, 15 ounces and ran 19-and-a-half inches long by 14-and-a-half inches tall by three-and-a-half inches deep. The PC comes with a DVD-RW drive, 6 USB 2.0 ports (two on the side, four in the back), an Ethernet port, and microphone and headset ports.

Using Primate Labs’ Geekbench benchmarking software, the HP 100B All-in-One ran up a score of 1600 -- one of the lowest performance scores we’ve seen in a full-blown desktop in several years.

The lack of a Webcam on the device we received took us by surprise. In a video several months ago prior to the PC’s launch, an HP executive said the 100B would ship with one, and other HP All-in-Ones have had them. It’s unclear why the webcam was dropped from the final product.

Forget about the performance and what this desktop lacks, and focus on what it does. We’ve said constantly that the biggest enemies of small or mid-sized businesses are cost and complexity. What the HP 100B All-in-One does is eliminate cost and complexity from the desktop. Additionally, it’s a desktop that would work great in customer-facing scenarios because it is simply an aesthetically nice PC.

If a performance PC solution is what’s required, you’ll look elsewhere. But for basic business and office work, this is a solution that certainly has a place in SMB and SOHO segments and one you should consider.

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