Fujitsu has managed to hit that sweet
spot with their LifeBook T4010 convertible tablet PC. Weighing
in at 4.6 lbs. with dimensions similar to other highly
portable convertibles, the LifeBook manages to pack in an optical
drive, card reader and all the ports you'd expect to see on a
serious notebook. While most compact Windows XP Tablet PC Edition
notebooks have no internal CD or DVD drive, Fujitsu managed to
fit that all important drive into their design.
The LifeBook T4010's respectable
specs are significantly better than the T3010 which it replaces.
This Centrino-based notebook has a 1.6GHz Intel Dothan M725 processor,
512 megs of RAM, and a 60 gig hard drive. Running
Windows XP Tablet PC Edition 2005, the LifeBook has a 12.1 XGA
display which you can write and draw on using the included pen.
The T4010 is a convertible model, which means you can use it
as a conventional notebook, or swivel the display and lay it
flat against the keyboard to use it like a virtual pad of paper
or tablet. If you want to learn more about Windows XP Tablet
Edition notebook features and specs, click here
to read our guide.
The T4000 series include several configurations
with a list price range starting at $1,599 for a model with no
optical drive, and going over $2,200 for a unit with the faster
1.8GHz Intel 745 processor, internal DVD burner. Fujitsu offers
the T4000 series with an indoor wide viewing angle display, and
you can upgrade to an indoor/outdoor wide angle display or an SXGA+
indoor display. We received the Intel 725 1.6GHz model with the
wide view indoor display, DVD/CD-RW optical drive, 512 megs of
RAM and a 60 gig hard drive for review.
In the Box
Fujitsu includes a few nice extras with the T4010,
such as two screen protectors (peel off the blue protective backing before
using), a pen tether, weight saver insert should you wish to carry the
tablet without the optical drive inserted in the media bay, a full set
of CDs, including restore, drivers, application CDs for Bluetooth, WinDVD
5 and RecordNow. And of course you get the notebook itself, a pen, Lithium
Ion battery, charger, printed manual and modem cable.
As stated, the T4010 sports a convertible design making
it perfect for those who need to do serious typing at times but also
want to make use of the display's digitizer to take handwritten notes
or to do graphic art work. Flip open the lid and use the LifeBook as
a standard laptop, and swivel the display panel on its center circular
hinge to lay the display flat facing up for use as a tablet.
The top half of the notebook which houses the display
is finished in matte charcoal, while the bottom half of the clamshell
is silver with a faint blue tint and has charcoal accents. The keyboard
is a tad lighter than the silver body, making it easier to find the keys
in poorly lit environments. The LifeBook is neither a looker nor an ugly
duckling, and its curved corners give it a pleasingly modern appearance.
The Fujitsu T4010 feels and looks solid and well made.
A small but sturdy round swivel hinge affixes the display
to the notebook, and there are the usual shortcut keys surrounding the
display bezel as well as a mic port to make tablet use sans keyboard
do-able. The EMR pen nests to the left of the display and the power button
lives in the lower right corner, also easily accessible when the notebook
is in tablet mode. The status LCD panel, standard on many Fujitsu notebooks
made in the last decade, lives just below the display on the bezel and
informs you of charging status, hard disk activity, WiFi activity and
The optical drive, in our case a DVD/CD-RW, is on the
right side of the unit and fits into the media bay. You can swap out
the drive for a space-saver insert to reduce weight by approx. 8 ounces,
or place a secondary battery in the slot for increased runtimes. The
PC Card slot and SmartCard reader are on the right side of the T4010
, as are the WiFi on/off switch, one 4 pin unpowered FireWire port and
a USB 2.0 port. The second USB port is located on the rear, as are the
RJ11 modem jack, power jack, IR port, RJ45 Ethernet port and VGA port.
Rubber covers protect the Ethernet and VGA ports only. Somewhat anemic
sounding stereo speakers flank left and right front edge, and you'll
find easily accessible headphone, mic jacks along with the card reader
The docking port connection and battery are located
on the notebook's bottom, and there are two doors retained by small philips
head screws for the hard drive and memory slots. The LifeBook has three
small ventilation grills on the bottom and a fan outlet on the rear of
the left side. When the unit first boots up or wakes from sleep, the
fan comes on full power and is quite loud. When used unplugged with the
processor speed automatically stepped down, the fan doesn't come on often
during actual use. If you use the T4010 plugged in with the CPU going
strong, then the fan will run and isn't exactly quiet.
Like all Windows XP Tablets, the machine comes with
a EMR pen which you'll use to write and draw on the screen. Unlike PDAs,
you must use the special stylus and your fingers and PDA styli won't
work with tablets. The digitizer works very well on the T4010: it's accurate,
smooth and is great for pressure sensitive applications such as Painter.
