HP Touchsmart TX2
At first glance, HP’s TX2 is a pretty average, if rather chunky, 12.1-inch notebook. However, beneath the chubby exterior is a full touchscreen, a radical feature that none of the other laptops tested here have. It also boasts a neat party trick – you can twist the screen around and use the TX2 like a tablet.
The touchscreen is accurate when used with the supplied stylus, although a little less so when using your fingers. Surprisingly, doing the latter doesn’t seem to clog up the screen with grime either.
There is also a normal keyboard, which is great, and the keys have a good, solid feel. The design of the machine is a little wacky, with tattoo-like graphics on the casing, but they are reasonably subtle.
Although the TX2 is one of the lightest machines here, at just over 1.9kg, it’s a bit bulky compared with the others. But for people who need to do a lot of relatively simple data entry while out and about, this is a superb unit, as you’re effectively getting both a data-entry tablet and a laptop PC in one.
When Microsoft introduces Windows 7 later this year, it will become a lot more useful, as the new software includes better support for touchscreens, making it easier to navigate. But for now, the TX2 is more of a curiosity than a real day-to-day machine.
PROS Touchscreen interface
CONS Bulky design