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If you thought that Samsung's Galaxy Note 10.1 was the largest Android-based device with a touch screen, think again. ViewSonic last week unveiled the VSD220 Smart Display, a 22-inch high definition LCD display with Android 4.0 built right in.
The VSD220 will list for $399, and availability is expected by the end of October. Like many other so-called all-in-one PCs, the VSD220 offers control of its operating system via two-point touch screen and includes a Webcam and mic, USB ports, an HDMI input, wired and wireless Ethernet, built-in stereo speakers and Bluetooth, and it's controlled via touch and on-screen keyboard. There's no optical drive, keyboard or mouse.
ViewSonic sent a unit to the CRN Test Center for review, and opinions were mixed. Because of its browser, ViewSonic is positioning the Smart Display as a low-cost means of accessing cloud-based applications. And we like the idea of an Android-based all-in-one for setting up kiosks, self-service menus, digital signage, waiting-room entertainment screens and other monofunctional applications. There also are a number of kiosk apps in Google Play that resellers can use to set up browser-based apps that restrict users to a set of boundaries.
Still, the VSD220 is a nice looking unit. Its 21.5-inch, 1,920 x 1,080 LED-lit LCD panel is bright and crisp, offers a 170-degree viewing angle and displays Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich operating system as well as any tablet we've seen. To adjust brightness, contrast, speaker volume and the monitor's other settings, ViewSonic cleverly nestles an OSD control next to Android's on-screen controls for Back, Home and App-switching. We liked this Android-integrated control for its instant responsiveness and intuitive ease of use.