Toshiba's new tablet is the most affordable keyboard-equipped Windows 8.1 slate yet. For just $299, you get a 10-inch tablet with decent performance, good battery life and a full keyboard dock. Its performance won't blow you away — the tablet's 1.33-GHz quad-core Intel Atom with 1GB of RAM offers just enough power for everyday tasks such as browsing the Web and managing your email inbox. But it's a bargain for users with only basic computing needs. Check out a full review of the 10-inch Toshiba Encore 2 on our sister site Laptop Mag, or read on for three features that make it good for work.
For the price, you won't find another 10-inch laptop-tablet hybrid running Windows 8.1. The $299 version of the Toshiba Encore 2 includes a snap-on keyboard dock for extended typing sessions, making it worth a look for budget-minded business users. In comparison, the ASUS Transformer Book T100, another affordable keyboard-equipped Windows 8.1 tablet, will cost you $349, though it offers better battery life than Toshiba's tablet. You can also buy the Toshiba Encore 2 without a keyboard for $269.
The Encore 2 ships with a free copy of Microsoft Office 2013, which includes the full desktop versions of Word, OneNote, Excel and PowerPoint. Plus, it includes a free one-year subscription to Office 365, which adds extra features like cloud backup, so you can access your documents from anywhere. That's a big perk for anyone who needs to create, edit and view documents, spreadsheets and slideshows for work.
Toshiba's tablet has a bevy of ports and connectivity options, including an SD card slot to expand the tablet's 32GB of onboard storage by up to 128GB; a micro HDMI port for business presentations; and a microUSB 2.0 port for connecting accessories such as a mouse, keyboard or external hard drive.