Feeds

Toshiba unveils ARM, Nvidia-based smartbook

The way netbooks should be?

The essential guide to IT transformation

Hands On Toshiba's dual-screen Libretto palmtop may be a gimmick, but its AC100 smartbook, also announced today, is the business.

Described as a "Mobile Internet Device", the AC100 is really a netbook - Toshiba is simply avoiding the word because its new, skinny boy is based on ARM chippery rather than Intel's Atom platform.

Toshiba Libretto AC100

The ARM core in question is a dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 built inside an Nvidia Tegra 250 system-on-a-chip operating at 1GHz and running Android 2.1 with a UI tweaked by Toshiba to add a handy side-scrolling launch bar-cum-dock along the bottom of the screen.

The screen is a netbook-size 10.1in, 1024 x 600 job, but Toshiba has missed a trick by not making a touch-sensitive one. Sure, you're not going to want to drag icons around with your finger, but Android's UI - especially with Toshiba's launcher - suits a tap-to-lauch action.

Toshiba Libretto AC100

It would certainly be quicker than reaching down to the touchpad to steer the mouse pointer over to the icon, which is what you have to do here. It quickly makes you realise why Apple's iOS doesn't have a pointer.

The AC100 has 512MB of DDR 2 memory on board and an 8GB SSD - you work in the cloud, see? - but there's a Micro SD slot if you need more local storage.

Toshiba Libretto AC100

Some models will contain an HSDPA 3G adaptor, but all will have 802.11n Wi-Fi on board, plus USB and - since the Tegra can handle HD content with ease - and HDMI output.

The whole thing is a comfortable-to-carry 870g and measures 262 x 190 x 14-21mm, though it tapers to a lot less than that at the front edge.

As skinny as it is, the AC100 has battery enough for eight hours' operation, Toshiba claimed, and will last for seven days on standby.

Toshiba Libretto AC100

Thin, lightweight and designed for media consumption and communications rather than productivity - though DataViz Documents-to-Go is bundled so you can edit spreadsheets if that's your thing - this is the arguably the best keyboard-equipped iPad alternative yet.

Toshiba was again cagey on the AC100's price, preferring not to say for now. Hopefully, though, we won't be shocked when the smartbook goes on sale in August. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Apple's iWatch? They cannae do it ... they don't have the POWER
Analyst predicts fanbois will have to wait until next year
AMD unveils 'single purpose' graphics card for PC gamers and NO ONE else
Chip maker claims the Radeon R9 285 is 'best in its class'
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Apple to build WORLD'S BIGGEST iStore in Dubai
It's not the size of your shiny-shiny...
Just in case? Unverified 'supersize me' iPhone 6 pics in sneak leak peek
Is bigger necessarily better for the fruity firm's flagship phone?
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?