While Samsung’s unseen and unorthodox TV plans are still in the front line to steal the show at CES 2013, Chinese company Lenovo arguably hold the crown for most interesting product to have been revealed so far, after launching their ‘IdeaCentre Horizon’, a product that is described as a ‘table PC’ designed to be shared for computing, gaming, and entertainment.
The product itself is a 27-inch touchscreen that can be placed on any flat surface (tables, desks, walls, or floors), and supports multi-touch functionality enabling two or more people to play games or browse content (such as content or video) at the same time. The product is similar to the initial ‘Surface’ device launched by Microsoft as a ‘touchscreen table’, but Lenovo’s is the first aimed towards home use rather than the professional market.
The backlit ‘interpersonal PC’, under one of the many titles the Horizon is being dubbed, enables ’10-finger touch’ simultaneously, and along with features available on the Windows 8 operating system, offers up to 5,000 games and apps (through the Lenovo Store) customised to the product’s unique experience (which has been described as ‘part physical, part digital’ or ‘phygital’), including support from developers such as EA and Ubisoft, along with official add-on devices for the screen, such as keyboard and mouse sets, joysticks, and ’air hockey mallets’.
Lenovo product group president Peter Hortensius said of the Horizon’s potential: “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. Horizon makes personal computing interpersonal computing with shared, collaborative experiences among several people. 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 reflects our commitment to delivering the innovative products that define the PC Plus era.”
Meanwhile, the Horizon has been announced as being set for an ‘early summer’ US launchdate, with initial pricing at $1,699. Already looking ahead, though, Lenovo are also using CES 2013 to display a larger 39-inch widescreen version of their table PC, as a concept codenamed ‘Gamma’, representing the ‘potential future direction’ of the emerging market for such products. Could they be starting a ‘table-t’ revolution? Judge for yourself with the official product trailer below: