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Best small (7-inch) Android tablets available today

Winter is coming, and with it, comes possibly the most fruitful time of the year for both electronics retailers and tech consumers. Yes, you can find compelling promotions on Android gear from January to December nowadays, as competition heats up, manufacturer profits shrink, and upgrade cycles are shortened.

7 inch tablet

But the best deals on smartphones, tablets, wearables and everything in between still allow you to spend the holidays without worrying the bank accounts are empty, or you’ve been left behind by the latest wave of fall releases.

Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, they’re all nigh, and while technically the onslaught of discounts isn’t in effect yet, some of the best small Android tablets can be had for historically low prices. Is it likely they’ll drop any further? Hard to imagine, especially as far the first few models on our list of the best 7-inch tablets around are concerned:

Amazon Fire 7 – $49.99

Fire 7

Is this the world’s best 7 inch tablet at the moment? Hardly. But it’s easily the cheapest, and if you buy five units, the sixth comes free. As always, Amazon doesn’t care about profit margins on hardware sales, aiming instead to draw as many people as possible away from Google apps, and hooked on their own software ecosystem.

That said, the Fire OS 5 Android “fork” is much less intrusive than its predecessors, and most important of all, microSD storage expansion is now permitted. Well, it should really be compulsory on slates with just 8 gigs of internal space, even if the 1,024 x 600 pix res screen will make you think twice before trying to consume or hoard video content.

Toshiba Excite Go – $75

Toshiba Excite Go

The main (only?) selling point of this decrepit KitKat-running gadget has been suppressed by Amazon’s newest ultra-low-cost effort, so Toshiba may as well retire the Excite Go. Unless you absolutely need to have Intel inside every device you own.

Lenovo Tab 2 A7 – $80

Lenovo Tab 2 A7

Still no Lollipop update? Afraid not, though it’s planned, and could make its way over-the-air any day now. On the plus side, the 8-hour advertised battery life sounds pretty good, and it’s all thanks to a frugal but respectably zippy quad-core 1.3 GHz MediaTek SoC.

The 1,024 x 600 display also plays its part in conserving energy, albeit it’s not necessarily a strong suit of the A7.

BLU Touchbook G7 – $88 GSM unlocked

BLU Touchbook G7

SIM-free phone specialist BLU hasn’t produced a lot of tablets so far, and this G7’s marketing is almost nonexistent, despite only a few months having passed since its launch. Then again, anyone would be ashamed to aggressively promote a gizmo featuring 512 MB RAM, 4 GB ROM, a dual-core MediaTek chip, and 3,000 mAh (!!!) battery in late 2015.

That’s not a tablet, it’s a toy, and the best you can hope to get is a decent e-book reading experience. Relatively smooth web browsing, with a couple of tabs open max, too. Oh, and 3G voice call placing and receiving.

Acer Iconia One 7 B1 – $90

Acer Iconia One 7 B1

Released with pre-loaded Jelly Bean, brought up to KitKat recently, and unlikely to ever score a Lollipop makeover, the B1-730HD is at least 720p-capable, not to mention it can accommodate 16 gigs of data locally.

Sure, microSD cards aren’t overly expensive, but if you’re looking to spend less than a Benjamin on a nice Christmas gift for a loved one, it’s best to keep the slot empty. Too bad the screen bezels are, well, horrible. What’s that, a 50 percent display-to-body ratio? Come on, Acer, you can do better than that!

Asus ZenPad Z170C – $94

Asus ZenPad 7

One of the newest best small Android tablets available on Amazon, this obviously runs Lollipop off the bat (version 5.0), rocks much slimmer borders, the same spacious 16 GB ROM, but a non-HD 1,024 x 600 IPS panel.

Compromises were mandatory to attain a premium design, with ergonomic rounded edges, a fashionable leather back pattern, polished metallic frame, and 8.4 mm profile. Somehow, the 7-inch ZenPad also promises 8 hours of endurance on a single charge, at a measly 265 grams weight, which is probably unfeasible in real life.

LG G Pad 7.0 – $105 AT&T GSM unlocked; $80 Wi-Fi only

lg-g-pad-7.0

Can’t decide between the older, pricier, KitKat-stuck but cellular-enabled model, and the newer, cheaper, Lollipop-boasting but Wi-Fi-limited configuration? We reckon the former is the smarter buy overall, with LTE speeds, Snapdragon 400 power, 16 GB internal storage, and a 5 MP rear camera.

The latter isn’t half bad either, in spite of its missing LTE modem, adopting a Snapdragon 410 processor that should help with autonomy.

Amazon Fire HD 7 – $130

Fire HD 7

Justifying the existence of this OG isn’t easy at almost three times the introductory price of the 2015 Fire 7, particularly sans microSD support, and with an older, uglier, clunkier Fire OS 4 UI. Why is the Fire HD 7 on our list of best current small tablets then?

As the moniker suggests, the display sports HD resolution (1,280 x 800 pixels), and furthermore, you get 1.5 GHz quad-core punch, Dolby Audio stereo sound, 8-hour battery, and a slightly more robust build.

Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 – $143

Galaxy Tab 4 7.0

Honestly, the sole reason this made the cut is the brand name on it, and the hope it’ll be discounted come Black Friday. $100 would likely be a fair price to pay for Android 4.4 software with TouchWiz atop, a 1,280 x 800 TFT screen, thin bezels, 8 GB flash memory, 1 GB RAM, 3 and 1.3 MP cams, microSD capabilities, a quad-core Marvell SoC, and all the connectivity bare necessities.

