icrosoft indicated the intended market for its Surface computer-in-a-table when it signed a manufacturer to distribute it: International Game Technology. Microsoft announced the computer at a recent Wall Street Journal technology conference, and said that said Harrah's Entertainment, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide and T-Mobile also will put the computer to use.
The most radical thing about Microsoft's new offering is its use of an infrared touch-screen interface, instead of the usual resistive or capacitive touch-sensitive technologies, according to Ian Lao, senior analyst at In-Stat.
The IR screen will be immune to damage from spilled drinks and food, he said. Infrared screens are the technology of choice for the military, due to their durability. The surface tabletop is acrylic.
"We think IGT could see the device fitting into the company's server-based gaming platform," Bear Stearns gaming analyst Joe Greff said.