HP continues onward with development of their touch-crazy TouchSmart all-in-one PC’s. While not directly an HTPC, you can see how the touch features and large 23 inch screen could fit rather nicely in a variety of environments. At $1049 however, it’s quite an investment.
The part that makes it stand out from other systems is, of course, the touchscreen. HP built a custom interface over the top of Windows 7, and it works really well. The interface allows you to access Hulu, Twitter, Netflix, and a really nice recipe program. For the most part, the Hulu and Netflix interfaces are customized and optimized to work with the touch screen. The Netflix interface is particularly well done, and scrolls by nicely with the flick of a finger. I also (being a photographer) enjoyed the Canvas program. It really takes advantage of the multi-touch functionality, allowing you to shrink, enlarge, drag, and otherwise manipulate your images on the touchscreen. If you move at a slower pace, the screen is about 98% accurate. If you move too fast though, you do lose a bit of accuracy. The screen is responsive, but you do have to be careful not to flick too fast. Running programs in the background will definitely have an impact on the responsiveness.