Gadgets

Toshiba reveals two laptops and a tablet that bring sub $400 touchscreens to the mainstream

Toshiba Satellite Click

Above: Toshiba Satellite Click

Image Credit: Toshiba
Toshiba Satellite Click

Above: Toshiba Satellite Click

Image Credit: Toshiba

Joining a big tech parade, Toshiba is introducing three new computing devices at the IFA Berlin trade show this week in Germany.

The devices are meant to make it much easier to transition from productivity to play or from a creation-focused laptop to a consumption-focused entertainment device. Two of the three devices will tap Intel’s latest generation of processors codenamed Bay Trail, an Atom family processor which uses Intel’s high-performance, low-power Silvermont architecture. If Intel-based Windows 8 tablets and laptops didn’t take over the world last year, they’re readying another assault this year and Toshiba is one of the vehicles.

In an effort to improve upon last year’s 2-in-1 models, Toshiba is introducing Satellite Click 2-in1 hybrid laptop-tablet. The name is a reference to the clicking sound that happens when you detach the screen from a laptop and turn it into a tablet. The Click uses an Advanced Micro Devices A4 “Temash” processor and a 13.3-inch IPS multitouch screen. It has a full-size keyboard and touchpad. It has about 5 hours as a laptop, and a total of two additional hours with a dock.

“It looks and feels and plays like a tablet should,” said Young Bae, a Toshiba marketing manager, in an interview with VentureBeat. “This brings touchscreens within reach of the mainstream. Consumers are prioritizing sleeker design, even in value products.”

The tablets run the Windows 8 operating system and they come with a bunch of ports for Micro USB 2.0, HDMI, MicroSD and other essentials for a portable. The machine has AMD Radeon 8000 graphics, a 500GB hard drive (built into the removable tablet), 4GB of main memory

The device will be sold at Best Buy and Toshiba Direct in late September.

Toshiba Satellite NB15t

Above: Toshiba Satellite NB15t

Image Credit: Toshiba

Toshiba is also introducing its Satellite NB15t laptop, which it describes as a “clutch style” design, which is like a small woman’s purse. Some computer makers used to describe their “netbooks” as “clutch” models as well, but those stripped-down devices have gone out of fashion. But thanks to a new generation of Intel chips, these laptops are pretty powerful. The Satellite NB15t sports an Intel Celeron N2810 dual-core processor (a Bay Trail M chip) and 500 gigabytes of hard drive storage.

The device is Skype-certified, with a 11.6-inch touch-enabled display that is optimized for Windows 8. The laptop starts at just $379 and it weighs 3.3 pounds. It has HDMI ports, an HD webcam, stereo speakers with DTS, and a silver finish. It will have a five-hour battery life.

The device will sell in November and it will be aimed at students and travelers.

Toshiba Encore

Above: Toshiba Encore

Image Credit: Toshiba

Lastly, Toshiba is taking another stab at Apple with a Windows 8.1 tablet with an eight-inch screen. The Toshiba Encore has a new Intel Atom processor from the upcoming family of Bay Trail chips coming from Intel. It aims to deliver fast, full-screen web browsing, a solid Skype communications experience, and dual microphones.

“We think the timing is right for a mainstream Windows tablet,” Bae said.

The device has a 1,280-by-800 multitouch HFFS display with wide viewing angles. It is just 0.42 inches thick and weighs 16.9 ounces, or just over a pound. It also has an 8 megapixel rear camera and a 2 megapixel front camera, a bunch of sensors, global positioning system navigation, and stereo speakers. Battery life is still being figured out, but that will be about 10 hours.

It will have access to Xbox entertainment services as well as the Xbox SmartGlass app, which will give gamers the ability to monitor their progress in a game via a second-screen experience. The Encore will debut in November for $329.


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