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HP originally pitched its 3D-scanning Sprout computer to creatives and hobbyists, but doesn’t it seem like an ideal machine for curious classrooms? The company agrees, apparently. It’s introducing the Sprout Pro, a version of the unique all-in-one for businesses and schools. It’s brawnier (you get a 6th-generation Core i7 with improved graphics), but the big deal is the addition of software that makes it far more useful from groups. You can share the view from the scanner, the webcam or your screen, in case you want to show a project to the class — you can even send 2D captures through Skype for Business. There are also tools that turn the downward-facing camera into a pro-grade document scanner and magnifier.
You will pay a premium if you’re hoping to use a Sprout Pro at school or a maker space — it’ll cost you $2,199 when the PC ships in February, or $300 above the usual price. Given that this is a shared system, though, the higher price may be easier to swallow.
And don’t worry if you’re content with traditional computers. HP is trotting out Education Edition versions of the ProBook 11 G2 and Pro 310 x360 convertible, both of which have rugged designs, improved battery life (up to 18 hours on the ProBook), upgraded wireless performance and teaching-focused software. The ProBook and Pro 310 x360 variants respectively ship in February and March for $359 and $449.