HP DreamScreen: Not Your Grandma's Digital Picture Frame

Fancy "connected screens" fill a niche below tablet PCs

By Charlie White
|  Thursday, Sep 17, 2009  |  Updated 10:30 AM PDT
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HP DreamScreen: Not Your Grandma's Digital Picture Frame

HP just dreamed up a fancy batch of digital picture frames, and it's calling them DreamScreens. Connected to the world via Wi-Fi or Ethernet, these swank-looking screens are all decked out in shiny piano black with flush widescreen fronts.

They're essentially souped-up, extra large 800x480 digital picture frames — the DreamScreen 100 ($250) has a 10.2-inch screen and the DreamScreen 130 ($300) has a 13.3-inch screen.

The specs place them at the higher end of connected digital picture frames; in what HP calls "a new category of connected screens." The 15:9 units are both packing 2GB of built-in memory, and if that's not enough, you can hook up a USB drive or flash card for more space.

Because they're connected to the Internet, they'll let you stream music using Pandora, our favorite free customized music streaming service. Beyond that, HP rolls out a new service for the DreamScreen it calls SmartRadio, aggregating more than 10,000 Internet radio stations for your listening pleasure.

DreamScreen can play video, audio, and photos (see the specs after the jump for file formats). If you get tired of looking at your own photos, look at everyone else's on Facebook or Snapfish. Aiming to please, there's an alarm clock inside that'll be more than happy to show you a five-day forecast at a glance. It's not a touchscreen, and that's good -- you wouldn't want to get your greasy fingerprints all over this beauty, but it is controlled by a remote control or touch controls that are only visible when you touch the frame.

Yeah, this is one fancy picture frame. The DreamScreen 100 is available today, but you'll have to wait until October 11 for the bigger model 130.

For more gadget news, check out DVICE.com.

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