Asus/Google Nexus 7 2013 – starting at $149

Nexus 7 2013

It says a lot about the market’s evolution, or rather stagnation, that a two-and-a-half-year-old earns a well-deserved top ten spot, not having to resort to extreme price cuts… yet, and running a newer Android iteration than every single one of its rivals.

Yes, Marshmallow goodies are available OTA for this OG beast, which remains a stunner in the display res department, with 1,920 x 1,200 pixels, and a multitasking champ, courtesy of 2 onboard gigs of random-access memory.

Toshiba refreshes Chromebook 2 with backlit keyboard and an upgraded processor

Toshiba Chromebook 2

Toshiba Chromebook 2

Are you looking to invest in a #Chromebook? Well #Toshiba has you covered with its new and upgraded model of the #Chromebook2 which comes with an enhanced Intel CPU as well as a new backlit keyboard, letting you type even in darkness.

There are two models on offer now, one with an Intel Core i3 processor and the other with the Intel Celeron processor. These will set you back by $329.99 and $429.99 respectively.

In addition to the aforementioned features, the Toshiba Chromebook 2 also has Skullcandy tuned speakers on board, which should make it a decent offering for multimedia enthusiasts.

The device retains the 13.3 inch Full HD display from the original Chromebook 2, so you’re getting a more than decent hardware for a reasonable price here. The USB 3.0 port is available as well.

The two Chromebooks can be bought from Toshiba’s own website as well as a handful of other participating retailers starting October.

Source: Toshiba

Via: Android Central

Best sub-$150 Android tablets available today (May 2015 edition)

Although we haven’t gone through an entire “upgrade cycle” since July 2014, when we first rounded up your top ultra-affordable Android tablet options, the seven-name list from ten months ago feels dated enough.

150 dollars

It’s time we revisited and revised it therefore, expanding the “magnificent seven” to a “grandiose ten”, as the market greatly diversified and grew in size bolstered by a free fall of premium, extravagantly priced models, iPads included.

As “traditional” PCs, particularly laptops and mini-laptops, slowly but steadily recover their mainstream charm, the demand for not-very-compact, bulky yet unproductive 10-inch+ slates dwindles. Meanwhile, 7 and 8 inchers need crystal-clear distinguishing features and functions to survive. Namely, extreme affordability and respectable bang for buck.

Android shopping

Without further ado, we give you the world’s best sub-$150 Android tablets widely available stateside today, ordered by their current Amazon price tags:

Fire HD 7 – $139 with special offers and 8 GB storage

One of the newest entries in this competitive niche, the 800p 7-inch Fire isn’t exactly dirt-cheap. Not if you want to “locally” hoard a few movies and a couple of gigs of music, with the 16 GB non-microSD-supporting configuration starting at $159.

Fire HD 7

Another major flaw is Amazon’s awkward Android fork, devoid of all Google services and apps. On the plus side, you get a surprisingly fast quad-core processor clocked at up to 1.5 GHz and decent 8-hour battery.

Acer Iconia One 8 B1-810 – $135

Larger than most of our low-cost contenders, at 8 inches, the Iconia One 8 is hardly a looker, but it’s reasonably slim and light, weighing 12 ounces while measuring 0.33 inches in depth. 16 GB internal storage is really the best you can hope for so close to a Benjamin, and the 5 MP rear-facing camera should produce above-average stills.

Acer Iconia One 8

Of course, KitKat runs the software show, and a Lollipop update is but a distant dream. Also, the quad-core 1.33 GHz Intel Atom Z3735G doesn’t quite qualify as a powerhouse. Even by mid-range standards.

Asus MeMo Pad 7 ME176CX – $125

Our first returning title challenger from last year lost some of its pizazz lately, sticking to the age-old KitKat guns when so many rookies retaliate with Lollipop bombs. At the end of the day however, the HD 7 incher doesn’t show its advanced age, perhaps needing an additional $25 or so trim to clear up remaining stocks once and for all.

Asus ME176CX

Can you imagine, scoring a 16 GB tab with quad-core Intel Atom inside, 1 GB RAM and 8-hour juice in exchange for a measly Benjamin?

LG G Pad 7.0 – $122 LTE unlocked; $135 international Wi-Fi-only; $100 and up at AT&T

Did anybody say Lollipop? Ah, yes, the smallest G Pad to date delivers Android 5.0 goodies, at least “internationally”, whereas the US AT&T-usable cellular version is so inexpensive, you’ll forget it’s still on 4.4.

LG G Pad 7.0

Other fortes? Well, the 1,280 x 800 pix res panel is sharp albeit it’s beginning to feel like a given, and the quad-core 1.2 GHz Snapdragon 400 chip should easily outpace previous-generation Atoms.

Dell Venue 8 – $119

Once upon a time up for grabs at $200, the “newest version” of Dell’s entry-level Venue 8 (read sans 3D camera gimmicks) takes the cake with a vibrant 1,920 x 1,200 display. It’s as simple as this – if you’re looking for the cheapest on-the-go Netflix streamer, look no more.

Dell Venue 8

Otherwise, the aging 8 incher is not without its share of weak points: a humble dual-core Intel Atom Z3480 SoC, Android 4.4, humdrum design.

Dell Venue 7 – $119

Dell Venue 7

Why in the world would a sane person pay the same amount of cash on a 7-inch HD Dell Venue as the Full HD 8 incher? It boggles the mind, which is why we’re ready to bet the Venue 7 will soon drop to $100. Maybe less. You just wait and see.

