About Computers for Newbies & Everyone Else

November 8, 2011

Take a Tablet

During the summer months I wrote several articles regarding e-book readers in general and more specifically Barnes and Noble’s Nooks (  They are both great to have if you are a reader; however, something different has come to my attention.

I was very happy to receive a gift of a tablet PC and I have to say, "I think it is great!"  I did not get an iPad, which is the most popular right now.  I received a tablet I had never heard of, the Toshiba Thrive.  Now that I am using it I think I may never use another.  It has just about everything I would look for in a tablet PC and some things I would never have thought available.

I will start with a definition just in case you are not aware of what a tablet PC is.  A "tablet" is a crossbreed type of computer.  It is a cross somewhere between a notebook computer and a smartphone…lacking the phone part. Of course, with the Thrive ( and Skype ( that isn’t exactly correct, but more on that later.  Also, it does not have a keyboard on the outside but it does have a digital one built-in.

Toshiba ThriveThe Thrive has a 10.1" high resolution touch screen.  This means that it is smaller than my 17" work notebook but larger than my 8.9" personal netbook.  This screen is great for reading a Barnes and Noble e-book (or any other brand) and watching movies or TV shows on Netflix.  Yes, you can watch other TV networks’ sites too. 

You may ask what I use my Thrive for.  I surf the net.  OK, I realize that was an obvious use.  I also check email for work and home, read the Daily News-Record, read other news sources from around the world, post my columns to, send my columns to the DNR and others for publishing, watch a TV show I missed last week, log onto my desktop computer if I need a file I don’t have on the tablet, write this column…What? Write on a tablet?

OK, in my opinion there are two disadvantages to a tablet.  First is the keyboard, which is adequate for typing an occasional short email or web address.  However, if you are typing a 500-2500 word article it is way too slow, even if you use Swype like I do.  You cannot type as fast as you can on a regular keyboard.  It is more hunt and peck; of course, if you type that way on a regular computer it will be fine for you.

Included with the Thrive is a full size USB port, so that means you can plug in most USB devices.  This includes most full sized keyboards.  You can also plug in a thumb drive for copying pictures to and from the Thrive.  Did I just say pictures?  I did and the Thrive has two cameras.  There is one camera on the back for taking photos and movies.  The other is on the front which can be used to take the user’s picture.  Why you may ask?  I will talk more about that next week.


  1. […] column about my Toshiba Thrive from last week generated several intriguing […]

    Pingback by More to Thrive On » — November 15, 2011 @ 5:58 am

  2. […] should be the final time I write about my Toshiba Thrive.  Here are the 1st and 2nd articles.  (Well, OK most likely the last one.) But two more questions about it need […]

    Pingback by Thrive, Even in the Cold » — November 22, 2011 @ 5:31 am

  3. […] the emails I received questioning me about what I had on my tablet (Toshiba Thrive) here is my personal list of Thrive apps that I am currently running, with links to each app.  […]

    Pingback by What Apps Do I Run on My Tablet? » — January 28, 2012 @ 11:09 am

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