Fujitsu Lifebook T904: A Convertible with a Smooth Ride

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Are laptops seeing the end of their era? Many would proclaim this truth to be self-evident (you don’t see the Ultrabook™ moniker tossed around as much anymore, do you?), but the end of the laptop would only signal the ushering in of something similar, because mobile computing will never die. Welcome to the age of the hybrid—convertible tablets.

"Are laptops seeing the end of their era? Many would proclaim this truth to be self-evident."

Hybrid tablets are mobile machines that try to merge the efficiency of a laptop with the ease and portability of a tablet. Some are successful, some are not. Most of that success hinges on the sacrifices made between the two; did the laptop give in on design just to make it more tablet friendly, or did the tablet become clunky and aesthetically inefficient because laptop-centric features were added?

Now, some laptops are trying to merge a third factor in: desktop-class power and performance. It’s been a long haul, best left to the major PC manufacturers, and it could be a while until we see top-of-class models. I’m talking a tablet that runs Windows 8 on a Core™ i7 processor with at least a 16GB RAM load-out and a 256GB SSD, with a dedicated graphics card for high-end gaming, while maintaining a super high-res 10-14" screen, and a price under $1,000? Yeah, I’m dreaming. For now.

While both Microsoft and Apple come close to the mark, much is to be said for manufacturers like Fujitsu, who try to bridge these gaps a step at a time. Consider the new Lifebook T904 Convertible Tablet. It marries old school and new school, in both power and design, in a way that made us sit up and notice.

Starting with the 13.3" screen, Fujitsu employs IGZO, a new screen technology developed with Sharp that offers clarity, prolonged battery life, and accurate touch sensitivity, along with better resolution rates over amorphous silicon, which is used in almost all LCD panels. What this means to you is that the WQHD 2560 x 1440 resolution screen is one of the most clear and beautiful screens you’ll see on a laptop, and even more so on a tablet. The screen is attached via a rotatable bi-directional hinge, which allows you to turn the screen and lay it flat against the keyboard, effectively turning it from an Ultrabook into a tablet.

The screen technology is also impressive. It is a dual-digitizer screen, meaning that it accepts and recognizes both finger and pen inputs from the screen. It enables the convenience of touch along with the productivity that a pen delivers so that you can play your touch-enabled games and still take notes for class or work (hopefully not at the same time). The screen also has a high-bright view option, which enhances the power of the screen when used outdoors. An integrated ambient-light sensor will help to cut down on the screen burning through your battery life.

Powering that screen is a 1.6GHz Intel® Core™ i5-4200 dual-core processor, with a maximum speed of 2.6GHz when over-clocked. This 4th-generation processor offers improved speed, low heat production, and less drain on your battery. It’s enhanced with a 3MB cache and can support DDR3L-1333/1600 MHz or LPDDR3-1333/1600 MHz RAM. This configuration includes 8GB of 1600 MHz DDRL3 RAM, which can be maxed out to 16GB.

The graphics are supplied by the integrated Intel HD Graphics 4400, which is much improved over the previous generation. Although still not capable of running high-end graphics or games, it will fit almost any other visual need quite sufficiently.

Fujitsu gets old school with the 500GB 5400 rpm hard drive, but even that is enhanced with new hybrid technology—it includes a 16GB SSD cache for speeding up and optimizing your most-frequently accessed programs and applications. Optional configurations offer SSD-only storage drives, or you could always replace the drive yourself.

"It marries old school and new school, in both power and design..."

The hard drive includes a few amenities that make this appealing to business users. It includes ShockSensor, an integrated accelerator in the drive that “senses” when the computer is about to be dropped, or if a physical shock to the system is imminent. It retracts the read/write head to a safe zone and parks it, so that the rotating platters of the drive don’t come into contact with it, resulting in a drive crash.

Another amenity that business users will appreciate is the inclusion of a Smart Card slot and embedded TPM 1.2 security. The Smart Card allows you to store passwords and security clearances used by large enterprises and government agencies, effectively locking out anyone without access to the card. TPM (Trusted Platform Module) is a digital identification and data security protocol that allows to store private keys, passwords, and certificates for file and folder encryption. Used mainly in the health care field, where data is strictly and securely guarded, the TPM is another level of security for you. Add to this an integrated biometric fingerprint scanner and a Kensington lock slot, and you have a James Bond-esque level of security.

