Toshiba on Wednesday announced a new high-performance, low-power hard drive series aimed at the enterprise crowd, the first of its kind for Toshiba, and a feat the company attributes to "the integration of Fujitsu Limit's enterprise-directed magnetic drive business into Toshiba's HDD business."
The new MBF2600RC enterprise HDD series comes in three different capacities: 300GB, 450GB, and 600GB. Each drive spins at over 10,000RPM, but that isn't the only performance-oriented feature. Improvements to the magnetic recording head and disk's magnetic layer gives the drives an area density of 595Mbit/mm2, the highest so far for 2.5-inch enterprise drives.
Other features include an internal transfer rate of 216MB/s, which is 13 percent faster than the previous generation MD2300RC; optional drive-based encryption; and power management schemes allowing for dynamic spin speeds.
Toshiba touted its new Satellite T130 notebook PC featuring fairly standard specifications: 13.3-inch LED display, up to 8GB of RAM, hard drives up to 500GB and a 6-cell battery rated up to 11 hours of operation in a package under four pounds. Oh, did I forget to mention it has an integrated 4G LTE network card capable of blistering network speeds?!
The new chip, provided by Sony Ericsson, demonstrated real world download speeds of 16Mbps, while the chip itself is capable of speeds scaling to 140Mbps. Toshiba demonstrated the new device at the Mobile World Congress show. Other than the demo, they would not provide any pricing or availability information for T130’s with the 4G chip.
The U500-1EX has a 13.3-inch TrueBrite XGA touch screen LCD, with a resolution of 1280 x 800. It’s powered by the Intel Core i3-330M processor, with a clock speed of 2.14GHz, a front side bus speed of 1,066MHz, and a second level cache of 3MB. Standard memory configuration is 4GB of 1,066 MHZ DDR3 RAM, expandable to 8GB. And it comes with a 320GB hard drive and double-layer DVD drive with read/write capabilities.
The rest of the U500-1EX’s specs are pretty much what you’d expect: an HDMI port, a 5-in-1 media card reader, two USB 2.0 ports, an integrated HD web camera and built-in microphone, 802.11 b/g/N Wi-Fi, fast Ethernet, and Bluetooth. The touchpad allows for multi-touch control. Battery life is estimated at a bit over three hours.
Moving out of the rumors category, Toshiba has confirmed the launch of a dedicated Freeview HD PVR, the HDR5010. Part of what makes this noteworthy is it's Toshiba's first attempt at releasing a digital TV recorder.
Consumers will find a pair of tuners packed inside, which makes it possible to record one channel while watching another. The HDR5010 also comes with the ability to pause and rewind live TV.
Storage duties are handled by a 500GB hard drive. Toshiba says this is enough to provide about 250 hours of standard-definition televisions content, or up to 120 hours of HD recording.
Other features include two USB ports for connecting digital cameras and music players, an Ethernet port, and the Audio Description system, which provides additional narrative for the visually impaired.
UK residents will be able to purchase the HDR5010 starting in June for around $550.
If you've never heard of TransferJet, it's a close-proximity wireless transfer technology offering high-speed transfers of larger files from your handheld gadgets to other devices. The physical transmission layer comes rated at 560Mbps, while the maximum data throughput (think: real-world) is 375Mbps (you can read more about TransferJet here).
Toshiba didn't say exactly what products will be the first infused with TransferJet, nor what kind of pricing premium the technology would result in. The company did say, however, that TransferJet will probably be added to just a handful of models to begin with. And because it has already been demonstrated by Toshiba's UK laptop division, it's a safe bet that we'll likely see this appear on Toshiba's laptop line first.
Gone are the Atom processor’s days of monopolizing the low-cost mobile-computing market. This should come as welcome news to folks who want the price and portability benefits of a netbook but more robust performance.
Take Toshiba’s Satellite T115 as an example. To say that it has an 11.6-inch diagonal screen, weighs 3.6 pounds, and is coated in a high-gloss black finish inlaid with a subtle geometric pattern is to describe any number of netbooks on the market today. The fact that the T115 costs $480 only drives home the similarity.
