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June 10, 2008

HP Unveils TouchSmart PCs

By Rajani Baburajan, TMCnet Contributing Editor

HP unveiled a new generation of its all-in-one TouchSmart family of PCs, making digital entertainment more of a hands-on experience for users.

The new PCs feature HP software designed specifically for touch. By moving their fingers over a high-resolution screen, users can access information, play music, create playlists, zoom in or out of photos, and watch TV.
"Our engineers have created a fun, engaging and simple touch experience for the home that nobody else offers today," said John Cook, vice president of marketing at HP’s worldwide consumer PC business, in a statement. "We're changing personal computing from just feeds and speeds to an experience influenced by consumer trends and design that anticipates customer's needs. The HP TouchSmart PC is all about reinventing the personal computer experience."

HP TouchSmart IQ500 series PC software brings a new digital entertainment experience to home PC users. Using this software, consumers can browse a music collection by album art in a tiled fashion or fan view. People can crop, edit and share photos as well as upload them directly to Snapfish from HP without the need to use a keyboard or mouse.

Consumers also can watch and record their favorite TV shows, burn personal videos with the built-in DVD burner, upload videos they create directly to YouTube (News - Alert), and enjoy high-quality sound with the integrated stereo speakers. The built-in Webcam and microphone are additional features that facilitate unlimited communication possibilities, including video chat and conference, to the users.
"The introduction of a touch computer with such a strong focus on digital entertainment opens the door to an entirely new way for consumers to engage with their content," said Stephen Baker, vice president, industry analysis, The NPD Group (News - Alert), in a statement.
HP TouchSmart PCs combine a 22-inch diagonal, high-definition, widescreen display with an Intel (News - Alert) Core 2 Duo processor in a single, integrated design. Additional notable features include a wireless keyboard and integrated wireless LAN (WLAN).
The HP TouchSmart PC is the result of 25 years of HP touch-technology design and development, which was first brought to market in 1983 with the introduction of the HP 150 PC. HP now uses the touch technology in a variety of products, including the HP iPAQ rx5900 Travel Companion, HP Pavilion tx2500 Tablet Notebook PC, select HP Photosmart printers and HP business monitors.

The first-generation HP TouchSmart PC was introduced more than 17 months ago as the industry's first touch-based, all-in-one consumer PC. The new HP TouchSmart IQ504 and IQ506 PCs offer exciting ways for consumers to use touch as never before used in an all-in-one consumer PC.

Prices for the base model HP TouchSmart IQ504 PC and the TV-tuner equipped IQ506 PC are expected to start at $1,299 and $1499, respectively.
Rajani Baburajan is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Rajani’s articles, please visit her columnist page.

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