back to article Toshiba outs 7in Android 3.2 tablet

Toshiba has taken the wraps off a 7in version of its Thrive tablet. Toshiba Thrive 7in Android tablet Due out in the US in December - Toshiba UK has yet to respond to our request for local availability and pricing details - the Thrive 7 sports a 1280 x 800 resolution touchscreen, SRS Labs-powered sound system and an Nvidia …

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FAIL

16:9

I fail to understand why manufacturers (apart from the rotten fruit people) persist in using 16:9 ratio screens. There's no benefit, apart from watching movies.

When the 1.2GHz version comes out I'll be ordering an Archos 80 G9 which has a far more sensible 4:3 XGA screen, and is only £200.

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Since watching movies is a major use case for this sort of device, one would think that 16:9 would be the better choice.

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FAIL

"No benefit apart from watching movies"

So you don't think that watching movies (and also TV these days) would be one of the most obvious and common uses for a portable device with a decent sized screen and media browser?

The second common use for tablets is to read digital magazines. While magazines do usually use paper sizes with the standard sqrt(2):1 ratio, digital editions don't need to use the outside margins because the purpose is served by the tablet frame and they also dont need to use the gutter except on two-page splashes. Excluding the margins moves the ratio closer to 1.78:1 than to 1.33:1, making widescreen the better choice for display.

The third main use of tablets is for web browsing, which involves looking at content designed for PC monitors. As nearly all new monitors are widescreen these days, a sensible site designer will at the very least make his page compatible with both 4:3 and 16:9 formats, and he may even design it primarily for 16:9 display.

In summary: 16:9 format is at least as good as 4:3 for every main use of a tablet, and in most cases will be better.

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jai
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movies on a 7" screen will be little better than movies on a phone screen. probably looks exactly like watching one on a 10" 4:3 screen.

i'd argue that reading books is a much bigger use case than reading digital magazines and one which this device should really be catering for because it's going to be competing against the amazon fire.

if a page is designed to work in 16:9, then it's going to be very wide, but display very little content vertically before you need to start scrolling. annoying for the user, annoying for the designer. design it for portrait viewing isn't going to make things any better either. most people may have 16:9 monitors (or here at work i have two 4:3 next to each other) but i still view the web is a 4:3-ish window floating in the middle.

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Raz
Windows

While I hate this resolution on the desktop, I find it OK on the tablet, because I am reading a book on my Transformer in landscape orientation, and I see two pages side by side, exactly as a real book, and different from the iPad or other tablets that I have seen used in portrait mode, and as such showing one page only.

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768 is retrograde.

By 800: and about time too.

We'll see if the rest is any good in time I guess.

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I don't own a tablet, but I do wonder; does the thickness of these devices really make a difference?

I can see how it would make a difference on a phone because it has to slide nicely into your pocket (although my "thick" G1 managed fine), but I don't know anyone with pockets big enough to fit a tablet in. Surely weight would be a bigger concern?

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I agree - I've admittedly only held an iPad for a very brief moment so my experience is limited but 12mm doesn't sound excessively thick to me? I'd have thought that even at that size, the weight would be a more of a factor in how comfortable it is to hold. Similarly, below a certain thickness, surely these things will start to dig into your hands?

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Anonymous Coward

Plus looking at the photo the back has a textured (rubbery?) back to it, and that alone proibably accounts for ~1 mm.

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Raz
Boffin

Right, I have an Asus Transformer and I use it with and without a case that practically doubles its thickness, something like http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/462071880/For_ASUS_Transformer_leather_case.html

I don't find it that much different in handling, but weight is absolutely more of a concern.

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Anonymous Coward

More like...The Thick.

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Anonymous Coward

Toshiba announce new android tablet...

Have they stopped supporting it yet?

...

How about now?

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Typical ugly piece of crap from Toshiba, I don't know why they bother...

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It doesn't look ugly to me, and if it's even half as reliable as their laptops it'll be a solid piece of kit.

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In the 80s/90s, Toshiba's laptops were regarded as the best. One of the reasons was the reliability and stability of the build. Can't blame a company for trying to maintain an image.

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Perhaps

But when I worked in a workshop in the early 90's I only saw the broken ones and they were a goddam bitch to work on compared to say, the Compaqs of the day.

Hated them ever since.

Also, their laptops these days are indeed butt ugly things.

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Does it have apt-x ?

The first tablet running Android properly and doing apt-x gets my money.

Being able to have it around the house - streaming di.fm or any other music over Bluetooth/apt-x (the apt-x means CD quality) - to bluetooth/apt-x enabled speakers such as

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Creative-Wireless-Bluetooth-Speaker-System/dp/B003MAJM36/ref=sr_1_5?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1317236922&sr=1-5

or to the stereo using a bluetooth/apt-x receiver

http://www.amazon.co.uk/QED-QE2920-U-Play-Bluetooth-Receiver/dp/B003BF0OF2/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1317237077&sr=8-9

is what I'll hand money over for. Browsing the web and checking messages is a Brucie bonus.

Creative are close with the Zii0 - but they've knackered Android so that you can't use Andoroid Marketplace. That's a bit like selling an iThing which can't access the app store - how dumb can you get?

Unbelievable - Creative don't understand that when I buy a product I expect it to be mine - not crippled so that Creative can try (and fail) scrape some extra pennies. They could have a runaway success on their hands. Imagine - hi-fi music streaming to any room from a tablet costing about £150. And that would be any music you have either on the device or any online services you access.

I would get one tomorrow if Marketplace was working. As it is - I think I'll have to wait for a new Samsung because apparently the new ones are incorporating apt-x.

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Anonymous Coward

Ports!

Yay!

If this thing is stable and fast software-wise, it might be the most practical tablet out there (next to the Asus Transformer).

It's got ports! Like, real everyday ports! And the 7" size is pocketable, I'm fond of it. 10.1" stuff needs a bag or a coffee table. 7" just needs a coat pocket.

It's not a fashion accessory by any stretch. But if the build quality is good, it could be a keeper.

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Wishlist: an optional, pressure sensitive pen. For taking notes or the occasional doodle away from the Wacom.

Android needs a common pen input framework, so we can have better drawing apps. A biggish screen could be useful for more than games, browsing, photos and reading. HTC and Samsung have proprietary stuff, but they are just proprietary. Something like Autodesk Sketchbook Pro would be a killer app among graphics designers..

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