Are they monitors or desktops? Maybe both: AOC's new lineup includes 22- and 24-inch touchscreen LCDs running Android 4.1.
Rick BroidaSenior Editor
Rick Broida is the author of numerous books and thousands of reviews, features and blog posts. He writes CNET's popular Cheapskate blog and co-hosts Protocol 1: A Travelers Podcast (about the TV show Travelers). He lives in Michigan, where he previously owned two escape rooms (chronicled in the ebook "I Was a Middle-Aged Zombie").
When is a monitor more than just a monitor? When it's also a PC.
AOC's new mySmart All-in-One series gives you a 22- or 24-inch LED-backlit touchscreen, complete with HDMI and VGA inputs for connecting the source of your choice.
No source? No problem: the mySmart comes preloaded with Android 4.2 4.1 (Ice Cream Sandwich) and various PC-like features, making it a self-contained, somewhat portable desktop. Just one that runs Android instead of Windows or Mac OS. Update:According to an AOC rep, the monitors do come with Android 4.1, not 4.2.
In other words, this is kind of like an oversize tablet, one designed for a desk or countertop rather than a couch or carry-on bag. Sound like something you could use?
In addition to the aforementioned inputs, these IPS (!) monitors offer a 1,920x1,080 native resolution and two-point touch capabilities. The system runs on an Nvidia 1.6GHz T33 quad-core processor and comes with 8GB of expandable storage.
Other specs include a front-facing 720p camera (for Skype calls and the like), four USB ports, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, dual speakers, and an SDHC slot.
Although it's not expressly stated in the description, it appears from the photos that the mySmart's folding stand can position the monitor at a variety of angles, including a fairly shallow one for typing -- though I suspect anyone planning to use this for email, word processing, or the like would prefer an actual keyboard. Any Bluetooth or even USB model should do the trick.
If you've stuck around this far, you're no doubt wondering how these are priced. After all, it's the rare Windows-powered all-in-one that sells for under $500, and iMacs start at around $1,300.
The 22-inch AOC A2272PW4T has a list price of $300, while the 24-inch A2472PW4T will sell for $400. To put that in some perspective, Best Buy currently sells an Acer 23-inch touchscreen IPS monitor for $300. But it's just a monitor -- there's no Android onboard.
Needless to say, whether you're in the market for a new PC or a new monitor, it might be worth considering one of AOC's mySmart models. They're barely more expensive than their non-smart counterparts.