And yet, the T115 is different from netbooks in one very significant way. It houses a traditional notebook processor. It’s just a single-core, single-threaded, 45mn, 1.3GHz Pentium M, but that proved plenty sufficient for making mincemeat of our zero-point netbook’s benchmark scores. That machine’s Atom N270 is clocked 23 percent higher at 1.6GHz, but the Pentium beat it by massive margins—from 27.4 percent in MainConcept all the way up to 128.7 percent in 3DMark 03.
As storage technology moves inexorably toward solid state, Toshiba is determined to be on the forefront of the changeover. The Japanese tech giant has announced plans to expand their selection of 32nm Multi-Level-Cell (MLC) NAND SSD units. The new lineup will include a “Half-Slim” 128GB SSD suitable for use in netbooks. The drives will be capable of 180MB per second read and 70MB per second write speeds.
Lest you assume that Toshiba has forgotten the performance space, there will also be new high performance SSDs. These standard 2.5-inch drives will be capable of 250MB per second read and 180MB per second write speeds. They will be available in sizes ranging from 64GB all the way up to 512GB.
If you’re weary of SSD reliability, fear not. These drives will support the new TRIM commands implemented in Windows 7. The first production samples should show up in Q1, with wide availability in Q2. No pricing information was available.
Another day, another Atom N450-based netbook launch. This one comes courtesy of Toshiba, who on Monday announced its version of a next-gen netbook, the mini NB305.
"Our first netbook in the U.S. market stood out from the competition because we fixed what was broken in the previous generation of netbooks," said Carl Pinto, vice president of product development, Toshiba, Digital Products Division. "As the category continues to evolve, we're pushing the envelope even further to deliver the next generation that again exceeds customer expectations with better performance, an even higher battery life rating, and smarter features that enhance the mobile computing experience."
In addition to cruising along with Intel's Atom N450 processor, Toshiba says the mini NB305 comes with a full-size keyboard and full-size touchpad. The 10.1-inch netbook also features 1GB of DDR2-800 memory (upgradeable to 2GB), up to a 250GB HDD along with Toshiba's Hard Drive Impact Sensor technology, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, three USB ports (one of them Sleep-and-Charge capable), a memory card reader, webcam, a 6-cell battery, and Windows 7 Starter Edition.
The mini NB305 will go on sale on January 12 with prices ranging from $350 to $400.
The technology is built around a high speed camera, running at 154 frames per second, which captures finger position and movement in 3D, and translates it, using a “Lucas-Kanade Algorithm”, into actions. For example, rather than tapping a screen, a user could tap air to type or dial a phone number. And to scroll through a list of pictures or contact entries would require a similar swipe through the air--no touching the phone required.
Tim Hornyak, writing on the Crave Gadget Blog for Cnet, says this example of a “gestural interface” follows work by MIT (SixthSense), Toshiba, and Pioneer. Still, it raises the question: what’s the point? Touchscreens, while at times greasy, work well enough to get the job done. Like VHS beat out Beta, a more sophisticated interface technology won’t win out by virtue of its technical superiority--it has to fulfill a distinctly perceived purpose. Wagging your finger at your iPhone doesn’t seem to be a compelling enough reason.
Still, as we begin to place greater demands on mobile devices, it may be possible that the 2D world of the touchscreen will need replacement. In that case, a 3D option, such as this one, may well make an appearance in the marketplace.
The FTC was investigating the world’s four largest manufacturers of NAND flash memory: two in South Korea, one in Japan, and one in the United States. The four companies investigated are unnamed in the report, leaving us to wonder who they are. The report, however, does tell us the world’s four largest NAND flash memory manufacturers are Samsung and Hynix (in South Korea), Toshiba (in Japan), and SanDisk (in the United States). Perhaps it’s not such a mystery after all.
NAND flash memory, which is cheap to produce, is used in digital music players, digital campers, USB memory sticks, and the like. An over-production in the latter part of the decade lead to a downward spiral in prices, which some manufacturers are alleged to have perpetrated to gain market share. Manufacturers claim that pricing was more a factor of oversupply and technological advances, which the FTC seems to agree with, finding no evidence of price-fixing on the international level, and limited evidence of price-fixing on the domestic level.