Lenovo’s demonstrated a tabletop PC with a 27-inch screen – rather like a tablet for giants – which should be available by early summer.
The IdeaCentre Horizon Table PC can lie flat on any surface, runs Windows 8 and is specifically designed for touch-screen games with several players. The company’s also working on a 39-inch wide-screen version, code-named Gamma.
“We’ve seen technology shifts across the four screens, from the desktop to the laptop, tablet and smartphone, and yet, while people have more computing power than ever before, there is still room for technologies like Horizon that bring people together,” says Peter Hortensius, product group president.
“Now many people can enjoy different photos, music and video on the same screen, and they can play games with our special accessories that blend physical and digital interaction.”
Horizon comes with Nvidia GeForce graphics and Dolby Home Theatre v4 audio, and is powered by Intel Core i7 processors. It weighs about 8kg.
Accessories include an e-dice and four joysticks and strikers; toe-curlingly, Lenovo’s coined the word ‘phygital’ for the mixture of physical and digital activity involved.
The Lenovo App Shop gives users access to more than 5,000 multi-user entertainment apps, says the company. There’s also exclusive access to or pre-loaded games and educational apps from Electronic Arts and Ubisoft – who have customized games for it – as well as FableVision and Open Labs. Meanwhile, FilmOn TV gives access to more than 120 streaming TV channels.
“Together we’re breaking new ground by bringing Ubisoft’s collection of exhilarating games to Lenovo’s Horizon Table PC and the Windows 8 operating system,” says Carrie Tice, senior director of strategic sales and partnerships at Ubisoft. “Horizon lets you play games the way they were intended to be played – many people using touch on a super-sized screen.”
Laying the Horizon flat activates the company’s Aura multi-user, multi-touch interface, and allows pre-loaded gaming and educational apps to be activated or downloaded from the online app store. But the device can convert into a desktop machine, and with a backlit screen viewable from any angle, Lenovo says it can easily work as a family’s main PC. At a price of $1,699, it’ll probably need to.