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[Review] HP 15-dy1731ms: It's "OK" but you can do Better

Pros
  • Touchscreen display
  • 10th generation Core i3 CPU
  • 8 GB of RAM (upgradeable)
  • SSD storage
Cons
  • The display is not Full HD
  • Battery life around 6 hours

While convertibles are fairly common within the laptop space, touchscreen laptops that are just that, not convertible devices, are few and far between. 

Introducing the HP 15-dy1731ms. HP's latest touchscreen laptop that aims to fit withing the mid-range, the category in which most laptop users fall into (who are we kidding here?).

In that regard it has a good enough CPU, an interesting amount of RAM to allow for serious multitasking, and an SSD unit to guarantee a speedy performance on day-to-day tasks. But is it really worth your money? And, does it deserve the bad press some users have been giving it lately? Today we set out to answer these questions in this review of the HP 15-dy1731ms.

Index
  1. Let's talk design and keyboard
  2. What's the performance like?
  3. Graphics & Battery life
  4. Connectivity options
  5. Verdict: To Buy or not to Buy?;


Design and display

The design is pretty standard, there's not that much to say in that regard. As you'd expect on a laptop of its price, the quality build is far from premium but it's far better then what we get with most entry-level laptops. Translation: yes, it feels like plastic, the kind you'd find in just about any laptop within its price point.

The display, one of this laptop's finer features, offers us a standard 15.6-inch diagonal and an HD resolution of 1366 by 768 pixels with good colors and decent contrast. It's your standard WLED screen with a 10-finger multi-touch support. This basically means that the laptop will register up to 10 different touches simultaneously and is pretty standard.

As far as the keyboard is concerned, it offers up a proper travel distance, it's not backlit and, as is customary in 15.6-inch laptops, features a dedicated numeric pad on the right-hand side. 

There are no extra features such as a fingerprint sensor or a tilted angle to improve ergonomics, as you can find on the more affordable Asus 15 F512JA-AS34 we've recently reviewed and that features the same CPU, RAM, and storage capacity.

Other than that it's a pretty portable device, all things considered, weighing in at 4.4 pounds. However, if it's portability what you're after then we would really encourage you to aim for a 13 or 14-inch model instead.

What's the deal with performance? What can I expect?


A quick rundown over the major components of the HP 15-dy1731ms in review and you can see that we're looking at a laptop that features a 10th generation, dual-core, Intel Core i3 processor that clocks in at a modest yet efficient 1.2 GHz and can go as far as 3.4 GHz when we need it to go the extra mile. 

Other than that there's also 8 GB of RAM (DDR4, of course), that we may upgrade (up to 16 GB) for the more intensive multitaskers amongst us, as well as 128 GB of SSD storage capacity.

For those of you who come from a laptop that uses a hard drive, you should know that moving onto a laptop with an SSD is night and day.  Essentially, an SSD allows a laptop to be up to 10 times faster than a similar laptop with a hard drive. 

Everything from booting up the system to rendering files and uploading videos will work significantly faster on a laptop that features an SSD storage unit. 

Therefore, while you might be compromising a bit on capacity you are winning in performance. That said if you don't want to compromise on anything you can always opt for the Acer Swift 3 SF314-42-R9YN, a slightly more expensive model we've covered recently that comes with 512 GB of SSD storage, massive battery life, and an octa-core processor for the most demanding users.

So what performance can I expect on a day-to-day?

Overall, with this set of specs, you're looking at a laptop that fits slightly above the entry-level models. In that regard, you can expect a laptop that's well suited for editing documents, streaming movies, doing research, programming (at a student level), and even some light picture editing. 

When it comes to multitasking you can also expect to have 5-7 tabs open without much hassle but I wouldn't go far beyond that if you don't want the laptop to lag. 

Battery life and graphics card

While battery life is a big deal in convertibles, that's not really the case on hybrid models such as this one. Specifically, the HP 15-dy1731ms in review features a battery that, according to recent reviewers, averages roughly 6 hours per charge. 

That's not that bad, all things considered, but far from the 10-hour claims, we've seen on several other models.  

When it comes down to graphics this is not a gaming laptop. With an integrated graphics card such as the Intel UHD graphics, you can expect a fluid experience streaming video in high resolution, doing the occasional picture editing and you could even go as far as to edit videos once in a while but we would not recommend this laptop for people who need to do graphically intensive tasks. 

Connectivity and Windows S Mode

As far as connectivity is concerned, we must admit we were a bit disappointed when we took a look over the available ports on the HP 15-dy1731ms.

 Specifically, this model comes with a couple of USB Type-A ports (USB 3.1) a single USB Type-C port (3.1 as well), HDMI, an audio jack, and an SD card reader. However, there's no USB 2.0 port to connect peripherals and, most surprisingly, there's no ethernet port.

Other than that, we appreciate the fact that it comes with WiFi 5 connectivity, as well as Bluetooth support and an HD webcam. 

Finally, something a lot of people have taken issue with is the fact that the laptop comes with Windows 10 Home in S Mode. This is very easily changed, something as easy as attempting to download chrome on the pre-installed browser will prompt Windows to ask you if you wish to disable S-Mode. That's it, that's all you need to do in order to disable S-Mode and be able to install anything you wish onto the device.

Verdict: To buy or not to buy?

Ultimately, I hope this review of the HP 15-dy1731ms has served you in helping you decide if this laptop is worth your money. Its got good internals, an attractive design, and is one of the few touchscreen laptops in the market that caters to the mid-range market. 

Sure enough, they could've worked the design a bit more and included a few extra ports, but overall this is a solid laptop for the average user that comes with the added bonus of having a touchscreen.