HP Folio 13 review

Price when reviewed

After the glass splendour of its Envy Spectre 14, HP’s latest Ultrabook is a much more understated affair. The Folio 13 drops the screen size down to 13.3in, does away with the stylish sheets of Gorilla Glass, and slashes the price to a seriously tempting £799.

HP has got the look and feel of the Folio 13 just right. The brushed aluminium lid contrasts with the smooth, yet solid-feeling plastics moulded to the underside, and the chassis’ rounded, tapered edges make for a deliciously designed laptop. In fact, every inch of the Folio 13 exudes luxury – the build quality is excellent, without a hint of flex, and the combination of soft-touch plastics and cold metal feels gorgeous.

That pristine exterior hides a solid mid-range specification. The 1.6GHz Core i5-2467M processor is a familiar sight, as is the 4GB of DDR3 RAM, but we’re glad to see HP hasn’t scrimped on the solid-state storage – the Folio packs in a 128GB Samsung SSD. It perhaps isn’t the fastest SSD we’ve seen in an Ultrabook – sequential read and write speeds peaked at a modest 208MB/sec and 190MB/sec, about half that of the best we’ve seen – but it’s clearly fast enough, as proven by the Folio 13 racking up a solid 0.56 in our Real World Benchmarks.

HP Folio 13 - front

That performance doesn’t come at the expense of stamina, either. Our light-use battery test saw the Folio 13 last for a perfectly good 8hrs 12mins. Of the Ultrabook competition, only the Asus Zenbook UX31E can better that by a significant margin, with its time of 8hrs 53mins.

HP hasn’t skimped on the essentials. A single USB 3 port sits next to a full-sized HDMI output, a Gigabit Ethernet socket and an SD card reader, while another USB 2 port and a combined headphone/microphone socket are pushed to the right-hand edge. The presence of only single-band Wi-Fi is disappointing, but you do at least get Bluetooth 3. And unlike most of the more affordable Ultrabooks, HP has fitted a backlit keyboard – a genuinely useful addition.

It all makes for a laptop that’s a pleasure to use. The keyboard’s Scrabble-tile keys depress with a soft, cushioned stroke, and the large right-shift key and spacious layout make for fast, accurate touch-typing. The rubberised finish of the keys is worth a mention, too – in addition to feeling lovely under the finger, it also provides some welcome grip.


Warranty1yr collect and return

Physical specifications

Dimensions319 x 220 x 18mm (WDH)
Travelling weight1.9kg

Processor and memory

ProcessorIntel Core i5-2467M
Motherboard chipsetIntel HM65
RAM capacity4.00GB
Memory typeDDR3
SODIMM sockets free0
SODIMM sockets total0

Screen and video

Screen size13.3in
Resolution screen horizontal1,366
Resolution screen vertical768
Resolution1366 x 768
Graphics chipsetIntel HD Graphics 3000
Graphics card RAMN/A
VGA (D-SUB) outputs0
HDMI outputs1
S-Video outputs0
DVI-I outputs0
DVI-D outputs0
DisplayPort outputs0


Spindle speedN/A
Hard diskSamsung SSD
Optical disc technologyN/A
Optical driveN/A
Replacement battery price inc VAT£0


Wired adapter speed1,000Mbits/sec
802.11a supportyes
802.11b supportyes
802.11g supportyes
802.11 draft-n supportyes
Integrated 3G adapterno
Bluetooth supportyes

Other Features

Wireless hardware on/off switchno
Wireless key-combination switchyes
ExpressCard34 slots0
ExpressCard54 slots0
PC Card slots0
USB ports (downstream)1
FireWire ports0
PS/2 mouse portno
9-pin serial ports0
Parallel ports0
Optical S/PDIF audio output ports0
Electrical S/PDIF audio ports0
3.5mm audio jacks0
SD card readeryes
Memory Stick readerno
MMC (multimedia card) readerno
Smart Media readerno
Compact Flash readerno
xD-card readerno
Pointing device typeTouchpad
Audio chipsetRealtek HD Audio
Speaker locationAbove keyboard
Hardware volume control?no
Integrated microphone?yes
Integrated webcam?yes
Camera megapixel rating1.3mp
Fingerprint readerno
Smartcard readerno
Carry caseno

Battery and performance tests

Battery life, light use8hr 12min
Overall Real World Benchmark score0.56
Responsiveness score0.79
Media score0.55
Multitasking score0.34

Operating system and software

Operating systemWindows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
OS familyWindows 7
Recovery methodRecovery partition

Disclaimer: Some pages on this site may include an affiliate link. This does not effect our editorial in any way.

Todays Highlights
How to See Google Search History
how to download photos from google photos