After the earlier Thrive and the Excite line-up, Toshinba has decided to refresh its line-up of offerings for the tablet market. The three models – the Excite Pure, the Excite Pro and the Excite Write – will feature similar plastic designs, as well as a 10-inch form factor and Android 4.2 OS. However, this is where the similarity starts to differ.
Let’s look at each piece. The first one, the Toshiba Pure, comes in as a $300 (Rs 17,000 approx) tablet running a Tegra 3 SoC with a 1280 x 800 screen that comes in with a Gorilla Glass 1 cover glass. The tablet will not feature a rear camera, though. The tab comes in with an internal memory of 16 GB, but a microSD slot ensures that users need not be bothered by this limit.
The Excite Pro comes with a Tegra 4 SoC
The next offering, the Excite Pro, ups the ante by offering a Tegra 4 chip as well as an internal memory of 32 GB with a micoSD slot. The tab will also feature an 8MP rear camera as well as a 2560 x 1600 screen with a 300 ppi Gorilla Glass 2 cover glass. The tab takes care of user audio needs with Harman Kardon sound. The tablet is slated for arrival around July and will be priced at $500 (Rs 28,345).
The other offering that Toshiba is bringing to the market is the Excite Write, which basically is a tablet with pen support. According to the company, the tablet features a Wacom digitiser which can support up to 1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity. Toshiba is also pre-loading its own TruNote and TruCapture apps for note taking. Apart from this feature, the Write has all the specifications of Excite Pro, i.e., Tegra 4, 32GB of internal memory, an 8MP rear camera and a 10.1-inch 2560 x 1600 display. The Write will also be available from next month and will be priced at $600 (Rs 34,000 approx). There is also an optional keyboard cover for all three of the models, which will feature a raised tile Bluetooth keyboard and a magnetised notch.
The Excite Write comes in with its own stylus
It’s interesting to see how Toshiba is launching its line of tablets. From the prices seen, the company is putting its tablets in direct competition to other premium products like the Asus Transformer Pad Infinity and the iPad. And if you look at the specifications of the Excite Pro, the screen dimensions put it squarely in the Nexus 10 territory. However, the chip that is running the show may be a problem.
Till date, most big manufacturers like Samsung or Apple have not picked up on the Tegra chip. The earlier released Tegra 3 processor needed a separate cellular radio, which inevitably led to compatibility issues. Apart from the HTC One X+ and a few other minor victories, the chip did not see much success. Even in the tablet market, in the past, only the Nexus 7 and the Surface RT were seen featuring this chip.
While the Tegra 4 has worked on its cellular connectivity, it remains to be seen if users will pick Tegra-powered tablets in a market which is dominated by Samsung’s Exynos, Qualcomm’s Snapdragon and Apple’s A-family.