Lenovo Tab 2 A7-30 – $99.99

Aw yeah, now we’re talking. Welcome to the sweet, sweet land of sub-$100 Android gear. No contractual obligations, no strings attached. Just a bunch of compromises and sacrifices. For instance, flash memory here caps off at 8 gigs, so besides the pre-loaded Android 4.4 OS, you almost can’t store a thing sans bringing in a microSD card.

Lenovo A7-30

At least you’re allowed to add external space in the mix, and the “enhanced” Dolby audio system is certainly a nice surprise. So is the impending Lollipop makeover, respectable quad-core 1.3 GHz MediaTek CPU and 8-hour battery life. Too bad we can’t say the same about the cringe worthy 1,024 x 600 pix res screen.

Amazon Fire HD 6 – $99

Fire HD 6

Closed ecosystem, tiny footprint, no microSD, mono speaker, crappy dual cameras, chunky profile. Why bother then with the world’s only non-voice-call-enabled 6 incher? For one thing, you get a crisp 252 ppi display. Then there’s that 1.5 GHz quad-core processor also found inside the Fire HD 7. Autonomy is fairly impressive too, all things considered, at “8 hours of mixed use.”

Finally, unlimited cloud storage for Amazon content is clearly nothing to sneeze at.

Toshiba Excite Go – $87

Well, hello there, our old, remarkably unpretentious friend! It’s good to see you around a whole year after your formal introduction. Cheaper than ever before, no less. If only you’d make the jump to Lollipop already, and somehow improve your shoddy screen resolution.

Toshiba Excite Go

On the bright side, quad-core Intel Atom power remains a key selling point at a fraction of the price of a Nexus 9 keyboard. Just the keyboard, you understand?

Asus MeMo Pad 7 ME170CX – $80

Don’t ever die on us, sweet KitKat-based, 16 GB storage-packing prince. Yes, you’re decrepit in more ways than one, and deeply flawed, what with your 1,024 x 600 WSVGA panel, dual-core 1.2 GHz Intel chipset, 2 MP rear camera, VGA front shooter and 6-hour or so pacemaker.

Asus ME170CX

But you’re cheaper than a first-gen Moto E, yet can accommodate a good dozen of semi-high-quality movies for when there’s no room for the 15-inch notebook in our travel knapsack. Europe, here we come!

Best Google Chromebooks money can buy in July 2014

I remember it as if it were yesterday. Perhaps anticipating the imminent fall of netbooks, Google envisioned a different type of inexpensive, compact laptops called Chromebooks in 2011. Highly reliant on the web, these would be initially berated and laughed out of the then competitive PC stage.

Chromebook

But it’s not like Big G to give up a fight so easily, and despite the continuous dip in popularity of traditional computers and the rise of the tablet, Chromebooks stuck around, to the utter dismay of the class’ many critics.

Acer and Samsung, which were the category’s curtain raisers, soon got reinforcements via Lenovo, HP and, most recently, Dell, Toshiba and Asus. Together, these PC veterans could have probably turned any flop into a smash hit.

Chromebooks

But somewhere along the way, Chromebooks stopped being regarded as lemons, and the names of manufacturers played only a minor role in the shift. Yes, Chrome OS-running laptops are still limited in many ways, and greatly depend on a steady network connection. But how is that any different from Android tablets?

Besides, the stellar balance of portability, speed and outstanding battery life can make many flaws go away. Without further ado, let’s explore the best no-longer-dark-horse Chromebook options around:

7. Samsung Chromebook 2 11.6 inch – $299

Available in “jet black” and “classic white”, Samsung’s smaller Series 3 follow-up is quite the looker, dazzling with a faux leather back reminiscent of the Galaxy Note 3 phablet. Unfortunately, that, and the whopping on-board 4 GB RAM, are the 11 incher’s only strong suits, while extravagant pricing, a modest solid-state drive and especially humble Exynos 5 Octa chip tip the balance in favor of weaknesses.

Samsung Chromebook 2 11

Don’t get me wrong, the Chromebook 2 is no pushover. It’s just that it can’t keep up with Haswell-powered beasts. And at 300 bucks, it really should.

6. Lenovo IdeaPad N20P – $342.99

There’s nothing wrong in swimming against the tide and trying to be original in a class that seems to encourage uniformity. But different doesn’t always equal better. Like Samsung’s Chromebook 2, Lenovo’s IdeaPad N20P has one, two fortes tops and a bundle of weak spots.

Lenovo IdeaPad N20P

The sole Chromebook that can bend over and be used as a tablet in addition to a mini-laptop, the N20P also comes with a one-of-a-kind ergonomic AccuType keyboard. But at the end of the day, the $342 price is too damn high. And the 2 GB RAM/16 GB SSD configuration too damn lackluster.

5. Samsung Chromebook 2 13 inch – $398

Larger than the Chromebook 2 11, slightly beefier and rocking a stunning 1,920 x 1,080 pixels resolution (read Full HD) display, the Chromebook 2 13 is ultimately crippled by the same things that keep the 11 incher at a considerable distance from the podium.

Samsung Chromebook 2 13

Look, we appreciate any effort that escapes the conventional and particularly those that try to revolutionize, Samsung. But you can’t just charge 400 clams for an Exynos 5 Chromebook. It’s laggier than cheaper models from the competition, the autonomy is not so impressive, and an outstanding screen doesn’t a solid mini-notebook make.

