As the name suggests, Toshiba’s new line of Encore 2 Write tablets places a heavy emphasis on handwritten notes, as well as drawing. Both the mid-size and full-size models come equipped with a TruePen Stylus. However, the added writing ability also comes with a significant price increase.
Where Toshiba was looking to make a play for the entry-level consumer market with its original Encore 2 line (starting at $150), the company is clearly looking to expand into the mid-range market with the more expensive Encore 2 Write line. The 8-inch version is $349.99, and 10.1-inch one sells for $399.99.
It’s hard to talk about the Encore 2 Write series without first talking about its new digitizer pen. The TruPen, as Toshiba calls it, utilizes Wacom Feel technology, featuring 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity.
While testing the tablet at CES 2015, we were impressed by how natural the pen felt. The sleek writing utensil has great balance and fits comfortably in the hand. Even more impressive, the device operates like a real-life pen, creating larger thicker lines when more pressure is applied.
Equipped with a clip, the stylus neatly tucks into the tablet for easy storage.
Similar to what Microsoft did with the Surface Pro 3, Toshiba offers a robust software package alongside its device — including the ability to launch Toshiba’s note taking app TruNote directly from the stylus itself. The application is feature rich with support for a variety of different projects, and the capability to dictate handwritten notes, and alter font styles and colors. The app even allows users to search through notes for individual words, phrases, or even shapes.
TruCapture utilizes the tablet’s 8 MP rear-facing camera to process images of words and shapes into editable files. While testing out the device first hand, a Toshiba rep demonstrated the app by taking a picture of a newspaper clipping and transferring the text to a word document. TruCapture shows particular promise for students with the ability to pull entire passages from text books or quickly copy notes directly off the white board.
Finally, the company showcased its audio recording software TruRecorder, which allows users to quickly record conversations, and is able to identify each unique voice signature, making it perfect for recounting meetings or interviews.
Where the Toshiba Encore 2 Write series truly shines is all its additional features, but the actual tablets are less exciting. Both models come equipped with 1280 x 800 resolution IPS touchscreens, are powered by Intel Atom processors, with 2 GB or RAM, and have 64 GB of storage. Each tablet is outfitted with a microSD card slot supporting upwards of 128 GB of additional storage, along with a Micro-USB and Micro-HDMI ports. According to Toshiba, both units offer upwards of 11 hours of battery life as well.
These models hit store shelves today.