When we reviewed the TouchSmart PC the first time, I said that while it had stronger touch-aware applications than do most touchscreen computers. HP’s own software isn’t enough, however, and for the platform to really take off they needed to open it up to any developer willing to write a program. Now, finally, they have.
In addition, they’ve partnered with TouchSmartCommunity to offer a bounty. The best application they receive will net the developer a top-of-the-line 25.5″ TouchSmart PC, as well as an expenses-paid trip to CES2009 to demo the app at the HP booth. Three runners up wil all receive 22″ TouchSmarts as well as have their applications shown at the booth. This is a really great way for HP to get third party developers to shower some love on their spiffy touchscreen line, not to mention a plus for people who have already bought the machine.
I have said it time and time before, but the software is really what sells technologies like this, and for HP to keep relevant in this device space, they need to continuously differentiate themselves by showing users something amazing that the TouchSmart can do that others can’t. If they don’t give the user something cool and useful, then why bother with the TouchSmart at all, when so many other manufacturers (Apple, Sony, Dell, etc) are offering the same basic all-in-one computer?
The contest runs from October 30th to December 5th. If you’ve got any ideas, submit them now and get people voting.