Back at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) earlier this year, Vizio announced its intentions of branching out into home computers, an interesting move for a company that ships more LCD HDTVs in the U.S. than anyone else. Well, Vizio made good on its promise today by officially announcing a line of all-in-one desktop models, a notebook, and a pair of thin-and-light laptops, all of which start at $898. Price is only part of the story here.
The other is the Apple styling that Vizio obviously took a cue from. Vizio's systems look like Apple products, but they're all PC (as in, Windows-based) on the inside.
"PCs haven't always been made with design at the forefront. While customers want an elegant, multi-purpose device capable of executing tasks and flawlessly delivering entertainment, some PCs still look like mundane work machines," said Matt McRae, Chief Technology Officer, VIZIO. "VIZIO is passionate about innovation, design and the user experience. We listened to consumers and created a line of PCs that deliver on productivity but are also uncompromisingly clean, stylish and sophisticated."
Vizio's all-in-one PCs are available with 24-inch and 27-inch Full HD 1080p displays. Both include a subwoofer for 2.1 surround sound audio with SRS Premium Sound HD, dual HDMI inputs, wireless keyboard, wireless touchpad, and IR remote. There are Core i3, i5, and i7 processor options, up to 8GB of DDR3-1600 memory, up to 1TB of hard drive space (optionally combined with a 32GB SSD), Intel HD 4000 and GeForce GT 640M LE graphics options, USB 3.0 support, eSATA, and a few other odds and ends.
Next up is Vizio's 15.6-inch notebook wrapped with a durable unibody design. It too has Core i3, i5, and i7 processor options, up to 8GB of RAM, up to 1TB of hard drive space along with an optional 32GB SSD, GeForce GT 640M LE graphics, 1.3MP webcam, USB 3.0, HDMI, SD card reader, and Windows 7 Homre Premium 64-bit.
Finally, Vizio launched a thin-and-light laptop line that it refers to as "the ultimate Ultrabook." These are available in 14-inch and 15.6-inch form factors instead of the more traditional 11.6-inch and 13.3-inch form factors and include the same processor options as above, 4GB of system memory, 128GB SSD, Intel HD 4000 graphics, USB 3.0, HDMI, 1.3MP webcam, and either a 1600x900 (14-inch) or 1920x1080 (15.6-inch) screen resolution.
Vizio says you'll be able to find these PCs at "key retailers such as Walmart, Amazon.com, Sam's club, Costco, Target, and Microsoft Store."