Official: Toshiba Announces Low-Cost Excite 7 Tablet, Fails to Live Up to its Name

November 20, 2013 - Written By Andrew Port

Toshiba isn’t known for its Android devices. Its laptops (one of which I own), Desktops, TVs and the like are all trusted products and generally do a fine job. Earlier this year in June, Toshiba put forward three new tablets on their Excite lineup, each of them unique in their own way (especially their high price tags). The devices seem well built and at least the expensive ones have pretty decent specs. However, all three of the tablets they released were 10-inch variants; none were 8-inch or 7-inch, like many companies might also build. The last tablet like that from Toshiba had actually come out in the summer of 2012, with the Excite 7.7 Tablet.

As if to make up for the lack of a smaller tablet, as well as the high prices they’re expecting for their 10-inch lineup, Toshiba has put forth a new 7-inch Excite Tablet, which will run at a mere $170 as reported by liliputing. The device’s specs are far from advanced for today’s standards — for that matter, they would have only been considered advanced for last year’s standards. Running the show is a Rockchip RK3188 ARM Cortex-A9 quad-core processor with 1GB of RAM, which will be pushing around a less-than-average 1024 x 600 display. There will be 8GB of storage available, and the tablet will also feature a .3 megapixel front facing shooter, and a 3 megapixel rear facing shooter. All of this will be running Android 4.2, an obvious oversight as this tablet really could have benefited from Android 4.4’s low RAM usage.

The tablet will have a Micro-SD slot for expandable storage, but despite Toshiba’s promise of 12 hours of usage on battery, Android Police reports only getting around 6 hours with medium usage.

While its nice to see continued interest in making low cost tablets, we know that Google was able to make the Nexus 7 (2013) with far better specs than what are being offered here, for only about $60 dollars more — with that sort of difference, I’d wait to get the Nexus 7. Nevertheless, if Toshiba can manage to sell these, then perhaps they’re onto something. Not everyone needs the sharpest screen or fastest processors, and emerging markets have a special need for extremely low cost pieces of technology.