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Day 4 - IFA International

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  • September
  • Tablets
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20 Exclusive

20 Exclusive Interview

Exclusive Interview Steve Crawley After several years working as a mainframe engineer, Steve went back to university and consequently obtained an Honours Degree in Politics and History at Warwick University, subsequently moving back to work once more within the mainframe computer industry. This was followed by product marketing functions with several PC vendors. He joined Toshiba in 1998, initially as Product Marketing Manager with the UK subsidiary. Steve then moved to Toshiba Europe in 2007, where he became responsible for the hardware side of non-traditional computing devices in 2010. Tablets for High-End Users Toshiba aims to increase market share, but not at the expense of product quality The tablet market may well be dominated by certain brands, but it is also big enough to have space for more. Steve Crawley, Toshiba's Senior Manager for tablet product development told IFA International about his ambitions… Toshiba’s new tablets Following the Thrive and the Excite, Toshiba is back with three new Excite models, which offer a more mainstream take on the tablet than previous models.. The Toshiba Excite 7.7 and Excite 10 are Tegra 3-powered tablets with Android 4.0, plus a case that's slim and, according to Steve Crawley, robust. The Excite 13 is one of the biggest tablets currently on the market. Toshiba Reorganises Digital Products Facilities Toshiba is implementing a reorganisation of its Digital Products business facilities in Japan aimed at enhancing the operating efficiency and performance of its Digital Products businesses. Within the year, the LCD TV design and development function at the Fukaya Complex will be transferred to the Ome Complex in western Tokyo, Toshiba's development hub for PC and tablets. This integration will allow product developers to draw on TV, PC and tablet technologies and accelerate development of fusion products for the global market.Excite 13 is one of the biggest tablets currently on the market. [ Interview by Richard Barnes ] Here at Toshiba, we believe that the market is large enough to accommodate both large and small players in a viable system, offering users a range of different options at different price points. We are and will remain one of those manufacturers, offering quality products, at different price points and with various form factors. Our ambition is to continue to increase our market share, but not at the expense of the quality of the product, nor the sustainability of the business. IFA is traditionally a CE show. How would you define tablets? IT? CE? HE? Convergence is a much used, and somewhat abused term in all the above industries. However, tablets do seem to truly represent that convergence, with considerable IT power delivering good looking and easily used computing devices to consumers. As such, we consider it fair to treat tablets equally as IT, CE and HE devices. What are the key USPs that differentiate your products in the market? We make well-engineered products, that are based on “We make well-engineered products, that are based on almost 30 years of mobile computing engineering experience” almost 30 years of mobile computing engineering experience, and we’re proud that they deliver longevity and reliability. Our devices feature extensive connectivity options, alongside well-designed applications, that offer the user seamless connections to the Internet and to the users’ CE devices at home. We also distinguish ourselves with class-leading thin and light designs, incorporating multiple I/O solutions in order to ensure users are able to add additional flash memory, or connect to other CE devices using industry standard cables. How do you see the tablet market developing in the next three years? The tablet market will grow exponentially over the next few years, and as it matures it will be based upon two or three OS variants, but will also deliver a variety of screen formats (although with 10” still representing the largest proportion of sales), and it will increasingly feature a wide set of price points. Steve Crawley Senior Product Development Manager, Toshiba What will be the key driving factors for continued sales of these products? A very large proportion of tablet sales will be price led, but there will also be significant sales of “CE Jewellery”, based on desirable form factors and design, and bought by users prepared to pay a little more for that designer look. Another significant factor will be the durability or ruggedness of these devices, especially for use in education and in areas like heavy industry. We expect that both sectors will purchase tablets in large numbers over the coming months and years. Hall 21 Stand 101 www.ifa-international.org IFA International • Monday 3 rd September 2012 21

IFA International