The two button (plus scroll rocker) touch pad nestled in the wrist rest
is a handy fallback when using the LifeBook in notebook mode.
Horsepower: Processor, RAM and Drives
The Fujitsu LifeBook T4010 has a 1.6GHz Intel M725
Dothan processor and uses Centrino technology and the Intel 855GME chipset.
A 1.8GHz Intel M745 processor is available as an option for those with
a need for speed. Both processors have a 400MHz front side bus and 2
megs of level 2 cache. The T4010 comes with 512 megs of 333 MHz DDR RAM
and you can order configurations with more RAM. The notebook has two
standard SO DIMM RAM slots, with the 512 meg SO DIMM in one slot and
the other slot available, so you need not discard RAM to upgrade memory.
By current tablet standards, these are average CPU
and RAM specs. You'll find that Centrino technology is used in most tablet
and top tier subnotebooks and it offers a great performance to power
consumption ratio. For those who don't follow processors closely, Intel's
Pentium M used in Centrino configurations offer excellent performance,
outclassing Mobile Pentium 4 processors, in part thanks to the large
level 2 cache. So a 1.6GHz Centrino Pentium M competes with a 2.6GHz
Pentium 4, yet generates less heat and uses much less power which means
longer runtimes. The T4010 feels fast and responsive using business applications
such as MS Office, and works well for graphics applications such as Photoshop
and Painter when file sizes are under 20 megs. The machine's integrated
graphics rather than CPU speed affect speeds when working with larger
graphics files. That isn't to say that the Fujitsu grinds to a halt when
applying a filter to a 25 meg PSD file, but rather you will notice short
delays. How about gaming? The internal CDROM makes gaming on the go very
tempting, but don't count on playing Half Life 2 on the T4010 (again
it's the graphics card that holds the machine back). That said, it will
work fine for older or less demanding games in the Diablo tradition or
RTS games like Rise of Nations.
The Fujitsu T4010's internal optical drive is a strong
selling point in a tablet that weighs in at 4.6 pounds. Tablets in this
weight class generally use external USB or FireWire optical drives, which
increase cost and weight. Our T4010 came with a DVD/CD-RW drive and includes
WinDVD 5 for DVD playback and RecordNow! 7 for burning CDs. When customizing
your purchase on Fujitsu's web site you can order the machine with no
optical drive, a DVD drive, DVD/CD-RW or a DVD burner. Do you need
an optical drive on the road? If you'd like to watch DVDs on the plane,
burn PowerPoint presentations or backups on the road, then you do. Having
used my Toshiba
with an external drive for the past year, I can tell you it's nice to
not carry a second piece of gear or factor the external optical drive
into the total price. Fujitsu's Tablet Controls control panel applet
warns you that using the CD/DVD drive in undocked tablet mode may result
in damage to the drive or media. By default it locks the drive when the
unit is in tablet mode. . . interesting. This means you won't be able
to open the drive tray or use a CD or DVD when the unit is in tablet
mode. The control panel places a locked CD icon in the taskbar as a reminder.
You can bypass the locking feature using the control panel applet, but
apparently you'll be doing so at your own risk.
Our T4010 came with a 60 gig 4,200 RPM Toshiba MK6025GAS
hard drive. This is a standard 2.5" notebook drive that's 9.5mm
in height. Should you wish to upgrade the hard drive, it's easily accessible
via a door on the bottom of the LifeBook. A less expensive configuration
includes a 40 gig 4,200 RPM hard drive and you can customize the unit
with an 80 gig 5,400 RPM hard drive when ordering from Fujitsu's
web site. Performance fiends might want a 7,200 RPM drive but the standard
offerings will be sufficient for most users and will result in a quieter
machine. All machines use an Intel ultra ATA controller.
Graphics and Sound
The LifeBook T4010 uses Intel's integrated 855GM Graphics
controller with 64 megs of shared memory and Intel's Extreme Graphics
2 drivers. While this won't put the notebook on serious gamers' short
lists, the graphics card, a staple of the Centrino architecture, is more
than adequate for graphics work with images less than 20 megs in size,
light gaming and watching DVDs or web-based movies. If you want a tablet
with a serious graphics card and lots of dedicated memory, check out
Toshiba's new Tecra M4 which should ship by the end of May 2005. The
M4 is available with NVIDIA GeForce Go 6200 TE 64 meg or 6600
TE 128 meg graphics cards which is very impressive by tablet standards.
In terms of graphics, the T4010 performs on par with standard Centrino
notebooks using the same graphics processor and much better than first
and some second generation tablets which lagged behind their non-tablet
Most XP tablets run at XGA 1024 x 768 resolution in
32 bit color, as does our stock T4010. The Toshiba
Portege M205 was
the first to offer higher resolution in a small package and now Fujitsu
offers an SXGA+ resolution option for $150 more. Certainly this is a
worthwhile upgrade unless your eyes aren't what the used to be (the screen
dimensions remain the same, so everything on-screen will appear smaller
when increasing resolution).
