So what would an ideal kitchen PC look like? First, it should not look like a PC. Secondly, it should be stylish. Last but not least, it has to be cheap.
HP TouchSmart PC come very close. It's stylish and doesn't scream "I am a PC". However, it has an anti-recession price. The starting price is $1299 but you can't watch TV yet. If you want to watch TV and wall mountable, you are looking at almost $2000. Ouch...
I feel that PC makers are approaching this "final frontier" upside down. They want people to buy a PC and turn it into something else. In my last post, I talked about PC as a "lonely" experience. TV in a kitchen is a social experience. Imagine this, NCAA basketball championship game is on. Mr. and Mrs. Partyfun are throwing a bash. As usual, the guys and maybe some gals gather around the 50" plasma in the living room or family room enjoying the HDTV and surround sound experience. The rest are hanging out in the kitchen with the game on in the TV - talking and once in a while checking the score. Do you think they care if this is a $2000 PC or a $300 appliance?
I would propose building a TV that happens to have a PC brain. With the introduction of Atom processor, an OEM can offer an appliance that gives people the social experience first - TV - and other convinences later - ondemand content streaming, sticky notes, grocey lists, etc. And by the way, please don't charge us an arm and a leg. The netbook is less than $400... Hmm... May be I'll buy one of those netbooks and mount it upside down under my kitchen cabinet???