All of the other standard bells and whistles include dual USB 3.0 ports, one with an Anytime USB Charge, which allows you to charge a USB device even when the hybrid is turned off, 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, HDMI connectivity, and Bluetooth 4.0. Fujitsu also has a unique way of presenting the tablet’s Gigabit Ethernet port. It’s actually a pull-out, dongle-type device, which sits flush against the frame when not being used.  

Side views

For multimedia purposes, it also features dual array microphones, two built-in speakers, and an integrated Full HD webcam. The webcam is located on the top center of the screen, and uses a flashing indicator light to let you know when it’s recording—and hopefully, to avoid any “accidental” recordings of you dancing or making funny faces.

How you use this Lifebook is also a consideration, since it has been MIL-STD-810G tested for various environmental conditions, including functional shock, vehicle vibration, vibration integrity, altitude, low (cold) and high (heat) temperature, humidity, in-transit drops, and blowing dust. That doesn’t mean you should sling it around, it just means it’s been tested against those conditions.  As far as software goes, the Fujitsu Lifebook is pre-installed with Microsoft Office and McAfee Internet Security and Antivirus software to squeeze even more productivity for when this device will be used as a laptop.

And how will you use the Lifebook T904? As a laptop, it is fully functioning, with some impressive power and significant security extras. If you are in an enterprise-class department that needs a high-level business laptop to replace your outdated work laptop, this is an excellent choice. If you’re a casual business person with a need to unwind with a multimedia unit, whether on a long flight or in a far-away hotel room, you’ll appreciate the tablet functionality of this unit. Either way, you’ll have performance and aesthetics on your side with the Lifebook T904.

Fujitsu T904 Convertible Tablet
Processor Intel® Core™ i5-4200U processor (1.6 GHz, up to 2.6 GHz, 3MB) *  
Operating systems Windows 8.1 Pro 64-bit License
Genuine Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
 
Supported capacity RAM (max.) 4GB (1 module(s) 4GB) DDR3 L, 1,600 MHz, PC3-12800, SO DIMM  
Hard disk drives (internal)1 SSHD, 5400 rpm, 500GB / 16GB SSD Cache, 2.5-inch, S.M.A.R.T.  
Wireless technologies Bluetooth Bluetooth 4.0 LE
Integrated WLAN2 Intel Dual Band Wireless-N7260 a/b/g/n
WLAN encryption WEP, WPA, WPA2
WLAN max. data rate up to 300 Mbit/s
WLAN notes Import and usage according to country-specific regulations.
General system information Chipset Integrated
Chipset notes Supports iAMT 9.0, Intel vPro requires Core i5-43xx & i7-46xx CPU, Intel WLAN 7260 a/b/g/n,
TPM module
BIOS features BIOS based on Phoenix SecureCore
Display Display 33.8 cm (13.3 inch), 2560 x 1440 Pixel (WQHD), Glare IGZO touch display, 1000:1, 350cd/m2
Display notes Wide-view high-bright LED display (for enhanced outdoor viewing). With magnesium display lid. Integrated ambient light sensor for automatic backlight adjustment to the working environment.
Sensors 3-axis Accelerometer
Gyroscope
Ambient Light Sensor
Magnetic Field Sensor
Aspect ratio 16:09
Brightness – typical 350 cd/m2
Contrast - typical 1000:01:00
Digitizer 3-axis Accelerometer
Gyroscope
Ambient Light Sensor
Magnetic Field Sensor
Ambient light sensor Integrated
Ambient Light sensor notes While enabled, the ambient light sensor automatically adjusts the display backlight
Graphics Base Unit LIFEBOOK T904
TFT resolution (HDMI) up to 1920 x 1200
TFT resolution (VGA) up to 1920 x 1200
TFT resolution (DVI on Port Replicator) up to 2560 x 1600
Graphics Brand name Intel® HD Graphics 4400
Graphics features 3 Display Support
HDCP support
DirectX 11
Graphics notes Shared memory depending on main memory size and operating system
3D accelerator
Interfaces Memory card slots 1 (SD up to 2GB, SDHC up to 32GB, SDXC up to 64GB)
SmartCard slot 1
SIM card slot 1 (usable only with module) Uses (2FF) Mini-SIM card. Slot is located in the battery compartment. Contact your service provider to obtain a (2FF) Mini-SIM card.
USB 3.0 total 2 (incl. 1x Anytime USB Charge functionality)
USB 2.0 total 0
VGA 0
HDMI 1
Ethernet (RJ-45) 1 (pull out LAN connector)
DC – in 1
Audio: line-in / microphone 1 (combo port with Audio line-out)
Audio: line-out / headphone 1 (combo port with Audio line-in)
Internal microphones 0
Docking connector for Port Replicator 1
Kensington Lock support 1
Wired communications LAN Built-in 10/100/1000 MBit/s Intel® 218LM
Keyboard and pointing devices Backlit isolation keyboard
Keys: 85, key width: 19mm, keystroke: 1mm
Fingerprint sensor
Tablet Pen
Touch-screen
Multi gesture touchpad with integrated mouse button functionality
Volume Control Button
Windows Button
 
