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Summary:

The race to build a tablet that competes with the iPad is underway, with Toshiba set to announce the Folio 100 this week. The Folio is an Android slate designed for HD video playback. Samsung will announce its own tablet to compete with the iPad.

Toshiba Folio 100

The Android tablet space is heating up as electronics giant Toshiba is set to unveil the Folio 100 at IFA this week. The Folio 100 is no cheap Android tablet; the feature set pegs it to be a genuine competitor to Apple’s iPad. The 10-inch Folio is stuffed with compelling features, including some (web cam, HDMI) that are missing on the iPad.

Toshiba is a big name in mobile computing, and the adoption of Android for its inaugural leap into the consumer tablet space shows how far Google has pushed the platform in this young segment. The Folio 100 will be packing a Tegra 2 processor from Nvidia, which is designed for HD video support. This puts the Toshiba tablet firmly in competition with the iPad; it even surpasses it given the HDMI port for connection to HD televisions for playback and the web cam for video calls.

It’s significant that companies with established brands like Toshiba are entering the tablet space to provide serious competition for Apple. Samsung is also expected to join the fray by announcing this week the Galaxy Tab, a 7-inch tablet with features that will also compare favorably with the iPad.

Android has a screen resolution limit of 800×480, but since both tablets are running at a higher resolution, the companies must have worked past that with Google. Google thus far has excluded tablets from the Android Market; since apps play a big role in using Android, let’s hope that will be worked out by the time these tablets hit the market.

Image credit: Notebook Italia

Related content on GigaOM Pro (sub. req’d): Can Anyone Compete With the iPad?

  1. Interesting, but unveil != launch. As I recall, quite a few Tegra 2-based Android tablets were shown at CES 8 months ago. None of those devices have yet come to market. I’ll be willing to talk about competition for this sector when they do, but not before.

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  2. I would be gobsmacked if Android can compete with the iPad. Where are the Apps ? It will be good to see dozens of models trying to copy Apple goodness. Unfortunately most android slated are destined to become bottom feeders while the incredible iPad will comfortable settle in at the thrown fitting for the tablet King.

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  3. freescifistories Monday, August 30, 2010

    Competition can hardly be “heating up” when there is not a single product to actually purchase.

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  4. Android is already a better os than iOS. Still a bit rough at the edges, but it needs a market to develop in. And now, the market begins to appear. I have experience with all major os’es for phone and i can say, for now, nothing beats my nexus. Usability of Android is ages ahead. I find that the step from win3.1 to win95 is similar magnitude to what Android brings new to mobile touchscreens.

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