We invited eight tech-savvy bloggers to review the HP ENVY 23 TouchSmartAll-in-One PC during the holiday season to see if the technology could keep up with their busy lifestyles, help them connect with out-of-town relatives, and ultimately bring their family closer together during this important time of year. As the program comes to a close, we decided to ask the participants about their experiences—what they liked, didn’t like, favorite games and apps—and if they created any new traditions with their desktop this year.
What games do the kids like best? We heard everything from Polar Bowler, Angry Birds Star Wars Edition and Club Penguin to Fresh Paint and MathBlast. The bloggers explored countries using Google Earth on the 23-inch edge-to-edge glass screen, and learned how to video chat with the built-in TrueVision WebCam with friends in the United Kingdom to cousins in Pennsylvania. All their experiences were different, but we discovered a common theme—from movies, crafts, games and playlists—the desktop helped to create more family time together.
What makes the ENVY 23 TouchSmart PC “perfect for the whole family” you ask? Here’s what they had to say...
Q: How does the ENVY TouchSmart AiO bring the family closer together?
A: We love using the ENVY TouchSmart all-in-one to stay connected with long distance relatives including my children's grandparents. We live in Cleveland and they live in Michigan. We use the ENVY to connect on Skype where they can video chat with each other and through the Google Hangouts Scoot & Doodle App where they can play tic-tac-toe, hangman, and draw pictures together. We also love displaying all of our family photos as the screen saver on the ENVY. We use the Windows Live Gallery photo screen saver and it shows our pictures and videos which is a great way for my children to recall memories of time spent with their grandparents. (Tesa Nicolanti, 2Wired2Tired.com)
Q: How was the set up with the HP ENVY 23 TouchSmart, and how long did it really take? A: The set-up was the easiest I've done with a PC. It literally took 3 minutes to unbox and less than a minute to plugin and start up. (Cat Davis, FoodFamilyFinds.com)
Q: What room did you choose to put the ENVY all-in-one? Has it become a central part of the space?
A: We decided to put the ENVY in our kitchen. Our kitchen is the hub of our home, so we wanted to make sure it was the pulse of that hub. We have everyone's calendar, email and schedules right on it and every single morning, I log in and see what the day has to bring! (Audrey McLelland, MomGenerations.com)
A: We put the computer in our living room so it can be used by everyone and monitored easily when the kids are using it. (Cat Davis, FoodFamilyFinds.com)
Q: Finish this sentence. My favorite thing about the ENVY 23 TouchSmart All-in-One is _______.
A: How stylish it looks in our home. Makes it easy for me to put it in a place where it is seen by all and used by all. (Michele McGraw, ScrapsofMyGeekLife.com)
Q: How have your family’s technology needs changed over the years?
A: Our needs have increased. We are always online these days. Especially as a blogger, I'm always writing posts, using social media, answering emails etc. My husband uses email often for his work as well and my children have come to learn about electronics and they are now a big part of their lives. (Tesa Nicolanti, 2Wired2Tired.com)
Q: What surprised you the most about the HP ENVY 23 AiO?
A: The image quality and how bright and colorful everything looks. I also didn’t realize that it played Blu-ray discs prior to receiving it. That was a great surprise because many of the movies we have are only on Blu-ray. (Kimberly Vetrano, SheScribes.com)
Q: What new holiday traditions did the ENVY 23 All-in-One help to create?
A: You're not going to believe this! I have a video to prove it, so you'll get a kick out of it. We couldn't find our book "Twas the Night before Christmas" this year. So right before bedtime, all the boys gathering around the ENVY and Matt read it to them from there. It was adorable and cute and so "new age!" (Audrey McLelland, MomGenerations.com)
A: We made a fun Christmas card insert with it using FreshPaint. I put in a photo of the kids, gave it a green background, and in red letters wrote a note and signed it. We decorated it by adding Christmas trees and more. It came out really cute! (Tesa Nicolanti, 2Wired2Tired.com)
Q: What’s the best playlist you’ve created with Beats Audio?
A: I created a Yoga playlist. I have a lot of songs that are just soothing and I like to have my own music playing when I do my Yoga videos. (Michele McGraw, ScrapsofMyGeekLife.com)
Q: How often does your child need to use a desktop for school-related activities?
A: My kids need the computer to finish homework assignments, do research and print out projects on a weekly basis. (Kimberly Vetrano, SheScribes.com)
Q: Do you let the kids play games on the PC? Do you enforce a time limit? A: The kids have all been using the Wild Coins to play Polar Bowler in the game app. Each child gets 30 minutes of game time per day. (Cat Davis, FoodFamilyFinds.com)
A very big and very special thanks to all the bloggers that participated in the HP Family Time program! To follow their conversation and learn more about the program, check out the #HPFamilyTime conversation on Twitter, and please join me and these amazing bloggers in a Microsoft tech chat on Twitter (#winchat) on Tuesday, February 5 at noon Pacific Time.