A few years ago at CES, Bill Gates demoed a future technology that would allow users to sit down in a restaurant, hotel, or airline lounge and use an interactive table surface to get work done. It was a very kludgey design at the time and didn't look like it would actually be made. Flash forward to yesterday when Microsoft's Steve Balmer officially unveiled Microsoft Surface.
Essentially Surface is a high powered computer built into a beautiful looking table with a 30-inch touch sensitive screen that can recognize objects placed on it. Using dynamic touch, infrared cameras, and physical objects, users can order food, browse photos, load their Zune with music, play games and a lot more. While it would be great to have one of these as the new coffee table in the house, Microsoft is targeting retail stores, restaurants, and entertainment venues with a price range of $5,000 to $10,000. Surface looks very cool, but can it beat tabletop Pac-Man?
Take the jump for specifications, more images and a video that shows this table in action.
Horizontal orientation. The 30-inch display in a table-like form factor allows users to share, explore and create experiences together, enabling a truly collaborative computing experience.
Dimensions. 22 inches high, 21 inches deep and 42 inches wide.
Materials. The tabletop is acrylic, and its interior frame is powder-coated steel.
The custom software platform runs on Windows Vista and has wired Ethernet 10/100 and wireless 802.11 b/g and Bluetooth 2.0 connectivity.
Beginning at the end of this year (2007), consumers will be able to interact with Surface in hotels, restaurants, retail and public entertainment venues