Hewlett-Packard has launched its consumer-oriented multi-touch tablet PC, the TouchSmart tx2.
The PC integrates hardware and software to provide an interface that lets people use their fingers or a stylus for on-screen manipulation of digital entertainment, like video, photos, music, a variety of Windows software including Microsoft Office, most web browsers and photo applications.
The software core of the multi-touch capabilities of the tx2 is called MediaSmart 2.0 that makes it possible to use gestures such as swipes, pinches, double-taps and finger rotations to manipulate content the way so far Apple's iPhone and iPod Touch have been doing.
HP has also partnered with MTV Networks to bring in video, Comedy Central, and Nickelodeon, which will be organised and updated automatically in MediaSmart 2.0.
HP TouchSmart tx2 joins the likes of Dell's Latitude XT, though the tx2 scores over Dell's system in terms of consumer-oriented software. In a statement, Ted Clark, senior vice president for HP's personal system group, said: "With the introduction of the TouchSmart tx2, HP is providing users an easier, more natural way to interact with their PCs, and furthering touch innovation."
The tx2 features a standard keyboard and a 12.1-inch screen that can be placed upright for use like a typical notebook, if needed. Otherwise, the screen can swivel and be laid flat. Besides multi – touch, the notebook's stylus can be used to write or draw on the screen, which has a resolution of 1,200 by 800 pixels.
The notebook weighs 4.5 pounds, and comes with Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) Athlon X2 or Turion X2 dual-core processors. Other parts of the hardware configuration include an ATI Radeon HD 3200 graphics processor, up to 8GB of memory, and a 500GB hard drive, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi wireless technology, an integrated camera and a DVD writer. The tx2 is available for pre-order, and is scheduled to start shipping by the end of month. The notebook has a starting price tag of $1,149.