When I first caught a glimpse of the Telstra T-Touch and held it in my hand, I was immediately impressed with the build quality and simple features.

I mean really – how did Steve Jobs and Samsung miss the concept of a built-in flip out table stand.  Pure genius.

I’ve taken some time in the last few weeks to look at several tablet’s on the market these days.  There is of course the Apple iPad, the Samsung Galaxy TAB (Available soon) the Millenius tablet (No, i hadn’t heard of it either) and the Telstra T-Touch to name just a few.

Key to thinking about the tablet market is to understand that in fact these are not all apples to be compared.  The iPad is likely a Mango, the Galaxy Tab an Orange, the Telstra T-Touch an Apple and perahps the Millenius is a Granny Smith Apple.  Ok that was lame, I get it:) (Oh, and yes, the Dell Streak, but really – that’s a big smartphone)

So, forget about comparisons, the Telstra T-Touch is a small 7 inch tablet computer which runs Android 2.1 – close to the latest version.  The first thing you’ll notice is the screen is not as crisp and clear as other devices, because it is not the same ‘type’ of touch screen as others, this is an older style touch screen which in fact works best with the use of the in built stylus (plastic pen) to get real accuracy on the screen.   I found when typing the T-Touch would place my finger movements lower than they really were intended, so for accuracy, I certainly recommend the stylus, it makes the scrolling and navigation a breeze.

The single most impressive thing about the T-Touch is the 10 home screens.  Android powered smartphones have long had these mulitple screens allowing a vast array of icons and widgets to be placed in easy reach.  But where the T-Touch takes it one step further is with the categorisation of those screens.  The 10 screens are separated into five categories, each with two screens.   The five categories are: HOME, WEB, ENTERTAINMENT, COMMUNICATIONS, FAVOURITES.

Telstra T-Touch Homescreens

I know it seems simple, but I have often found it a pain to locate the things I’d created Icons or widgets for.

Foxtel applications and streaming are built in, as is the ability to use the device as a phone, however, I would challenge all tablet makers and carriers to release usage data in the months ahead – which I believe will show next to no phone usage:).  Text, perhaps.  Data, most certainly.

Telstra T-Touch $299 Tablet

The T-Touch is available November 2 on pre-paid plans, and later in November for post paid.

Pre-Paid plans for the T-Touch 

Recharge Credit Data Allowance Bonus Credit (Talk & Text) Expiry
$20 250MB $5 21 DAYS
$30 700MB $7 30 DAYS
$40 1GB $10 30 DAYS
$50 3GB $10 30 DAYS
$80 4GB $10 60 DAYS
$100 6GB $15 90 DAYS
$150 10GB $20 365 DAYS

* Pre-Paid Mobile Broadband sessions charged per MB.

It’s great to see Telstra with a 1 year Data plan, something they should introduce across all their mobile devices.

This is not something for everyone.  This is something for people who want to carry the internet with them, who don’t have a huge need for the apps on other devices, but want to customise the experience and really take advantage of what you can do with the internet out and about.

With this, the iPad and likely other devices also, Telstra and their Telstra T-Life stores will have a tablet for everybody – a good strategy – given this is a staggeringly low $299.

Great value at that price in anyone’s book.

Well worth checking it out.