By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
LAS VEGAS – Vizio will roll out its spring computer line this week adding a new thin and light laptop and a large-screen Windows 8 tablet.
The new products are the Vizio 14-inch Thin + Light Touch laptop and the Vizio 11.6-inch Windows 8 tablet. These introductions mark the company’s first refresh of its computer line since it entered the PC space in June 2012.
Robynne Lee, Vizio’s senior product marketing manager, said the new products incorporate several new features into the Vizio portfolio, while bringing forward others from its current models that the company believes remain important to consumers.
Vizio added standard voltage quad-core processors to the Vizio 14, touch screens, replacing the ultra low voltage processors found in its first thin and light models. The company also enhanced the audio and video experience, Lee said.
The higher powered processor will give the consumer a full computer experience in a thin and light design, but without a negative impact on battery life, Lee said.
Rob Kermode, Vizio’s director of product development, computing, said the design team increased the battery capacity to compensate and managed to do so without increasing the overall size and weight of the computer which is 4.1 pounds.
Adding touchscreen was an obvious choice, Lee said, as the Windows 8 experience is not complete without that capacity. She added the audio/video improvements were possible do to the addition of discrete Nvidia graphics and the HD + display.
Other features include an AMD A10 2.3GHz quad-core processor, 8GB of RAM, 128 solid state drive, an HDMI output, HD camera and two USB 3.0 ports.
The features that remained constant are the overall design and the clean desktop by eliminating extraneous software and the use Microsoft Signature software. Lee said this allows the consumer to only have the software he or she wants on their computer.
The 11.6-inch tablet has a full HD display and runs Windows 8, not Windows RT, said Kermode. Vizio wanted to deliver a full computer in a tablet format so it went with Windows instead of Android.
The tablet is powered by an AMD Z60 dual core 1GHz processor, has 2GB of RAM with a 64GB SSD. There is a MicroHDMI out port, and a single USB 2.0 port. It also uses the Microsoft Signature software.
Pricing has not been set for either product, but the tablet is expected to ship in late March with the laptop going in February.
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