UK Soon To Get Toshiba AC100 Android Netbook

Toshiba’s [TYO:6502] Ac10 Android running netbook garnered quite a lot of attention when it was first released in Japan earlier this year. It became probably the first netbook ever to become available for purchase with the Google [NASDAQ:GOOG] mobile OS Android running on it. However, anyone who wanted to pick one up had no other option than to buy it from Japan. But it seems like that is about to change as Toshiba UK plans to launch it in the UK.

The hint that Toshiba UK might start selling the AC100 in the country comes from the fact that the company has put up a page for the product on the official website. The minisite is complete with detailed specs of the netbook/smartbook and gallery images.

Some prefer calling it a smartbook because it is essentially a mini-laptop that is powered by the mobile SoC from NVIDIA [NASDAQ:NVDA] called Tegra. The AC100 is using the Tegra 2 chipset. This chipset is already quite battery efficient and powerful. So put into a mini-laptop form factor with a mobile OS, it can become the perfect companion device to carry around. Something that is faster than a netbook’s typical full fledged OS and not as expensive or as limited (in some cases) as a tablet.

It has a 10.1inch screen with a native resolution of 1024×600 pixels, so it is not very different from your average netbook. But one good news is that it running the latest version of the mobile OS — Android 2.1. As for the battery life, Toshiba says that you can get 8 hours of life out of it with about 180 hours of stand by. Storage on the Ac100 is in the form of a 128GB SSD and memory is a 512MB of DDR2 — which probably the maximum memory for any Android device right now.

The only worry right now is that this OS was built for touchscreen devices. So this probably not the right form factor for it.


Intel Shows Off MeeGo 1.0

Intel’s Developer Forum is now being held in Beijing and the company is seizing this opportunity to show off its latest attempt at entering the mobile and netbook computing industry in a bigger way — MeeGo. MeeGo is the result of a cross-pollination between Intel’s Moblin and Nokia’s Maemo 5. If you don’t remember this from this years MWC — both companies abandoned their respective nascent mobile OS projects in favor of this joint venture that they call MeeGo.

MeeGo works on a cross platform QT framework that is commonly used for app development in Linux environments. Intel showed of it’s own iteration of MeeGo and it looked like the UI has remained much the same as it was on Moblin. So this makes us wonder if Nokia will also make their version have the same UI as Maemo and only share the framework that ties the two as one. But in that case, the apps that they share in common might look a bit out of place on one or both.

Intel displayed multiple deployments of the MeeGo 1.0 – TV, netbook, mobile phone and kiosk. The demoes reportedly displayed the ability to sync up with each other and pull media files and play them back from the point where they were left off on the other device.

Embedded above is the video of MeeGo running on a 1.6 GHz Intel Atom netbook. The UI uses tabs to separate major zones like real time social networking updates, applications, contacts, etc. The switching looks fast enough for a 1.6 GHz netbook but it remains to be seen how well it performs on less powerful devices under real life conditions.

MeeGo will be tied to both Nokia’s Ovi Store and Intel’s AppUp store based on what kind of a device it is running on. Consumers can get their hands on MeeGo phones later this year with the latest N900 and LG GW990 running on it.