Already one of the leaders of the home-computing market, HP has upped the pressure on its rivals with the launch of a range of PCs under the all-in-one computing banner. The range includes PCs with touch-sensitive screens, and what HP claims is the first all-in-one tablet PC based on Microsoft's Vista operating system.
With the launch of the HP TouchSmart PC, the company is reverting to type, by trying to out-innovate the competition rather than trying to beat them on price. The TouchSmart PC features a touchscreen that enables one-touch wireless access to information, communications and entertainment though a customisable front-end, the HP Smart Centre.
And if the emphasis on technological features brings HP back to its roots as a computer maker, the launch of a touchscreen PC underlines that. Touchscreen PCs stopped being fashionable some years ago, but HP was the first company to popularise them over 20 years ago with the launch of the HP 150.
The TouchSmart PC is a very different animal to the HP 150, and its features include a new user interface that includes HP's SmartCalendar for family calendaring and HP PhotoSmart Touch to manage digital photos. It has a 19-inch widescreen with adjustable touchscreen display, Vista remote control and personal video recorder with HD and SD TV programming.
The TouchSmart PC was launched on Sunday at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.
HP believes the TouchSmart PC will appeal to all the family
HP launched several other products at CES, including what it claims is the first consumer tablet PC optimised for Microsoft Windows Vista. The HP Pavilion tx1000 Entertainment Notebook PC features a touchscreen display, built-in miniature remote control, and a HP QuickPlay instant movie-viewing feature.
The tx1000's touchscreen will swivel 180° degrees, or folds flat for working or enjoying movies in tight travel spaces