The 12.1" display is reasonably bright and sharp— and
while it doesn't look as good as mid to high end traditional notebook
displays, it compares favorably with contemporary tablets from competing
manufacturers. The Fujitsu features a wide viewing angle (160 degrees)
as part of the standard package: you need not sit directly in front of
the LCD to get a sharp and colorful image. Though the same can be said
of my M205's display, the Fujitsu indeed does have an even wider viewing
angle. Like all notebook displays, the Fujitsu washes out when used outdoors
in bright sunlight. Fujitsu offers a $50 indoor/outdoor viewable screen
option which is invaluable for those who must use the machine outdoors.
The T4010 detects when you switch the machine from
standard notebook to tablet mode or vice versa, and automatically
changes the display orientation. If you wish, you can change the default
portrait and landscape orientations using the Fujitsu Tablet Controls
To improve voice recognition, which is a standard Windows
XP Tablet Edition feature, Fujitsu incorporates a dual array mic with
noise canceling and echo suppression, which indeed works well. The unit's
front firing stereo speakers aren't anything to write home about, which
can be said of many non-multimedia notebooks. Use a good set of headphones
or external speakers if you want to listen to DVDs in style or enjoy
MP3s in high fidelity. The T4010 has a SigmaTel STAC9753A AC-97 compliant
sound card, standard 3.5 mm headphone and mic jacks.
Networking: WiFi, Bluetooth, Ethernet and a
The Fujitsu comes standard with WiFi 802.11b/g
wireless networking and uses Intel's PRO/Wireless 2200BG network
card. This seemingly ubiquitous Intel offering is reliable and
offers good range in the LifeBook. We used Windows XP's connection
manager to work with WiFi connections and had no problems. To
turn on WiFi, use the slider switch on the side of the tablet.
This switch turns on both WiFi and Bluetooth and there are no
discrete controls to turn on/off each radio.
For those who live the wired life, the 10/100/1000
gigabit Ethernet will be sure to please. Just plug an Ethernet
cable into the notebook's RJ45 jack and you're ready to go. Have
modem-only access at the hotel or home? Like most notebooks,
the T4010 has a built-in 56k modem for dial up Internet access.
The LifeBook T4010 comes with integrated Bluetooth
and uses the Toshiba Bluetooth stack, software and drivers. For
some reason, the Bluetooth software isn't pre-loaded, so you'll
need to install it using the included CD ROM. Thankfully, the
machine doesn't use Windows XP Service Pack 2 drivers from Microsoft
which are very bare bones and not the easiest to work with. Once
you install the Bluetooth drivers, the Bluetooth hardware will
appear and you'll see icons on the desktop and taskbar for managing
connections. You'll use Toshiba's Bluetooth Wizard to create
new connections and the software supports profiles such as DUN
(dial up networking), ad hoc networking, headset, fax, serial
port and OBEX information exchange.
The T4010 comes with a six cell 4,800 mAh Lithium
Ion battery. That's quite a high capacity for a standard battery
though the unit gets average runtimes by Centrino standards, lasting
us an average of 3.5 hours with WiFi turned on and the screen set
to 50% brightness. Of course, that's much batter than notebooks
using mobile Pentium 4 processors, so we aren't complaining. If
you need longer runtimes, you can purchase a 3,800 mAh Lithium
Ion battery which fits in the media bay in place of the CD drive.
Or you can buy a spare standard battery if you need the optical
drive when on the go. The tablet ships with a world charger.
The unit comes with Windows XP Tablet Edition
2005, which includes MS Journal, a great virtual pad of paper application.
You can use Journal to write on most any kind of document. Say
you want to mark up a web page and circle some interesting elements
before sending it to a colleague. Simply choose Print from IE and
select the MS Journal printer. It will create a copy of that page
in Journal format, on which you can write and draw to your heart's
content. When you email that annotated page, Journal includes the
original URL, so your colleague can visit that page on the web.
Fujitsu includes a full version of Microsoft OneNote 2003 and
software for burning CDs, DVDs (if the tablet has a DVD burner)
and WinDVD 5 for DVD playback. We're happy to report that recovery
CDs are included, should you need to re-install the OS and applications,
as CDs of included 3rd party software and drivers.
The Pen and Voice Experience
Handwriting recognition, digital ink technology,
voice dictation and voice command are built into the tablet operating
system. A better built-in mic can improve voice recognition, and
the Fujitsu LifeBook T4010 does well thanks to the dual array mic.
Handwriting recognition and the new TIP (tablet input panel) on
Windows XP Tablet Edition 2005 are much improved over the original
versions and are a joy to use. Tablet Edition is built on Windows
XP Professional and owners of the first tablet edition can upgrade
to 2005 by downloading Windows XP Service Pack 2 from Microsoft.
