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Toshiba is launching a new 2-in-1 convertible, or a laptop that can be converted into a tablet by swiveling its touchscreen.
After a few generations of these convertibles, the features are getting pretty interesting. The Toshiba Satellite Radius 11 has a two-axis hinge that rotates 360 degrees, so you can position it as a productivity laptop or an after-work movie-viewing tablet. The Windows 8.1 machine has an 11.6-inch touchscreen and it will sell for $330 at retail.
The laptop is one of a growing number of laptop-tablet hybrid machines that can now offer a no-compromise mobile computing experience for a low price. That may sound like marketing spiel, but this machine is a far better deal than the first Windows 8 convertibles that debuted a couple of years ago.
The “flip-and-fold” device can be maneuvered into five positions, each with a different purpose. You can lay it flat in a tabletop mode. You can use it as a laptop or a tablet. It’s easy to set it up as a presentation device, or as a standing viewing screen. The idea is that the lives of mobile professionals are blurring, so that they use a single device for both work and play.
“We see people buying this to get on the web and use it in a variety of ways,” Toshiba marketing director Carrie Cowan told VentureBeat in an interview. “It’s for the performance buyer who can benefit from convertible functionality.”
The machine has a smart-lock feature that disables the keyboard when in tablet mode. The keyboard has contoured, raised tile keys and less key-bounce. The machine is quiet because it has no fans, and it has a high-definition webcam.
The convertible will be available on Oct. 26. It weighs less than three pounds and has a patterned light gold finish. It uses the latest Intel Pentium or Celeron processors, has up to 4 gigabytes of main memory, and comes with either 32 gigabytes of flash memory or a 500 gigabyte hard drive.
“It fits on an airline tray table nicely and you can sit back and watch a movie on it,” Cowan said.
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