Laying on its back, Lenovo's IdeaCenter Horizon is about the size of an end table. That's exactly how Lenovo was showing off this new 27" computer 'table' at CES today. Weighing in at 17 lbs, the Horizon can be propped up to be used like a large all-in-one PC, but when laid on its back, it automatically jumps into table mode, where a nifty multitouch interface takes over.
I jokingly called it a "table-let." A Lenovo rep looked at me as if he had heard the joke before.
The Horizon could be interesting for gaming with its Windows 8 OS and full PC specs, with configurations that include Intel Core i7 processors and discreet graphics. This means that any Windows 8 compatible game will run on this big touchscreened beast, with full ten-fingered multitouch support.
Things become more interesting in table mode. The custom multitouch Aura interface awaits input from all of your fingers, or can use custom items for further interaction. Lenovo showed off examples of special dice, tops and sliding paddles, allowing players to have board game-like experiences, or maybe play some virtual air hockey.
Companies like Electronic Arts and Ubisoft have each created a title specifically for this table PC. EA has a special version of popular board game Monopoly, while Ubisoft has a new titles Raiding Company and King of Opera. I saw these and others, like casino games, running on the device at a pre-CES showing. They were all shown as selectable titles in Aura's cool wheel-based menu system.
As for pricing, we'll have to wait a bit longer to hear final numbers. Of course, prices will vary depending on hardware configuration. Lenovo did hint that we should see the Horizon priced similar to currently available all-in-one desktop PCs. These systems are expected to ship later this summer.