First Look: HP Photosmart Premium TouchSmart Web
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First Look: HP Photosmart Premium TouchSmart Web

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Aside from the never-ending name, the HP Photosmart Premium TouchSmart Web All-in-One Printer looks good and prints high-quality photos at competitive speeds. We also appreciate effort put into the downloadable applications for the interactive touch screen, but the innovation is offset by a hefty price tag. Unless Web-connectivity and touch screens are a top priority, we recommend checking out HP's Photosmart multifunction printers that still offer high performance at a much lower cost.

[Music] ^M00:00:03 >> HP recently debuted a full line of desktops and laptop computers with touch-screens. But can HP successfully parlay that into their new line of printers? Well, you're about to find out. I'm Justin Yew [Assumed spelling] associate editor with cnet.com with the first look at the HP Photo Smart premium TouchSmart web printer. So the TouchSmart web is a new breed of all-in-one printer, an the flagship model of HP's Photo Smart line, weighing in at a hefty $400. Now the main reason for that price tag is it's 4.33 inch touch-screen that can actually connect wirelessly to the Internet. Finally letting you cut the cord between the computer and the printer. Now the web connectivity also let's you access HP's new app studio to download free short cut widgets from companies like Pixar, Fandango, Google, et cetera, straight to the printer. Now from there you can tap each one to add or delete apps from your favorites list, and then finalize them on the virtual home screen. Now unfortunately the list of current apps available to download is pretty sparse, and the ones that are down there kind of feel gimmicky, especially all of the children's coloring books and games. Now other apps like Google Maps, U.S.A. Today News and weather reports could potentially be useful if they didn't take so long to navigate and load. Now in addition, we also noticed a significant lag in the responsiveness of the touch-screen and the apps themselves had a tendency to freeze up on us, requiring a long restart. So on top of that, we're still confused about why home users need a touch-screen on their printers in the first place. Now why would anybody want to suffer through all the hunting and pecking on a tiny 4-inch screen when there's a good chance that a computer, monitor, keyboard, and mouse aren't too far away. We even put this theory to the test and timed how long it would take to print out a specific location using a Google map widget on the TouchSmart versus using an actual computer and clicking print. Now not surprisingly, the former look 1.27 minutes to complete the test. And the latter took only 21.4 seconds. Now aside from the touch-screen and the aesthetics, there really aren't that many differences between this model and the cheaper Photo Smarts. There's an auto duplexer for double-sided prints, a covered media bay, and a dual paper tray that separates photo and letter-sized paper. So that's pretty cool. But for some reason HP does not include an auto document feeder, which are actually incredibly convenient for scanning or copying large stacks of documents. Now also we were able to get better performance scores out of the HP office jet pro 8500 wireless printer, which also happens to cost less and do more. So overall, we do applaud HP for forging ahead and releasing the first touch-screen printer for the home, but it still needs to iron out some wrinkles before they're ready for main stream success. So check out all of details in our full review, but that's going to do it for me. I'm Justin Yew, and you just look a first look at the HP Photo Smart premium TouchSmart web printer. Thanks for watching.

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