updated 04:00 am EDT, Tue June 10, 2008
HP TouchSmart IQ500
HP on Tuesday completely replaced theTouchSmart PC with a new design more conspicuously aimed at the iMac and a recent crop of Windows-based all-in-ones such as the Gateway One. The IQ500 series expands from the earlier 19-inch screen to a 22-inch model that also eliminates the separate floating display: the entire computer is stored behind the main display and uses a slot-load optical drive as well as side-mounted ports to keep the design thin. The touchscreen interface has likewise been given a makeover with a new Cover Flow-like fan layout for choosing music from album covers, an enhanced image editor, and an application tray that gives users access to many more touchscreen-driven apps than the original.
The new TouchSmarts move further upscale in design with the upgrade using a two-tone black and mahogany color scheme, a wireless mouse and keyboard pairing, and an ambient light sensor to adjust the display's brightness. A webcam and 802.11n Wi-Fi are also part of the common platform.
HP's update marks a switch from the original AMD-base design to Intel and starts off the $1,299 IQ504 model with a 2GHz Core 2 Duo paired with basic Intel graphics, 4GB of memory, and a 320GB hard drive. An upgrade to the IQ506 at $1,499 brings a 2.16GHz Core 2 Duo as well as GeForce 9300M GS dedicated video, a 500GB hard disk, and a combo ATSC/NTSC tuner that picks up both analog TV and HDTV signals and uses the computer's hard drive for DVR functions. HP should list both TouchSmarts online today and expects them to appear in retail shops by July 13th.