4. HP Chromebook 11 – $199.99

Alright, now we’re getting somewhere. Sure, HP’s little guy is even slower than Samsung Chromebooks, packing an aging, low-cost, low-end Exynos 5250 Dual processor. And the 6-hour battery life is horrendous by Chromebook standards.

HP Chromebook 11

But at least HP acknowledges this machine is deeply flawed, and aims it squarely at a stingy audience unwilling to cough up north of $250 for a Windows or Mac backup. Sorry, Google, you’re not quite there to replace Windows PCs or Macs, but you can back them up.

Anyhoo, the HP Chromebook 11 is the cheapest Chrome OS contraption around, and all things considered, it doesn’t look half bad, tipping the scales at 2.3 pounds and measuring 0.69 inches in thickness.

3. Toshiba CB35 – $289

This affordable 13 incher is basically the definition of a standard Chromebook. Nothing really makes it stand out, yet nothing knocks it down either. Granted, Toshiba claims it’s capable of “epic” 9-hour battery life, but in reality, that’s closer to 8 hours, which is standard for Intel Celeron Haswell Chromebooks.

Toshiba CB35

The 2 GB RAM is, in lack of a better word, also standard, and so is the 16 GB SSD. Sure, 32 GB of built-in storage space would have been much cooler, but it would have probably added $50 or so on top of the retail value, and the whole ensemble’s value would have dropped.

As things stand, the CB35 looks like a classic, safe choice. Probably the safest.

2. HP Chromebook 14 – $289.99

Another standard option hardware-wise, the HP Chromebook 14 sticks out courtesy of, well, a hefty 14-inch panel and bold chromatic palette, with snow white, ocean turquoise and peach coral replacing the bland grey and black paint jobs.

HP Chromebook 14

Let’s point out though that the whitey is $290, the peach coral model $305 and the turquoise, hold on to your hats, costs $350. For $290, HP offers more than enough, i.e. a classic Intel Celeron 2955U Haswell chip, 2 GB RAM and 16 GB SSD, plus three USB ports (one of which is 3.0), an HDMI connector and 720p webcam.

Clearly, the HP Chromebook 14 is one of the better Chromebooks productivity-wise, although the large display does come with one major downside, namely sub-par ppi. I’m too afraid to even crunch the numbers. 1,366 x 768 pixels on 14 inches of mediocre glass. Yuck.

1. Acer C720P – $260.38

And the winner is… Acer? Now that’s surprising. Or is it? Well, the Taiwanese have been on board the Chromebook ship from the very beginning, so in a way, it makes sense they figured out the formula for success the first.

Acer C720P

Which is simple, really. Great battery + plenty of connectivity options and ports + a spacious SSD + decently punchy, uber-frugal CPU = hit. Oh, and let’s not forget affordability. And an unexpected wow factor, i.e. a touch-enabled screen. Make that two, as you also get really nice stereo speakers with the C720P. Check and mate, Samsung.

Best sub-$150 Android tablets available today (July 2014 edition)

A whole lot can change in the shifty tech décor in the space of nine months. Heck, even one month sometimes makes a world of difference. Take last month. Lenovo rolled out a slew of A-series budget-conscious slates, HP and Toshiba one-upped each other with the dirt-cheap 7 Plus and Excite Go, and Asus refreshed the increasingly successful MeMo Pad family.

Android shopping bag

Just like that, we got half a dozen of brand new contenders at the low-cost, lightweight crown, and in case our little listicle from back October 2013 wasn’t dated enough, all these exciting releases prompted an immediate update.

Since only one of the fresh title candidates fits the old budget though, we’ve decided to supplement it with 50 bucks. After all, you need to keep up with technological progress, and often, that means ponying up a bit of extra dough. Not a lot. Clearly, $150 is no small fortune.

Android money

Besides, our latest top picks for the best affordable Android tablets around still include a $100, $110 and $120 slab, so if $150 is too steep for your monthly spending plan, you’ve got options. Without further ado, here they all are:

7. Amazon Kindle Fire HD 7

I can just about hear Amazon admirers boiling with rage at Fire HD’s “offensive” number seven ranking, but you should actually take it as a compliment. A most flattering compliment, given the 7 incher’s advanced age. Mind you, four of its six rivals are barely a month old.

Kindle-Fire-HD-7

Meanwhile, the Fire HD is nearly ready to blow out its birthday candles for the second time. So yeah, it’s amazing it made the charts, but not at all surprising looking at some of its specs: 1,280 x 800 pix res IPS LCD screen, 1 GB RAM, 10-hour battery life (in “mixed” use). Too bad about its decrepit TI OMAP chip, microSD absence and clunky OS.

6. HP 7 Plus

Our sole sub-$100 contender offers exactly the kind of humble features we’ve come to expect from sub-$100 tablets. But hey, it’s one lousy Benjamin, so don’t even think of complaining about the laggy quad-core 1 GHz Allwinner CPU, crappy 1,024 x 600 pixels resolution display, painful 2 MP camera or minuscule 2,800 mAh battery.

hp-7-plus

If you really want something to bitch about, I guess the pre-loaded aging copy of Android 4.2 Jelly Bean best fits the description. On the bright side, HP discounted the low-ender to $84.99 for a second there, so similar deals are likely in the cards for the near future.

5. Lenovo IdeaTab A8-50

I could’ve just as well picked one of A8’s little A7 siblings, especially since they have the affordability edge, but ultimately, the richer screen real estate propelled the A8 in our top seven list. Also, the generous 16 GB storage space.

