Crawford Del Prete, executive vice president of global research at IDC, said: "I think the price point is getting compelling for a premium PC. I think it would be even more attractive if they could get it under a thousand."
He pointed out, however, the risks HP was taking by making large investments in an unproven market.
"It requires a set of marketing expertise and it requires a significant amount of investment," he added. "An Apple or someone else could do this but it's not for the faint of heart, it's not for people who don't want to invest in the product."
HP's touchscreen technology works on top of Microsoft's Vista operating system, and product managers said there were no current plans to develop versions for other operating systems, such as open-source Linux.
HP's launch came a day after Apple announced a new version of its ground-breaking iPhone, the original version of which sparked intense interest in touchscreens and a host of imitators.
IDC's del Prete said: "I don't think Apple's impact can be underestimated."
Rob Enderle, chief analyst with technology research firm the Enderle Group, said HP's products launched on Tuesday, which include 17 new notebooks and a professional display monitor that can show a billion colors, could put it out of rivals' reach.
"Todd Bradley took a unit that many thought was a liability to HP and turned it into one of HP's top performers and into segment leadership ... to a point where it may not be possible for a competitor to catch it," he said.
The new TouchSmart PCs will launch in countries including the United States, Japan, China, India and Britain on July 13. The models sold in Europe will be about half as expensive again as their U.S counterparts, partly due to extra features.
Del Prete said the HP TouchSmart could appeal to social groups such as families or students sharing an apartment who wanted a PC that could also double as a group messageboard or second television set.
When invited to compare the touchscreen interface with the early days of PCs, when users unfamiliar with using a computer mouse would commonly jab at the monitor with a fingertip, del Prete said: "Now you point at the screen and something happens."