I’ll be honest. When Lenovo first told me that they were coming out with a table PC, I really thought that it was a typo. “A table PC? Surely they meant a tablet PC.” Nope. Ever since Microsoft first came out with the original Surface table computer (now known as the PixelSense), consumers have been taken with the idea of getting one of these large-screened, collaborative computing devices for themselves.
The promise of the IdeaCentre Horizon is just that – collaboration. When you make the computer this big, and everyone has an input device (i.e., fingers – you aren’t being limited to using a single keyboard and mouse, here), then it really changes the game in terms of how the computer gets used. Whereas before computers were a solitary thing, and gaming consoles could be social, a computer like the Horizon makes the computer a social experience.
For the moment, of course, that means games. And Lenovo is trying to ship the device with a few games free of charge, to give both users and developers an idea of the potential that a computer like this holds.
Pre-installed are a strategy game, games where you control a little figurine and try and kill the other players, much-beloved (and much-maligned) family title Monopoly, etc. In practice, the experience was pretty smooth, and a lot easier than finding all the pieces and Monopoly money (plus side: no cheating!).
Lenovo also let us spend some time with peripherals they’ve designed for use with the new Horizon PC – including digital dice, joysticks, and a striker, which was demoed in an video air hockey game.
In all, it’s clear that Lenovo has an exciting product on their hands – and at an estimated $1699 MSRP, a real chance to get it into homes.
We’ll post a more detailed review once Lenovo sends us a product for review. Until then, stay tuned for more CES 2013 news!