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Sony’s Android-powered Tablet P headed to AT&T

by Kristen Nicole

We often learn of Android devices when they launch in some faraway land. It seems Japan, China, the UK and Australia get to have all the fun, but this week we learned of a few Android devices that are making their way stateside. Sony’s Tablet P is said to be hitting AT&T shelves right now, while Toshiba’s ultra-thin Excite tablet plans to preempt the iPad 3 reveal with a U.S. launch on March 6. We also take a look at Fujitsu’s latest prototype, demoed at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this week.

Sony Tablet P

The clam-shelled Sony Tablet P was released in Japan back in October, but U.S. consumers could soon get their hands on the device in a couple of days. Leaked screenshots from an AT&T internal site hint at a March 3 release date for the Tablet P, priced at $399.99 with a two-year contract ($549.99 without). The distinctive tablet packs a 1GHz dual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor, and two 5.5-inch, 1024x480 touchscreens. Running Android 3.2 Honeycomb, look out for an Ice Cream Sandwich upgrade shortly. With the Tablet P you’ll also get 4G support, 1GB or RAM and 4GB of internal storage. If that $400 price tag seems unappealing, you may be able to save a few bucks by bundling your Tablet P contract with a 99-cent Xperia PLAY contract, totaling out at $299.99.

Toshiba Excite 10 LE

While the world holds its breath for Apple’s March 7 event, Toshiba hopes to get a head start on this year’s tablet wars with the Excite’s U.S. debut on March 6. The Wi-Fi-only tablet will cost $530 for the 16GB model, and $600 for the 32GB model. It’s a little pricier than the current iPad 2, so Toshiba certainly has a lot to prove.

The manufacturer claims the Excite is the world’s thinnest and lightest 10-inch tablet, measuring 0.3 inches (7.7mm) thick, weighing in at 1.18 pounds (535 grams). Toshiba used premium materials for the Excite, including a magnesium alloy surface and a scratch-resistant Gorilla Glass display. The screen is 10.1 inches with 1280x800 resolution. Inside you’ll find a dual-core 1.2 GHz Texas Instruments OMAP 4430 processor with 1GB of RAM. The rear camera comes in at 5-megapixels, capable of 1080p HD video recording with an LED flash, and a 2-megapixel front-facing camera for video chat. Additional perks include a headphone jack, microUSB, micro-HDMI and microSDHC. While the Excite ships with Android 3.2 honeycomb, an ICS upgrade is promised later in the year.

Fujitsu prototype Tegra 3

First displayed at CES in Las Vegas last month, Fujitsu’s latest Android prototype has come out to play at MWC. The dust-proof and waterproof quad-core smartphone doesn’t yet have a name and is months away from production, but it’s full of goodies. There’s an NVIDIA Tegra 3 under the hood, with a 4.6-inch high resolution display. There’s a whopping 13.1 megapixel camera on the rear, along with a fingerprint scanner for device security purposes. The sensor doubles as a proximity sensor, automatically turning off the display when you set it down. Running Android ICS, Fujitsu has big plans for this prototype.