Tablet Edition 2005 offers even
better integration with MS Office 2003 and OneNote. Do
make sure to get a copy of Office 2003-- the tablet enhancements
are superb. And give the included OneNote a try: it's excellent.
How do you write on screen? The TIP (tablet input panel) will open anywhere
you tap in a document of most any kind. Tap (or hover, depending on your
preference setting) with the pen, and you'll see a little icon appear.
That's the new dynamic floating tip.
Tap on the TIP to open it up and start
writing. As you write and come to the end of a line in
the TIP, it automatically creates a second line so you
can continue writing. In fact, it will keep opening lines
as needed until you run out of screen real estate.
As you write, the tablet will turn
your writing into text, and show you what it thinks you've
written. Simply tap on any of these words to correct
them as needed. When you tap on a recognized word, the
new TIP will show several alternate word choices, or
you can write over any letter in your word to correct
it. If you've ever used Decuma on the Sony Clie or Pocket
PC, the concept is similar.
If you prefer ink writing for fast
note taking, Windows Journal, which is included with
every XP Tablet allows you to write on virtual sheets
of paper. Journal offers several pen thicknesses, a highlighter,
various colors and has an eraser. You can even return
to your desk after a meeting and highlight the writing
in Journal to have the tablet recognize it and turn it
into text. While not 100% accurate, the feature works
reasonably well and a spell checker can clean up most
Above: the new TIP which opens anywhere
you wish. New input lines are added as necessary and the
recognized words appear below your handwriting.
Windows XP Tablets come
with voice recognition capabilities that works reasonably well.
Before you use speech, you must spend approximately 10 minutes
doing an initial voice training exercise with the machine.
After that, you can choose to read aloud excerpts from classic
works to put in more training time, which is supposed to improve
accuracy. The Fujitsu fared better than several other tablets
using the built-in mic for voice recognition.
A lightweight and compact convertible tablet:
our favorite kind! It's light enough to use as a virtual pad
of paper yet includes a DVD drive reducing the number of peripherals
you must purchase and carry. The T4010 performs well when using
business and Internet applications and can handle Adobe Photoshop
and Painter too. If you're a professional graphics artist, you
might want to consider a tablet with a higher end graphics card
and dedicated memory, but the machine is perfect for working with
web graphics in Photoshop and painting on digital canvases in Painter.
The T4010 has plenty of ports, both WiFi and Bluetooth and a card
reader. The wide viewing angle screen is a pleasure and the SXGA+
higher resolution display option only adds $150 to the price. You
won't be left wanting.
Pro: Internal optical drive, strong performance,
decent battery life, modular media bay, WiFi 802.11b/g, Bluetooth,
card reader and FireWire. Digitizer is accurate, responsive and
pressure sensitive. Standard configuration offers a speedy Dothan
processor and ample RAM. Dual array mic improves voice recognition.
SmartCard slot and BIOS security for the security-conscious.
active matrix color LCD, 64K colors. Resolution:
1024 x 768. 24 bit color capable
of displaying 16.7 million colors. Intel 855GM
integrated graphics chipset, Intel
Extreme Graphics 2 driver software. Wide Angle
(160 degree) indoor display standard, wide angle indoor/outdoor
display and SXGA+ indoor display options available.
mAh 6 cell Lithium Ion rechargeable. Optional additional
3,800 mAh battery may be purchased for use in media
bay in place of the optical drive.
Dothan 725 processor running at 1.6GHz. 1.8GHz Intel
745 processor also available. Intel Centrino technology,
Intel 855GME 400MHz chipset. CPU has 64KB on-die
cache and 2 meg level 2 cache. Uses standard 333MHz
DDR SO DIMMs (2 slots) for RAM.
x 9.61 x 1.38 inches. Weight: approximately 4.6 pounds
with optical drive.
in stereo speakers, dual array mic with noise canceling
and echo suppression, 3.5mm standard stereo headphone
jack and external microphone jack. SigmaTel STAC9753A
sound card (AC-97 compliant).
USB 2.0 ,
1394 (FireWire), Modem (RJ-11), Ethernet (RJ-45),
VGA-out, Infrared (IrDA-compatible, 4 Mbps). Headphone
and microphone, docking
port, one Cardbus PCMCIA
XP Tablet PC Edition 2005 (aka Windows XP Tablet
Edition 2002 running SP2). Microsoft OneNote 2003,
Acrobat Reader, Fujitsu Hot Key Utility,
MS Reader. Toshiba Bluetooth software included with Bluetooth
models. WinDVD 5 and RecordNow! 7 on DVD/CD-RW models,
Intervideo WinDVD Creator Plus on DVD burner
PCMCIA slot (Cardbus), 1 SmartCard slot, 1 card reader
slot for SD and Memory Stick cards.