Toshiba To Unveil Tablet, All-In-One PC

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Toshiba will show during International CES a working tablet PC that it plans to ship during the first half of 2011.

The company will also break new ground in 2011 by entering the all-in-one (AIO) PC market in the U.S. in the second half. Toshiba will show a technology demonstration of glasses-free 3D on a laptop, said Phil Osako, Toshiba’s product marketing director of its digital products division.

While the tablet’s details were not fully available at press time, Osako said it will have a 10.1-inch display with 1,200 by 800 resolution. The screen is adaptive and can adjust to different lighting situations.

Toshiba did not nail down a firm price at press time,  but Osako said it will be competitive with Apple’s iPad.

It will use the Android operating system — although Osako did not know which version yet — and the first model will be Wi-Fi only.

The company is likely to market the as-yet-unnamed tablet under a newly created brand.

Toshiba’s market strategy for its tablet will follow what the company did with the netbook category, Osako said. The company is less concerned with hitting the market early than with getting the feature set right, he said.

“Our netbook strategy has done very well, giving us about a 17 percent share in the U.S.” he said.

Toshiba has previously shipped a convertible tablet PC into several vertical markets. These have a display that pivots so it can be used either as a traditional laptop or as a touchscreen tablet.

The new tablets other features include an Nvidia Tegra 2 processor, two webcams, stereo speakers, USB, HDMI port and a removable battery with seven hours of power. It will come with a rubberized, textured casing available in multiple colors. The amount of onboard storage has not been set.

Toshiba’s next new foray into the United States will center on the AIO PC category. The company currently sells AIOs in Japan, Osako said, and the American market is now ready.

The AIO would be positioned as a PC tower replacement, giving the user a centralized, yet small-footprint, central computer with large amounts of storage. A touchscreen is one possible feature due to the technology is popular in the U.S., but nothing is planned right now.

General specifications, pricing and an exact ship date were not available.

The glasses-free 3D laptop will be on display as a technology demonstration. Plans are to ship a retail model later in the year, Osako said.

The technology uses the webcam to detect the position of the viewer’s eyes and then adjust the display to play when they are properly situated. The screen will play the movie in 2D mode until it is set and then jump to 3D mode. If the person’s eyes move or go out of range of the webcam, the video reverts to 2D.

The display also has the ability to play 3D in one portion, while the remainder shows a normal desktop.

The 3D image is created on a 120Mhz display that intersperses a left and right image with each line.


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