UK retailer pulls Toshiba Folio 100 tablet from stores

Toshiba's Folio 100 pulled because of high return rates

Toshiba's Folio 100.

Toshiba's Folio 100.

U.K.-based consumer electronics vendor Dixon's Retail on Monday confirmed that is has pulled Toshiba's Folio 100 tablet from store shelves because of high return rates.

The Folio tablet, which started shipping to consumers earlier this month, has been pulled from the shelves of retail stores owned by Dixon's such as PC World. The tablet has also been pulled from PC World's retail website.

"We have taken the Toshiba Folio off sale temporarily as we have had a high level of returns and we do not want to give our customers a bad experience of what is actually a very good product," wrote Simon Branney, a Dixon's spokesman, in an e-mail.

"We are working with Toshiba to identify what the issue is and hope to have a resolution very soon," Branney wrote.

When contacted, Toshiba Europe could not elaborate on the issue resulting in heavy return rates.

"Toshiba is aware of reports regarding customer returns of Folio 100 in the U.K. We are currently working with Dixon's Retail to evaluate the situation," said Gianluca Dianese, head of strategic marketing for the Europe and Middle East region at Toshiba Europe, in an e-mail.

Toshiba started shipping the Folio 100 tablet in Europe earlier this month. The Folio includes a 10.1-inch screen, and runs Google's Android 2.2 OS. It is powered by Nvidia's Tegra chip, which includes a dual-core Arm processor and a graphics core capable of playing 1080p high-definition video. Depending on the features, Toshiba said the device is priced between €399 and €529 (US$546 and $723).

This is a big setback for Toshiba, which is pushing the Folio 100 as an iPad competitor as it tries to grab share in the fast-growing tablet market. Research firm Gartner has projected tablet shipments to reach 58.4 million in 2011.

The Folio 100 tablet will not ship to the U.S., a spokesman for Toshiba America said in an e-mail on Monday. The company is planning different form factors for the U.S. market, the spokesman said, without providing further details.

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Agam Shah

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