You want a quad core Nvidia Tegra 3 Android tablet? Suddenly you've got four to choose from. The latest is the Toshiba Excite 10 Android 4.0 ICS tablet. Not to be confused with the dual core Excite 10 LE that has a dual core CPU, the Excite 10 has a 1.2GHz Tegra 3 quad core CPU with fifth companion low power core and a 12 core GeForce graphics chip. This tablet is just starting to hit stores, and the model is AT305, so you can make sure you're getting the quad core model.
The Excite 10 sells for $449 for the 16 gig model, and more expensive 32 and 64 gig models will follow. There's plenty of storage expansion here, so it's not mandatory to wait for a higher capacity model (only the 16 gig version is shipping now). The tablet, though extremely thin and light for a 10" model, manages a full size SD card slot that supports cards up to 64 gigs capacity. It also has a micro USB port with USB host capabilities (awesome), but unlike Acer with their Iconia Tab A510 , Toshiba doesn't include the micro USB to USB OTG host cable. The tablet does work with a variety of USB peripherals like keyboards, mice, flash drives, FAT32 hard drives and game controllers. It even works with USB Ethernet adapters, so Toshiba used their enterprise laptop thinking cap here and made a driver.
The tablet isn't cheap given price pressure from Asus with their Transformer Pad TF300 , but you do get quality parts and a striking design. This is one of the thinnest and lightest tablets on the market: it's a third of an inch thin and it weighs 1.33 pounds. That's as waifish as the Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime, but the straight-sided aluminum design and robust ports are a step up in ergonomics and durability.
The tablet has a 1280 x 800 capacitive multi-touch LED backlit display that's clad in Gorilla Glass. It has good color saturation, is quite bright and has wide viewing angles. We're not pining for IPS here. The bezel has a curve at the edge that makes it look like contoured glass like the HTC One series. It gives the tablet an attractive, quality look though the glass itself is flat. The sides are metal and Toshiba says the very bright patterned back is aluminum. Thanks to rolled edges on the sides, the tablet doesn't bite into your palm and it feels good in the hand.
The Toshiba Excite 10 AT305 has 1 gig of DDR3 RAM and it runs on a 1.2GHz Tegra 3 CPU. We assume it's the T30L CPU given the clock speed, but it's the fastest among Tegra 3 tablets in synthetic benchmarks. In use, the tablet feels responsive and it can handle 1080p video playback, Adobe Flash and Tegra Zone THD games well.
The tablet has a micro HDMI port, dedicated charging/dock port, micro USB host port, a 3.5mm headset jack and a full size SD card slot. It has a 2MP front camera and a mic that worked quite well in Skype, and a 5MP rear camera with LED flash that can shoot 720p video and shoot simultaneous stills.