Remember that touchscreen from a decade ago, called TouchLinc? It was one of the few affordable X10 touchscreen controllers at the time. It had black and white screen and three hardwired connections: power, PC Serial port (for programming) and 4-conductor telephone cable to your powerline interface.
Guess what? Smarthome is releasing an updated wireless version pretty soon (expected in stock 5/18/2010). Yes, of course it will support INSTEON, and to accomplish that you will have to have a SmartLinc (aka 2412N) controller in your set-up.
So, what’s new?
As it was already mentioned, it’s a wireless (WiFi) device running on 1500mA/h battery, so no more wires of any kind. It doesn’t require any programming either, since your configuration will be downloaded from the SmartLinc.
The touchscreen grew to a whopping 7″ of color goodness at 800 x 480 resolution. But since the default SmartLinc theme is optimized for 4″ iPod Touch or iPhone you will have to upload a new theme to your SmartLinc to make it look better on 7″ LCD panel. It uses Internet browser as a front-end, but I’m not sure if you will be able to use it for browsing the Net, most probably it will run in kiosk mode. It will support IP cameras though.
It doesn’t seem like there are any hardware buttons on the body (may be just the power switch). And there are no speakers either, so no YouTube videos for you. 😉
Wall mount and tabletop stand are sold separately.
Pricing? Surprisingly, it’s the same $299.99 as for the original TouchLinc. Not so bad, but considering that Apple’s iPad is on the horizon, it may become a big competitor for the multi-task-loving crowd.
TouchLinc INSTEON Touchscreen is available for pre-order at Smarthome now.