Retromodo: HP’s 1983 Touchscreen All-In-One

Retromodo: HP’s 1983 Touchscreen All-In-One

With tablets, smartphones and touch-capable operating systems, you could be forgiven for thinking that touch-based computing is only a new phenomenon. In product terms, though, it’s been around for quite some time, as this 1983 touchscreen all-in-one demonstrates.

HP dug the HP 150 out of mothballs to demonstrate against its new all-in-one lines; the intent was clearly to show how things have progressed in terms of computing power and design.

Back in 1983, one of these little numbers would have set you back a hefty US$3995.

The touchscreen technology behind the 150 is interesting in its own right; rather than a resistive or capacitive array behind the screen, it used infrared sensors to detect objects on the screen as they were tapped.

The display you can see here doesn’t mean that the 150 was actually on; that image is burnt into the display.

One thing that this AIO has that you don’t see on a modern integrated system is its own printer. I asked HP’s Stacy Wolff if they’d consider integrating a printer into new models, but it’s apparently “not likely at this time.”

Alex Kidman travelled to Shanghai as a guest of HP. The coffee still isn’t kicking in.