Toshiba Tablet PC brings quality and excitment to their devices
The Toshiba Tablet PC line is very competitive and offers a variety of features worth considering.
The Toshiba Corporation is one of the oldest Japanese companies that have blossomed into a worldwide electronics, electrical equipment and components, as well as information technology industries corporations.
Toshiba was actually founded through a merger of two companies in 1939, one of them was called Tanaka Engineering Works and has manufactured telegraph equipment since 1875, later renamed to Shibaura Engineering Works; and Hakunetsusha, established in 1890 and later renamed into Tokyo Denki, which used to manufacture electric lamps, but continued to add other consumer products to their portfolio.
The merger created the company Tokyo Shibaura Denki, which was nicknamed Toshiba as a short form of the full name. This nickname became more familiar then the original name, so in 1978 the company was officially renamed to Toshiba Corporation. Toshiba nowadays is one of the five leading PC and semi-conductor manufacturers, according to revenue figures.
Toshiba was one of the first display manufacturers to completely abandon cathode ray tube production and just recently has formed a merger of Toshiba Mobile Display Company with Hitachi Displays and Sony Mobile Display Corporation. The tablet division of the Toshiba Corporation is not a very large subsidiary, but affordable tablets with top of the line specifications featuring a household brand name are a novelty and sales have encouraged Toshiba to pursue the Toshiba Tablet PC line more seriously.
What started out with the Toshiba Folio 100 has now expanded and features the Toshiba Thrive line and the Toshiba Excite line of Tablet PCs.
Toshiba Folio 100
Toshiba released the first Toshiba Tablet PC, the Folio 100, barely six months after Apple’s iPad created the new tablet craze, but still labeled it a “portable multimedia tablet”.
It featured the NVIDIA Tegra 250 chip at 1GHz, with 512 MB of memory, 16GB internal storage plus a 16 GB SSD.
Furthermore it had a USB 2.0 connector, an HDMI connector, infrared and docking station ports, card reader for MMC/SD cards for storage expansion and an additional Mini-USB client slot.
It ran on Android 2.2 and did cost around 400 Euros. The glossy 10.1 inch, 16 : 9, 1024 x 600 display did in every possible way fare better than the iPad, save for the design – it did look really ghastly when put next to the highly polished iPad – and the incredible lack of sense by Toshiba to restrict access to Google’s Play apps market.
Needless to say, it was a sales disappointment, despite the incredibly good specifications and performance for that time.
The current budget Toshiba Tablet PC models are available in 7 and 10.1 inches and starting at $379 list price. They did not lose the bulkiness of the Folio 100, but they do look more debonair, still housing all the elaborate and extensive connectivity capabilities.
You can even choose from a variety of color covers, plus another, more powerful camera, has been added for making movies and pictures.
The specs are as follows: LCD multi-touch capacitive screen at 1280 x 800 pixels at 149 ppi, 8, 16 or 32 GB of internal storage, 1 GB RAM, SD card slot with expanding capability up to 32 GB of internal storage, 5 megapixel camera with autofocus, secondary video conferencing and web-talk camera 2 MP NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor at 1 GHz, dual-core, USB 2.0 and mini-USB 2.0, full HDMI port, 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and Adobe Flash support.
The Thrive Toshiba Tablet PC models are powered by Android 3.2 Honeycomb and will be upgradable to the Ice Cream Sandwich soon. Learning from past mistakes, full Google apps support is integrated, including access to the Google Play Store, formerly Android Market.
The very sensible pricing strategy is not unrecognized and is perhaps the main selling point of the still a bit bulky Tablet PC. Additionally, there are several accessories available for the Toshiba Tablet PCs in the Thrive line, like a docking station or the Android optimized wireless keyboard.
While all the connectivity, features, speed and also the improved design do speak for the Thrive series, its market position is rather middle-class, which is fully acknowledged by Toshiba as well. They do have an additional series, just introduced with the first model, but soon to be followed with a full line of products, called EXCITE. Find out why the Toshiba Thrive is thriving…
For 2012, the Toshiba Tablet PC division came up with a new gimmick: Thin. Not only thin, but the thinnest Tablet PCs on the market. Just how thin would the Toshiba Excite tablet need to be in order to earn such a nice moniker?
Exactly 10.1 mm thickness is the current number, as defined by the newly available Toshiba Excite 10 LE, which comes in 16 GB and 32 GB versions. It is outfitted with the Texas Instruments OMAP 4430 dual-core processor, running at 1.2 GHz. It features 1 GB of RAM and just like the predecessors plenty of connectivity with micro-USB, mini-HDMI, Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth 2.1 with A2DP and EDR, but no 3G, which is to be included in forthcoming Excite models.
There is also a micro-SD slot, which allows the upgrade of storage up to 32 GB. The LED backlit capacitive LCD multi-touch screen has 1280 x 800 pixels at 149 ppi density.
It seems that Toshiba really listened to customers’ complaints, this new model, actually labeled Excite AT200 to be exact, is very nicely designed and has a really beautiful magnesium alloy backside. It also has an LED flash for the 5 MP back camera, which can also shoot HD videos at 720p.
The forthcoming Toshiba Tablet PC models in the Excite series will have similar features, only they will run native on Android 4.0, be named Excite 7.7 AT275 (seven point seven inch screen), Excite 10 AT305 (ten point one inch screen) and Excite 13 AT335 (whopping 13.3 inches screen size).
The Corning Gorilla Glass AMOLED screen will have the highest density on the seven inch model (196 ppi), 3G and 4G EDGE are planned, quad-core Tegra 3 at 1.5 GHz will be the processor, but the RAM will remain at 1 GB. As per the official announcement, extensive battery capabilities are being estimated to hold 13 hours of “talk time”.
The weight of the smallest model is expected to be around 380 g, the middle model barely over 1 lbs, and the large model just below 2.2 lbs. It is supposed to be available for purchase in June 2012. The release will hopefully reduce the prices of Thrive models as well, really messing up pricing strategies of comparable competing models. Read more in the Toshiba Excite LE review…