The touchscreen coffee table.
(Business 2.0 Magazine ) -- What if you could embed newspapers - and their ads - right into the tables where people sip their lattes? That's the idea behind TableTouch, a San Francisco startup that sells a coffee table with a built-in, Wi-Fi-enabled touchscreen and software that lets you browse the latest news stories with your fingers.
The company teamed up with the San Francisco Chronicle for content and is testing the $4,500 tables in Tully's coffee shops in the Bay Area. With built-in Bluetooth, the tables can even send audio to your headset. "You could have the table read the news to you with your eyes closed," says TableTouch founder and CTO John Calder. He aims to put 1,000 tables in coffee shops, airports, and bars in the next year, and says his five-year-old company is looking at $10 million a year in revenue. That puts him toe-to-toe with Microsoft, which will launch its own touchscreen coffee table, the much-hyped Surface, later this year. But the market is growing so fast, says iSuppli senior analyst Jennifer Colegrove, that "there's room for lots of new companies."To send a letter to the editor about this story, click here.