Toshiba launches its first tablet PC with LED screen

Toshiba on Monday launched its first tablet PCs with LED screens, taking some thunder away from Dell, which later in the day is expected to launch Latitude XT, its convertible PC with an LED screen.

Targeted at “mobile professionals,” Portege M700 Tablet PCs come with 12.1-inch LED (light-emitting diode)-backlit displays and antiglare coating that display rich colors both indoors and outdoors, Toshiba said in a statement.

The touchscreen supports both finger and stylus input, the company said.

The tablet PCs are available in multiple configurations, with prices starting at US$1,449. The $1,449 Portege M700-S7008X is powered by Intel Core 2 Duo Processor T7250 running at 2GHz, and includes 1G byte of RAM, 80G-byte hard drive, graphics accelerator, wired and wireless a/b/g/n networking, DVD drive, webcam and Bluetooth support. It runs the Windows XP Tablet PC Edition 2005 OS.

Depending on configuration, weight for the systems starts at 4.4 pounds (2 kilograms).

Tablet PCs are trickling into the consumer space as touchscreen technology develops, showing signs of breaking away from its traditional presence in vertical markets like education and health, said Ben Bajarin, an analyst at Creative Strategies. Companies like Microsoft and Apple have invested money in developing touch technology and want to ensure it reaches multiple form-factor devices like ultramobile PCs, cell phones and notebooks, Bajarin said.

Screens with LED technology make Tablet PCs more attractive to consumers, Bajarin said. Compared to LCDs (liquid crystal displays), LED-backlit displays are brighter, save energy and have better contrast, Bajarin said.

Though OEMs have managed to drive down LED display prices, they remain expensive for the average consumer, Bajarin said. As more PC manufacturers adopt LED, prices may fall.

The system is available in the U.S. through Toshiba’s Web site. Toshiba wasn’t available for comment on worldwide availability.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada
Agam Shah
Agam Shah
Agam Shah is a reporter for the IDG News Service in New York. He covers hardware including PCs, servers, tablets, chips, semiconductors, consumer electronics and peripherals.

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