Today at its IFA presser, Sony announced a 20-inch touch-enabled tabletop PC it's calling the VAIO Tap 20. Featuring a unique adjustable stand that lets owners orient the device between upright and lay-flat positions, and paired with Microsoft's touch-centric Windows 8 operating system, Sony describes the Tap 20 as "a fresh, new concept in home computing." The company has tailored the PC for use in the living room, claiming its Mobile BRAVIA Engine 2 technology makes for smoother movie viewing and boasting of its audio prowess thanks to proprietary ClearAudio+ and S-Force Front Surround 3D sound. The Tap 20's panel carries a resolution of 1600 x 900.
AIO's have had touch capabilities for some time now, though Sony's solution knocks out one of the more common complaints associated with such hardware: arm fatigue. When moved into a flat orientation, the Tap 20 might stir memories of Microsoft's original Surface computing technology, an association solidified by the built-in "One-touch" interaction with supported NFC devices.
As for what's inside the Tap 20, you'll be able to opt for an Intel Core i3, i5, or i7 processor. RAM options include both 4 and 8GB configurations, with storage maxing out at 1TB. Unfortunately you're limited to Intel HD 4000 graphics, and though the integrated chipset is capable enough in its own right, that rules out any dreams of this being your high-end gaming machine.
Sony clearly wants the Tap 20 to be portable in your home: a rechargeable battery allows the tabletop hardware to be moved between rooms easily. That said, don't confuse this thing with a tablet: it weighs in at a hefty 11 pounds. It's set for release at some point in October — presumably right alongside the latest version of Windows — but Sony is so far keeping quiet on pricing details.