Lenovo A8

The 8-inch panel ain’t bad resolution-wise either, at 1,280 x 800, and the cameras are pretty impressive all things considered: 5 and 2 megapixels. So then why on Earth couldn’t Lenovo set up the A8 with KitKat out the box? Anyone?

4. Acer Iconia A1-830

Exactly as large and cheap as Lenovo’s bad boy, but boasting a crappier 1,024 x 768 display, the A1-830 prevails in the processing power battle, thanks to a dual-core 1.6 GHz Intel Atom Z2560 SoC, as well as in the battery life bout (up to 7.5 hours of continuous juice).

Acer-Iconia-A1-830

It’s also overall sleeker and more elegant than the A8-50, which sadly can’t hide the fact it too runs Jelly Bean. “Upgradeable to Android 4.4 KitKat when available”, Acer says. Yo Acer, KK has been available for roughly eight months now.

3. Toshiba Excite Go

Whoa, whoa, whoa, Best Buy sells the Excite Go for $99.99?!? That has to be a mistake. The MSRP is $110, and it’s way too early for discounts. Oh, well, maybe it’s a limited-time deal. In which case you better hurry up and order it.

Toshiba-Excite-Go

Then again, even at $110, this is a must-buy. It’s one of the very few in its class powered by Android 4.4 KitKat, it tips the scales at 354 grams and packs quad-core oomph, courtesy of an Intel Atom Z3735G. Yes, the 7-inch display is cringe worthy, sporting 1,024 x 600 pixels resolution, and yes, there’s only a disappointing VGA front-facing cam and no rear snapper.

But erm, KitKat for 100 clams? I’ll eat my hat if you find an OEM as high-profile as Toshiba that offers something similar.

2. Asus MeMo Pad 7 ME176CX

The newest MeMo Pad is by far the zippiest and most frugal, carrying an outstanding quad-core 64-bit (!) Intel Atom Z3745 “Bay Trail” processor beneath its hood. The chip delivers around eight hours of autonomy, and, with the exception of cameras, everything else about the MeMo Pad 7 is state-of-the-art… for mid-range standards.

Asus MeMo Pad 7

The 7-inch 1,280 x 800 IPS panel is as good as it gets, Android 4.4 KitKat is as smooth as it gets, and 1 GB RAM takes care of the multitasking business. Tech hoarders have 16 GB of internal storage to use, plus up to 64 gigs external, and not only is the tab elegant, it’s also stylish, rocking four distinct chromatic options: white, black, red and yellow.

1. Dell Venue 7

Believe it or not, we’re not done yet. Because as awesome as the ME176CX is, the Venue 7 is actually awesomer. How’s that even possible? Simple: 2 GB RAM. Sure, the Intel Atom Z2560 inside Dell’s 7 incher is considerably less punchy than MeMo Pad’s Bay Trail. And the software isn’t quite up to date: 4.3 Jelly Bean.

Dell Venue 7

Plus, the Venue 7 is somehow just as thin as the MeMo Pad 7, yet 20 or so grams heavier. But at the end of the day, the extra gig of RAM makes all the compromises worth it. For crying out loud, Dell used to charge a whopping $230 for the 7-inch Venue. Needless to say therefore that $144 is an extraordinary bargain.

What say you, bargain hunters? Agree with our list entirely? Only partially? Which parts would you alter? Sound off below. We’re all ears.

Toshiba Excite Go is a budget tablet priced at just $110

Toshiba Excite Go

Toshiba Excite Go

Japanese manufacturer Toshiba has just announced the budget Excite Go tablet carrying a solid price tag of $110. As far as the hardware is concerned, the Excite Go isn’t exactly a beast and it’s the pricing that’s the real highlight here.

The tablet packs a 7 inch 1024 x 600 resolution display, a quad core Intel Atom processor, 16GB of internal storage with a microSD card slot and Android 4.4 KitKat out of the box. The tablet also comes with front and rear cameras, although the resolution wasn’t specified in the press release.

This seems like a pretty decent deal for a device which is expected to retail for $109.99 in the markets. Toshiba mentions that the tablet will be available starting July via select retailers as well as official Toshiba stores.

The tablet should be available across the globe as well, especially considering the manufacturer’s wide reach as a notebook manufacturer. However, the pricing could be slightly different when the device is sold in international markets.

Source: Business Wire

Via: Android Community

Best of CES 2014 Awards: Most Likely to Succeed, Class Clown, Prom Queen and More

Who stole the Las Vegas show? Who landed in Sin City looking for fame but ended up spending thousands of bucks on travel and accommodation only to realize they didn’t belong to one of the world’s biggest, glitziest tech trade shows in the first place? Who disappointed the most? And who came hat in hand, ultimately stealing everyone else’s thunder?

Las Vegas

CES 2014 may not technically be over yet, but since no product announcements are in store for the expo’s final two days, it’s time to see which of the exhibitors graduated magna cum laude and who’s likely to end up in jail. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the CES 2014 awards, as voted by… me, myself and I:

Most likely to succeed: Sony Xperia Z1 Compact

Sure, everybody knew it was coming. Heck, the spec sheet in full was as transparent as glass since before winter started. So was the CES announcement pointless? Maybe a little. But in the end, what matters is this thing is spectacular, groundbreaking and, if priced correctly, a huge box-office hit in the making. Period.