Multimedia Audio type Onboard
Audio codec Realtek ALC283
Audio features 2x digital array microphones, 2x built-in speakers (stereo)
Camera Built-in webcam (Full HD) with Status LED
Power supply AC Adapter 19 V / 65 W (3.42 A), 100 V - 240 V, 50 Hz - 60 Hz, 3-pin (grounded) slim and light AC-Adapter
Notes 90W AC Adapter for usage with Port Replicator
Rated voltage range 100 V - 240 V (AC Input)
Rated frequency range 50 Hz - 60 Hz
1st battery options Li-Ion battery 4-cell, 3150 mAh, 45 Wh
1st battery Li-Ion battery 4-cell, 45 Wh
Battery features Rapid Charge
Runtime 1st battery3 up to 9.5 hr
Battery Charging time ~ 120 min.
Dimensions / Weight / Environmental Dimensions (W x D x H) 12.64" x 9.52" x 0.67"/0.76"
Weight notes Weight may vary depending on actual configuration (including battery pack)
Operating ambient temperature 41 – 95° F (5 – 35 °C)
Operating relative humidity Running: 20 - 85%; Packed 8 - 85% (relative humidity, non-condensing)
MIL-STD-810G Built Tough4 MIL-STD-810G tested for various demanding environmental conditions, functional shock, vehicle vibration, vibration integrity, altitude, low (cold) and high (heat) temperature, humidity, transit drop, and blowing dust  
Additional Software Fujitsu Display Manager
ShockSensor Utility
Power Saving Utility
Microsoft Office (buy license to activate the pre-installed Microsoft Office)
McAfee Internet Security and Antivirus Software (60 days trial version) 
 
Manageability Manageability Technology PXE 2.1 Boot code
Wake up from S5 (off mode)
Intel vPro technology (depending on your configuration)
WoL (Wake on LAN)
iAMT 9.0 (depending on CPU)
Supported Standards WMI
PXE
Security Physical Security Kensington Lock support
System and BIOS Security User and supervisor BIOS password
Computrace BIOS persistence module
Embedded security (TPM 1.2)
User Security User and supervisor BIOS password
Preboot Authenification
Hard disk password
Integrated fingerprint sensor
Smartcard reader
Compliance FCC Part 15B Class B and FCC Part 15C; FCC Part 15E; FCC Part 22/24/27; IC ICES-003 Class B and RSS-210;
UL-cUL Listed; CE Marking; CB Generic Report, RF Human exposure Standard; ENERGY Star Qualified
(depending on your configuration) 0;
 
Warranty Standard Warranty One Year International Limited Warranty, 24/7 technical support; Fujitsu extended service plans available
Service Weblink http://www.fujitsu.com/us/support/

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At the beginning it is mentioned it is for drawing and then is never mentioned again. So, CAN YOU DRAW ON IT, HYES OR NO?

Yes. The computer's screen recognizes both finger and pen inputs from the screen. It enables the convenience of touch along with the productivity that a pen delivers so that you can play your touch-enabled games and still take notes for class or work.