Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Touching Is The New Secks

You see it everywhere these days, many mobile devices are moving toward touch interfaces, from the Apple iPhones, HTC Touches and Samsung (I can't remember).

Design-wise, i think this is a good thing. handheld devices and touch technology go hand-in-hand, because i think it's intuitive. check out this video of firefox mobile for the iPhone if you need any more evidence that touch is more than just a fancy marketing gimmick, but it changes the way you interact with your tools:

Firefox Mobile Concept Video from Aza Raskin on Vimeo.

So imagine my eyes-widening when uniquefrequency and melvin invited me to their HP TouchSmart Blogger event. Now, this is interesting, i've always been organising Open Room events for bloggers, now it was a chance to finally be a blogger. And a tech event no less!

this is what we all came to see:

le touchsmart by HP

I hope I'll be honest and objective here. I do like the HP Touch Smart, i think HP have gone a long way to design a desktop that is intuitive to use, is a speaking point in any home or as a living room feature. this is a very sexy lifestyle product.

it runs on a special version of Windows Vista, so the aero interface goes very well with the physical black aesthetics, and it has the main entertainment features in play, coverflow for your music and videos, 22" HD screen to enjoy your digital photo albums, all at the touch of your fingertips. it literally causes you to rethink the way you approach a personal computer, especially when you're brought up using a mouse or keyboard. HP have included these peripherals, but i think if you want the true experience, you'd be touching. *ahem*

but i think beyond that, it's a regular PC with some touch technology (which in itself interesting, i learn there are cameras all over the screen that track the movement of your fingers - it aint pressure sensitive though.)

for something that looks like an apple imac (which starts at 24"), sustainable graphic cards, wireless mouse and keyboard, and in itself a space saver, yet offers enough power to edit videos and images without much hassle, the HP TouchSmart has found itself a worthy competitor.

But you can't touch an iMac, and i think that is enough of a unique proposition that might sway your decision. Could this be the first step toward new desktop based products that will be more intuitive to use, not just in terms of aesthetics and usability, but the backend programming that makes using such touch-focused products easier rather than more difficult?

as i maintain, i'm a big fan of the aesthetics, i'd get it if i had money to burn, but it ain't no desktop replacement. not at this point at least.

Apart from that, it was nice to see how other agencies approach blogger engagement. my personal experience was that I was well attended to, met up with old and new friends, and it was social, not some marketing babble schpwel. if any, it was kept to a bare minimum.

if I can refer any client executives to the way the HP reps conducted themselves in blogger-produced vodcasts, check this example out from the fine folks at the Geek Goddess Show:

intelligible, simple, clear and articulate. and use of visual aids! anything to help us understand your product or service better -)

of course the food was stellar, and the beer was *muackz*

i'll leave you now with some pictures because i'm too lazy to fit them contextually into this post:

Bloggers are not an unruly bunch! they listen to what you have to say!
How many of you were really listening?

bitbot streaming live to Qik:
streaming to Qik

bitbot and me
me & the bitbot

now with the incredible nadnut
nadnut & me

clicktokill is another rock grrl
ClicktoKill & Me

Nicole always smiling when i see her
Nicole85 & Me

and my homies, beatmastermark and uniquefrequency
litford, beatmastermark & uniquefrequency

More photos at: social media misadventures

Other posts:


Melvin Yuan said...

dude! was good to have you join us :) and thanks for the objective take on it. respect!

Daniel said...

Thank you for your participation and feedback. Just to clarify that the hp touchsmart software runs on a regular Windows Vista OS. We look forward to meeting you in future events..cheers.

Daniel Cheng
Consumer Desktop product manager

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