Arstechnica Says Toshiba Tablet Is a Buy

Arstechnica gives the Toshiba Thrive tablet the “buy” sign because of its full-sized ports: HDMI for connecting to a TV set and two USB ports that can be used to connect a mouse and keyboard. It’s slightly larger and heavier than the iPad, runs the latest 3.1 (Honeycomb) version of Android and has an SD card slot for storing and moving content.

On the bad side, the battery has only about seven hours of use between charges compared to the iPad’s 10. It can be easily replaced, unlike the iPad’s. The Thrive does not come with 3G mobile broadband, only Wi-Fi. The pre-installed apps are “either demos or nearly useless” and can’t be easily removed. The user interface, Arstechnica said, “can be jerky on occasion, and is much less smooth than what we’re used to from the iPad.”

Prices are 8GB for $429, 16GB for $479, and 32GB for $579. Arstechnica says it’s closer to a laptop than any tablet.

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