Sony Xperia Z1 Compact

Most likely to fail: Lenovo ThinkVision 28, Samsung Galaxy Camera 2

The ThinkVision 28 Android-based 4K monitor (what a load of crap) is not just likely to fail, it’s likely to never, ever, ever be bought by anyone. I mean, for crying out loud, why would you spend north of a grand on a bs monitor in 2014? Get an HD TV for that dough. A tablet. Two tablets. A tablet and a smartphone. Literally anything else the tech world has to offer.

lenovo-ThinkVision-28

As for the Galaxy Camera 2, kudos to Samsung for having the decency to not actually bring it on the CES announcement stage, unveiling it a little earlier. One trainwreck was more than enough for the night.

Prom queen: Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2

It narrowly missed out the “most likely to succeed” honor to the Z1 Compact, so instead of snubbing it completely, I decided to give Sammy’s biggest, coolest, proudest tablet to date a possibly even shinier trophy.

Samsung-Galaxy-Note-Pro-12.2

The thing is it may not succeed after all. But on paper, it looks exquisite, with a gigantic, vibrant display, all the oomph you could ever need, smoother software than ever and S Pen productivity. If only it wasn’t so damn expensive.

Class clown: Acer Liquid Z5

I said it all when rounding up the pre-show launches. Acer meant well, but failed miserably, with a crappy 2010-reminiscent jumbo-sized slab that simply should have never existed. Not in 2010, not now.

Acer-Liquid-Z5

Most likely to get by on looks: Toshiba Chromebook, Asus Zenfone line

It’s not running Android, but it might as well, since Chrome OS is essentially a less functional, but cleaner Android fork. However, what makes the Toshiba Chromebook really stand out is its incredible aesthetic semblance with Apple MacBooks.

Toshiba_Chromebook

Lawsuit pending? Maybe, but all’s fair in love, war and tech, and until they’ll be forced to pay Cupertino damages, the creators of this fresh Chromebook are to make quite the handsome profits. Granted, the margins can’t be huge on a $280 laptop, but make no mistake, there’s a very solid market for low-cost “iClones”.

asus-zenfone-6

Meanwhile, the Asus Zenfones are not handsome in a conventional way, but they’re colorful, playful, cute… and cheap. So frigging cheap! Way to shift your attention to not hybrid smartphones, guys!

The “don’t call it that way” award: ZTE Iconic Phablet

Rarely have I ever got the sudden urge to punch an Android OEM in the face (hypothetically speaking) like when ZTE took the wraps off the “Iconic” Phablet. That’s the single most idiotic name a company has given an underwhelming gizmo since, what do you know, ZTE again introduced the Geek. Are these guys for real or are they the world’s biggest attention whoring trolls?

ZTE-Iconic-Phablet

Because if it’s the latter, then they might be incredibly smart after all. Think about it, ZTE had a fairly modest CES 2014 showing, and taking for granted the “there’s no such thing as bad publicity” saying, they needed something to get people talking. Mostly swearing, snarking and ridiculing, but talking nevertheless.

The “if only looks wouldn’t matter” award: Neptune Pine

An independently working smartwatch with hardware from this millennium, a full version of Android, nice cameras and sizable battery? I’ll take a dozen. Not so fast. Because the Neptune Pine, while a tremendous idea in theory, is gigantic, bulky and overpriced. You’d probably be better off just slapping a Galaxy S2 or something on your wrist. It’ll make you look equally as crazy and douchey.

Neptune_Pine

Most likely to win the lottery but lose the ticket: Meizu, Huawei

Okay, we’ve officially been waiting for this Western invasion of Chinese brands for, what, a decade, century, and with each passing year, it looks less and less likely of ever happening. I mean, both Meizu and Huawei (plus ZTE) visited Las Vegas for CES 2014, but did it more to cross another item off their bucket lists or something.

meizu-mx3

Meizu showcased the quirky-yet-beautiful MX3, announcing it’ll roll out stateside in… Q3 (?!?), whereas Huawei was an even bigger disappointment, presenting the Ascend Mate 2 with a 6.1-inch 720p panel and mediocre 1.6 GHz Snapdragon SoC. Good thing it can charge other phones and offers 4G LTE support herp a derp.

Alright, dear readers, now it’s your turn. How would you describe CES 2014 in one word? What devices are your own personal standouts and why? We’re all ears.

Toshiba launches the Excite 7 tablet for $169.99

Excite 7 Toshiba

Excite 7 ToshibaToshiba, which has been a silent player in the tablet industry, has just announced its own budget tablet called the Excite 7. This 7 inch tablet will go one on one with the likes of the Amazon Kindle Fire HDX and the 2013 Nexus 7, which are giants in this segment. Priced at $170, Toshiba certainly has the right idea, but the specs sheet isn’t exactly high end.

The tablet comes with a 7 inch 1024×600 resolution display, 8GB of internal storage with a microSD card slot, 1GB of RAM, 3MP camera on the back, a 0.3MP front camera, Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean, Stereo Speakers, a RockChip RK3188 quad core processor and a battery which last 13 hours with normal usage or 9 hours of continuous video playback.

It’s quite clear that the Excite 7 is not a beast with the hardware, but considering that it’s priced $60 less than the entry level Nexus 7, this might not be a bad bet after all. With the holidays approaching, the Excite 7 could be the perfect gift for your loved ones.

Source: Toshiba

Via: Engadget

Intel announces three new Chromebooks from HP, Acer and Toshiba

haswell-chromebook

haswell-chromebook

Intel’s Developer Forum has not just been all about new chips for smartphones and smartwatches, but the launch of three new Chromebook’s running on Intel Haswell processor chips, for better performance and battery life.

