For those of you who keep up with tech news, you'll remember Toshiba
saying something about a new tablet they had in the works way back in
January some time. Well, they've now announced a price, a release
date, technical specifications, and a name: They've christened their
tablet the Toshiba Regza AT300.
Shall we find out what Toshiba's got in store for us?
The silver backing and black trim on this 10.1 inch tablet accentuate one another quite smartly. Further, like many tablets on the market, the outer casing is ergonomically designed to provide ease of use with minimal discomfort. There's not a lot else to say about how the AT300 looks- except that the design on the back of the device looks like the sort of grip surface you'd see on the back of a cell phone. Or maybe it's just me.
Anyway, the AT300 weighs in at around 1.7 pounds, and sits at around 0.67 inches thick.(Technobuffalo) Not a lot of word on how the tablet's screen currently looks, except that it runs at a resolution of 1280x800 and supports HDMI. Pretty standard stuff, really. I suppose we'll have to wait until the tablet releases(or at least until the review copies start shipping out) to see how the graphics hardware holds up. (Engadget)
Toshiba's not pulling any punches with this new tablet. In addition to running the new Android 3.0 Honeycomb platform, The Regza AT300 is going to boast the following technical specifications(From Technobuffalo and Linuxdevices):
- Dual Core Tegra 2 Processor(1 GHz)
- 1 GB RAM
- 16 GB Memory
- Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Support
- 5 MP Rear Camera, 2 MP Front Camera
- USB, mini-USB, HDMI, SD Ports
- Regza Device Support*
- 7 Hour Battery Life*
So right now, you're probably wondering what the big deal is. The Regza AT300 pretty much looks like every other tablet out there, right? Well...yes and no. There are actually a few pretty neat features that distinguish Toshiba's tablet from the others on the market.
The two things you probably noticed first are that it's got an SD port and that it possesses something known as 'Regza Device Support'. The first one's pretty self-explanatory, you can pop an SD card into the AT300 to give yourself a bit of extra memory to store whatever it is you'd have that would take you over 16 gigabytes. Okay, that's pretty cool, but nothing groundbreaking.
Now, the Regza device support...any of you who know anything about Toshiba probably know about their Regza line of products. Toshiba's been pretty hazy on the details, but it's clear that the AT300 Tablet is going to interact with their other Regza products. Just how it'll interact and the limitations of that interaction are currently left to memory. (Technobuffalo)
Finally, the AT300 will apparently feature an interchangeable battery- an innovation that hasn't actually been seen in tablet PCs yet. So, while the battery life is...really nothing special, the ability to carry a secondary battery around with you and pop it in once the first runs out of juice could give the AT300 a nice edge.
And now for the bad news. While Toshiba's set a release date and price for the Regza AT300...that release date is exclusive to Japan. Toshiba's planning on putting this tablet on the Japanese market in June, at a retail price of 60,000 yen. (Around $720.00) (Engadget). They've been completely silent about a North American release. We know that there will be one coming...we just don't know when it is. I'll wager we might be seeing the Regza AT300 hit international shores sometime in August or September.
While this is a nice tablet, the price seems...a little steep for what you get. Unless Toshiba prices their Regza tablet a bit more competitively, the competition might leave it in the dust.
If you read Japanese and want to learn a bit more about the Regza AT300, take a look at Toshiba's Dynabook product information page, located here.