2 min read

Acer T231H touchscreen monitor

It's very nice to look at, but if you want to touch it you'd better be running Windows 7

Monitor technology has really come a long way over the years, offering increasingly clear, crisp images in ever slimmer, lighter form factors. And the T231H from Acer is no exception.

I’ve enjoyed having this 23” LCD widescreen monitor on my desk for the past few weeks. My eyes are feeling less fatigued than with past monitors, which is nice. The display offers a maximum resolution of 1920 x 1080 and a 16:9 aspect ratio for full high definition video, which was useful for catching up on episodes of The Daily Show (on my lunch break, of course).

It has a 60 Hz refresh rate and is wall mountable, an option I’d exercise if it was staying in my cubicle on a more permanent basis, freeing up even more desktop real estate. It’s a svelte 5.94 kg, and measures 395mm by 563 mm by 82 mm, and you have the option of connecting by DVI, HDMI or VGA. I thought the lack of USB ports was a curious oversight, as this has become a more common feature on modern monitors. There are built-in speakers that I didn’t test.

There’s one more crucial feature I wasn’t able to test, though: the touch capability. This required a separate software installation, and when I was able to get our IT team in to do the install (thanks Windows user account control!) we quickly learned it wasn’t going to work, because my work PC is running Windows Vista.

I checked the monitor box, and it does contain a logo saying “compatible with Windows 7.” But it doesn’t add “and nothing else.” This is a significant oversight, in my opinion. Windows 7 adoption is far from ubiquitous, particularly in the enterprise but in the consumer space as well. I realize Windows 7 added a lot more functionality around touch, but if you’re not going to support the functionality for XP or Vista, which are still in pretty wide use (well, XP is anyway) a heads-up would be appreciated if you don’t want a lot of frustrated people returning monitors to their local retailer (I trust a good channel partner would give their clients the news before making the buy).

So I can’t give this monitor the full thumbs-up (or any other fingers) it might deserve, because of the confusion on touch capability. Truth be told, I’m a bit of a desktop touch skeptic myself. But if its touch is as good as the rest of the monitor, and you run Windows 7, the T231H is probably a good bet for the touch converts among us. Even if I have to keep my fingers off.

Follow Jeff Jedras on Twitter: @JeffJedrasCDN.