First on the stage is the HP Chromebook 14, sporting the largest display out of the three and a 1366×768 resolution. It comes with a micro-USB, WWAN and two USB 3.0 ports. HP will also be adding 100GB of Google Drive cloud storage for two years and the price starts at $299.

Acer and Toshiba have also made Chromebooks fitted with the Haswell processor. Acer’s claim to fame comes from the slim and light body, but we are not too sure on the internals. Acer is Google’s oldest partner on Chrome OS, alongside Samsung.

They all look like Chromebooks, plastic with a curved shell design and front facing camera. The main part of the Chromebook is the software, Chrome OS is still a half-baked solution for some, but for people who only want a web-browser, it is a cheap solution.

Intel is trying to get into as many markets as they can, with Haswell planted into all future Windows 8 PCs and new Mac devices and Intel Quark for smartwatches and digestible microprocessors. With PC sales slowly dying, they need tablet and smartphone sales to keep strong.

Source

Toshiba Sneaks Excite Pro and Excite Write Tegra 4 Tablets to BestBuy and Amazon

If you are shopping for an Android tablet from a popular and reputable manufacturer for cheap, you may be interested to know that Toshiba, a long-term computer market leader, has sneaked a range of tablets to the online market stores BestBuy and Amazon and the amazing thing is, they are the first tablets running NVIDIA’s new Tegra 4 chip.

Toshiba Excite

These are the first tablets powered by NVIDIA’s new line of processors to hit the shelves, even ahead of the much touted NVIDIA Shield gaming tablet cum console.  The guys at Toshiba are making the tablets available in the US market quietly and at quite affordable prices actually.  The new Toshiba Excite tablets with Tegra 4 chips include the Excite Pro and Excite Write.

Toshiba Excite Pro

The Toshiba Excite Pro is a 10.1 inch Tegra 4 tablet boasting of a 1.6 GHz processor and 2 GB of RAM to complement the raw power the new Tegra 4 chip promises.  The tablet’s screen offers an amazingly crisp display at an amazing 2560 x 1600 pixels resolution, a sizeable bezel and a battery that promises up to 9.5 hours of video playback.  It comes with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean out-of-the-box and a 32 GB onboard memory.

Toshiba Excite Pro

The Toshiba Excite Pro retails for $479.99 at Amazon and Best Buy.

 

Toshiba Excite Write

From the name, you can probably tell that this tablet is made mainly for document editing and other office-like tasks, but its specifications show that this could as well pass as an entertainment and a gaming device.  The tablet’s build is a lot like the Excite Pro except that it comes with extra stylus support and an active digitizer to support the styli.  These added features are reason the tablet costs an extra 120 bucks.  As a recap, the Excite write is a 10.1 inch tablet with a 2560 x 1600 LCD screen, a quad-core Tegra 41.6 GHz processor, 2 GB RAM and 32 GB onboard memory.  The tablet also comes with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean and the same battery as the Excite Pro.

Toshiba Excite Write

You can get the Toshiba Excite Pro at Best Buy and Amazon for $599 if you need one for school or for the office.

 

Excite Pure

Besides Excite Pro and Write, Toshiba also quietly released another 10 inch tablet in the same line with a Pure moniker.  The Toshiba Excite Moniker has lesser specs than the Excite Pro and Write but they are still quite impressive.  It is a 10.1 inch tablet with a lesser resolution than its two siblings at 1280 x 800 pixels.  This tablet also comes with an older quad-core Tegra 3 processor, 1 GB of RAM and 16 GB onboard memory.  The Excite Pure comes with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean and a battery that promises up to 12 hours of continuous use on a single charge.

Toshiba Excite Pure

The Toshiba pure tablet will be more affordable, retailing at $250 on Amazon but it is also available on Best Buy.

Toshiba has listed the full range of Excite tablets on their retail site.  NVIDIA has confirmed that the Toshiba Excite Pro and Write are the first to come with the Tegra 4 processor but we may have to wait a little longer to determine just how good their new chip is on tablets.

Source: Android Police

Toshiba announces Excite Pro, Excite Write, Excite Pure tablets

The Toshiba Excite Pro, Excite Write, and Excite Pure tablets are new offerings from the Japan-based company, which took the opportunity to unveil them at Computex 2013 in Taiwan.

Toshiba-Excite-Pro

All three tablets span 10 inches diagonally, and are all based on the Android 4.2 Jelly Bean operating system. Their similarities, however, end there. These three tablets are aimed at different kinds of consumers: the Excite Pure at budget-conscious buyers who only need modest features; the Excite Pro at those who require premium specifications; and the Excite Write at those who prefer a tablet that can handle note-taking.

The least expensive, therefore, among the tablets is the Excite Pure, which is priced at $299.99. The “Pure” word in its name refers to the basic Android experience that the device offers. In other words, it does not have any Toshiba-branded skin overlaid on the operating system. It runs on an Nvidia Tegra 3 processor under the hood, and packs an IPS display with a resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels. It furthermore has 1 GB of RAM and 16 GB of internal storage. There is a single camera onboard, a front-facing 1.2 MP shooter. Among its ports are a microSD card slot for memory expansion, microHDMI, and microUSB.

On the opposite end of the spectrum is the high-end Toshiba Excite Pro. This tablet boasts of an Nvidia Tegra 4 processor, 32 GB of expandable storage capacity, and 2 GB of RAM. Meanwhile, its screen resolution is 2560 x 1600 pixels, protected by Gorilla Glass 2. Harman Kardonstereo speakers promise quality audio. Adding to this list of specifications is an 8 MP rear camera, a1.2 MP front camera, a microSD card slot, microHDMI and microUSB port.

