HP’s Multi Jet Fusion wasn’t the only major announcement to come out of the company’s media event on Wednesday. Sticking with the content creation theme, HP also announced a new all-in-one computer with a bit of a twist.
Sprout looks no different from any other Windows 8 AIO save for the overhead scanner with integrated projector. That overhead scanner, known as the Sprout Illuminator, packs a combination of LEDs and cameras to project a 20-inch display onto a capacitive touchpad referred to as the Touch Mat.
In addition to being able to interact with stuff onscreen (play a virtual piano, move puzzle pieces around, etc.), users can place objects onto the Touch Mat and have Sprout scan them into the computer. It’s only able to scan the top half of items (the part facing upwards towards the Sprout Illuminator) although we’re told HP is working on a version that supports full 3D scanning for the future.
HP is marketing it as more of an immersive computing platform instead of your run-of-the-mill computer or even a specific product. It came about as a collaborative effort between HP, Intel, Microsoft and 3M as the first piece in HP’s planned “blended reality” ecosystem.
As for the hardware itself, Sprout packs an Intel Core i7-4970S processor, 8GB of RAM, Nvidia GeForce GT745A graphics and a 1TB hard drive – all running Windows 8.1.
Sprout will launch with a small assortment of apps on November 9 priced at $1,899. That’s certainly a lot of coin for what’s basically an experimental PC and while there’s plenty of potential here, its success will hinge on whether or not developers can / are willing to come up with practical applications for it.
Images courtesy CNET.