The computer industry has spent much time obsessing over how to make things smaller. Teensy smartphones. Thin tablets. Itty-bitty USB drives. InFocus is saying, "Screw that!" and going big with its new Mondopad.
As the name suggests, the Mondopad is a honking big tablet. This is 55 inches of HD tablet that can go up on a wall or hang out on a stand. It's so big you'll be cleaning hand prints rather than fingerprints off of the glass.
I know what you're thinking. This could be awesome for gaming. I'm sorry to break it to you, but it has a different purpose in life.
The Mondopad's aim is to drain the boring out of business meetings. It features a multitouch display, video conferencing, a 720p video camera, Wi-Fi, and soundbar speakers. It can act as a whiteboard, browse the Web, or display PowerPoint presentations, Word docs, and other typical business-y sorts of files.
InFocus is highlighting the HD video conferencing, which works through a partnership with Vidtel, a provider of cloud-based conferencing. The technology plays nice with traditional video conferencing systems, laptops, video phones, and services like Google Chat. It brings all participants together in one place regardless of the system they are using.
Writing and drawing tools come along for the ride. Imagine scribbling all over those dull presentation slides. Add a mustache to the photo of your CEO. Rework the sales figures chart. Etch some "BizLife 4Ever" graffiti under the bullet points.
At $5,949, the Mondopad does cost a bit more than an iPad. The video conferencing service starts at an additional $49 per connection per month. That price tag puts it firmly in the business realm where tax write-offs make the cost go down easier.
The Mondopad may not single-handedly turn all business meetings into fun-filled events, but it definitely has more character than a white screen with a projector.