The third tablet is basically the same as the Toshiba Excite Pro, save for the fact that it supports a Wacom digitizer. This feature allows the device to compete against the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1. CNet reports that the Wacom digitizer is able to recognize 1,024 degrees of pressure, but unlike the S Pen on the Samsung slate, it does not automatically change the line thickness. To the Wacom digitizer’s credit, however, CNet says that such tool felt more natural to the touch as compared with the light S Pen.

The Toshiba Excite Pure has a price tag of $499.99, while the Excite Pro will sell for $599.99.

The tablets are expected to be available from Toshiba on June 25, and will arrive in other stores come early July.

via cnet, pocketnow

New Toshiba AT10LE-A tablet leaked

toshibaDue to immense competition in the respective industry, companies in the tablet industry have to be extremely secretive at times. They have to make sure that whatever their upcoming product is, its images or features are not leaked out before the launch. Unfortunately, many companies have to face the problem of leakage. Just recently, Toshiba, a major player in this industry had to face such a problem.

Their new upcoming tablet known as the AT10LE-A is highly awaited. Many experts believe that the tablet, running on  the latest OS of Android (Android 4.2.1) will feature some of the most amazing features which are yet to be disclosed. Unfortunately, its images were leaked out just recently.

One of the most amazing features of this tablet would be the keyboard dock. This is good news for those users who like the ‘feel’ of a QWERTY keyboard and would not mind using it with their tablet. This will definitely be of interest to such users.

The dock seems to be standalone and not connected. Although we are not sure of it, but it might actually protect the screen of the tablet when not in use, by having the dock-able keyboard placed on the screen.

The images also gave us some other hints. The sides of the tablet have slots for micro-SD cards, micro-HDMI and micro-USB. We are not sure as to what the internal memory will be, but the option of inserting another micro-SD card indicates that the onboard memory might be a little low.

The most stand-out feature of the tablet is the fact that it will feature NVIDIA’s new Tegra 4 mobile chip. This chip is said to give a speed of about 1.8GHz.

Many people have been avoiding Toshiba’s tablets because there are so many other substitutes available. Therefore, if Toshiba really wants to make a name in the tablet industry, it will have to introduce features that no other tablet has before.

 

Source: Engadget

Toshiba reveals WT310 business tablet

toshibaTablets have been becoming very popular over the last few years. Many people are now getting rid of the laptops that they own to buy a tablet which not only provides convenience but also improved portability.

Toshiba has been one of the well known companies in the tablet industry and to improve their position further, they are going to launch a new tablet with amazing features.

The WT310 tablet would have a screen size of about 11.6 inches and will feature the Windows 8 Pro(64-bit). Users of windows 8 have already been very impressed with its user friendliness and hence this tablet will be a very popular option amongst such people.

The WT310 is basically meant for business people. Therefore, there are certain key applications preinstalled for users. These include the Trusted Platform Module and the Anti-theft software making sure that people don’t lose out on their important data.

Another good thing about the tablet is that it has a digitizer pen included in the box so that customers can jot down the most important points on their tablet in the least time possible.

The tablet will have a 1080p screen resolution making the picture quality even better. It has an Intel Core processor about which further details are not known and has an SD Card slot for enhanced storage.

As far as the connectivity is concerned, the tablet has a usual HDMI port, LTE Support, Bluetooth and a dock which might have other connectivity options aswell.

The size and weight of the tablet are pretty reasonable as well. The size is about 9 x 7.5 x 0.5 and it weighs around 29 ounces. Currently, the only color available is the steel grey metallic.

The look of the tablet is very stylish and users would probably not want to place a protective case on the tablet so that they can show off the wonderful design.

 

Source: Engadget

Toshiba offers 4.7-mm thin 13-megapixel camera module

Toshiba has a new ultra-thin camera module that is dubbed as the thinnest camera module yet. The camera module, which is also known as the TCM9930MD, measures only 4.7 millimeters thin and comes with a 1/3.07-inch 13-megapixel CMOS image sensor, as well as a 1.12μm pixel size.

Toshiba-thin-camera-module

The Toshiba camera module is equipped with four lenses which are made of plastic, reveals the Japan-based Tech On website. It likewise has a dedicated signal processing circuit to optimize its performance. Said circuit also ensures that the camera, despite its small size, functions properly and delivers images that are not distorted despite the fact that the lenses are.  The camera module also features a flip chip structure instead of a wire bonded structure to maintain its thinness.

The thinness of the camera module may allow future smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices to maintain a very slim profile, possibly measuring less than 5 millimeters in thickness.

Unwired View cautions, however, that while the device’s thinness will be useful for thin devices, its picture quality may not necessarily be the best. To illustrate, the blog cites the 12-megapixel image sensor of the Nokia N8 which it expects to capture better images .

Still, the new Toshiba camera module may be considered a selling point because of its novelty in the market. It may even be featured on one or several flagship devices which may underscore the camera’s measurements.

On a more general sense, the Toshiba camera module may be a sign that consumers prefer thin devices. This is also evidenced by the release of devices claiming to be the thinnest in their category, only to be replaced by another in a very short span of time.

Toshiba is expected to start producing the camera module starting December this year. It is estimated that a million units of the camera module will be produced monthly.

As early as May, however, Toshiba will be sending out samples of the device. These samples will be sold for the price of ¥7,000 or around US$74.30.

via androidauthority, unwiredview