Toshiba Satellite U920T review

Can Toshiba's hybrid take the market by storm?

Toshiba Satellite U920T
Ooh, slidey

TechRadar Verdict


  • +

    Long battery

  • +

    Nice laptop design

  • +

    Decent connectivity

  • +



  • -


  • -


  • -

    Dull screen

  • -

    Lack of refinement

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The hybrid laptop-tablet form factor has well and truly kicked off, and you'd be hard pressed to walk into your local electronics superstore and find a bog-standard laptop between the rows of flipping, sliding, swivelling, touchscreen, Windows 8 hybrids.

The Toshiba Satellite U920t is the Japanese company's interpretation of a single device that crosses the laptop and tablet divide.This convertible Ultrabook starts as a flat 12.5-inch tablet before the screen slides back and lifts up to transform it into a traditional laptop.

There's been no stand-out design or winning form factor in the hybrid's race to public acceptance, so manufacturers are still producing wildly different designs. Other such touchscreen Windows PCs are the Sony Vaio Duo 11, Dell XPS 12, Asus Taichi and Asus Vivobook S200, to name but a few.

Toshiba Satellite U920t review

At £899/AU$1,699/US$1,149, the Toshiba is well priced for a hybrid Ultrabook, undercutting the Dell XPS 12 and Sony Vaio Duo 11 significantly.

It's designed for anyone who wants the portability of a tablet and access to a range of apps. Windows 8 comes with its own marketplace for apps, which is filling up fast. There are over 20,000 available, with new titles being added all the time.

However, unlike Android tablets and iPads, hybrids such as the Toshiba Satellite U920t operate like a normal PC. This means you can run full apps such as Photoshop or Microsoft Office.

Toshiba Satellite U920t review

This offers a genuine option for people who don't want to carry two devices, and puts the hybrid form factor in a race for supremacy against the software ecosystems of ARM-based competition.

The Satellite U920t's 12.5-inch screen sits back flat when closed. It feels weighty, at 1.5kg (3.3lbs), but it's comparable to the likes of the Dell XPS 12. Frankly, it's too heavy to be used comfortably in the same way you'd use an iPad or Android tablet, and this will colour people's opinions immediately.

However, being a dubious tablet is somewhat remedied by its excellent transition to laptop mode. Slide the screen back and it looks like most other laptops - and you get all the benefits, too.

Toshiba Satellite U920t review

The full QWERTY keyboard is larger than the Sony Vaio Duo 11, and conveniently there's a full trackpad with two click buttons, which is extremely useful when the touchscreen won't suffice.

It's unrealistic to judge the Toshiba Satellite against Ultrabooks and the iPad, and you'll read many reviews which do just that. However, the question is whether the Toshiba Satellite U920t can be more portable, usable and convenient than its competitors and can it persuade anyone to leave their iPad at home.