On the last day of my parents staying with us Dadonthebrink and I finally managed to go out. It was our date night. However it was a date night with a difference: I dragged him to London to a product launch by Lenovo.
In the early evening traffic it took nearly 2 hours to navigate our way into Soho. Yes, we drove, for all our sins!
Some of our best chats happen when we are in the car for longer journeys. This occasion was no different. We talked shop- kids, planning the weeks ahead-, but also politics, wikileaks, DNA, patents, marketing, food crisis. Plain refreshing adult conversation! No kids or housework distracting us, just the odd lunatic motorist.
At the swanky bar in Soho we were greeted by these 27 inch tablets laid out on tables, surrounded by squealing adults.
We were miffed! That is until we joined in. There was a hockey tournament going on: the puck was digital, but the striker was real, to hold in your hand. The puck did some strange accelerated moves at times, causing confusion and lots of own-goals, yet it was so much fun! It was interactive with a real person opposite you as an opponent and the usual banter to go along with that.
The game got rather competitive, with real injuries as competitive hands crashed again and again.
We went on to dip our toes into some poker, roulette, Monopoly, tried some educational games aimed at Littlins too. There was a real dice to throw and mini joysticks to use!
I try to steer away from computer games, especially after my recent brush with Candy Crush addiction. However, this evening was fun and introduced games which are meant to be played together, as a group of friends, as a family. They bring back the social into the living room.
I can really see the possibilities with this device for educational activities and lots of family fun.
So what was this device? It’s a tablet and it’s an all-in-one PC rolled into one called the Lenovo Horizon. Described as a bit of a loaner in a new category- tabletop PC- as a tablet it runs its own operating system overlaid onto Windows 8 and boasts with 27 inch (!) 10 point touchscreen display, a built-in battery laying totally flat on a table; as an all-in-one PC it has a pretty decent spec with an i5 processor, 8MB RAM and 1 TB of storage, enough for probably your whole photo and music library. (I laugh at myself even remembering these details- all thanks to recently having to invest in a new laptop for myself.)
Lenovo have also come up with Bluestack, which allows you run your Android apps too. I Like!
On the way home Dadonthebrink and I were excitedly discussing the potential uses around the home for the Horizon. There are so many! However, our discussion kept coming back to its £1500 price tag. It’s a great piece of kit, but would we be able to exploit it as an all round family hub to really justify the price?
The video on the Lenovo website shows a scenario I can so imagine playing out in our house, except I’d be shouting at the kids to take care or perhaps to leave the Horizon in place.