Today, HP took the wraps off of its latest generation of TouchSmart all-in-one products. Under development for an extended period of time, the TouchSmart 610 addresses one of the primary criticisms leveled at touchscreen desktops: they’re physically painful to use. To assuage some of these concerns, HP’s new TS 610 can recline so far it almost lays down flat.
The TouchSmart 610 comes with HP’s TouchSmart 4.0 software suite pre-installed. TS 4.0, which is a reasonable attempt to shoehorn Windows 7 into a finger-friendly environment, comes with touch-oriented versions of Facebook, Twitter, Netflix, Hulu and webcam apps.
HP’s TouchSmart 610 also comes with a number of upgrades over the 310 model, including a higher-performance Beats Audio sound system, a larger, 23-inch screen and full HD 1080p resolution.
The lower-end TouchSmart 310 was the first major redesign of the TouchSmart lineup in several years, and HP wasn’t about to waste all of that design IP; the new TouchSmart 610 follows many of the same lines. The most striking departure, however, is the stand.
One of the biggest criticisms of touchscreen desktops, including the TouchSmart, is the simple discomfort involved in using them. After an extended time, holding one’s arms up becomes painful. HP seeks to change that by changing how the computer is used. The 610 is able to recline up to 60 degrees back, providing a much more comfortable experience for users who wish to sit and interact with the TouchSmart for long periods of time.
In addition to the larger screen size and vastly improved stand, the TouchSmart 610 will also ship with an exclusive multitouch-enabled version of Ubisoft’s real-time strategy game, R.U.S.E. We saw this being demoed on the TouchSmart 310 late last year – while it seems like a brilliant way of showing off the TouchSmart’s multi-touch capabilities, the 310 simply didn’t have the hardware to back up the game’s graphical requirements.
The TouchSmart 610, however, packs higher-end processors and graphics cards in addition to its larger screen. R.U.S.E. will likely have no issue running on the better hardware.
Available starting February 9th, the TouchSmart 610 will carry a starting price of just $899.99 – which shows how prices have fallen over the last several years.
Just as the TouchSmart 600 was used as a model for the business-targeted HP TouchSmart 9100, so too was the 610 used to develop a business version. The TouchSmart 9300 offers business users the same 60 degree reclining capabilities and Beats Audio; HP is expecting to launch the new version sometime in May.