toshiba t1100
                       The Toshiba T1100

The Toshiba T1100 also described as “the world’s first mass-market laptop computer” was a laptop manufactured by Toshiba in April 1985.

It became a dominating force in the computing industry. The laptop weighed a whopping 4.1 kilograms with a 4.77 MHz processor and 256KB of Ram. Promotional material at the time considered the laptop as compact, small and light enough to fit into a  briefcase.  

Original Price :  $1,899 USD (1985)
Today’s Price  :  $4,424 USD (2018) 

Toshiba T1100: Overview

Manufacturer :  Toshiba
Release Date :  1985 (34 years ago)
Display :  Monochrome LCD / Text mode- 80×25
Resolution :  640×200
Operating System :  Toshiba MS-DOS 2.11
CPU :  Intel 80C88 at 4.77 MHz
RAM  :  256 kB (upgradable to 512 kB)
Storage :  Internal 3.5″ floppy drive, 720 kB/                                                    external 5.25″ floppy drive, 360 kB
Battery :  Internal rechargeable NiCD battery pack
Input :  keyboard 83 keys, QWERTY
Dimensions :  12.2″ X 2.6″ X 12″
Weight :  4.1 kg

Toshiba T1100: Technical specifications

Its technical specifications were comparable to the original IBM PC desktop, using floppy disks (it had no hard drive), a 4.77 MHz Intel 80C88 CPU (a variation of the Intel 8088), 256 kB of conventional RAM extendable to 512 kB, and a monochrome LCD capable of displaying 80×25 text and 640×200 CGA graphics.


advertisement of toshiba t1100
               Advertisement of Toshiba T1100

In April 1985, Toshiba released the world’s first laptop PC, the T1100, in Europe. The company had given up on the PC business in the U.S., and the Japanese market at the time was dominated by the NEC PC-98 computer lineup, which was not compatible with Toshiba’s machine. The T1100 was an innovative product but had some problems. It used a 3.5-inch floppy disk drive, not the 5-inch type more commonly in use. The machine was also not very affordable (costing around 500,000 yen). Some people thought that it was too early to launch the product, but the head of Toshiba’s PC business in Europe believed in the potential of laptop PCs and strongly promoted their sales. He convinced customers, leading software makers, and sales agents that desktop computers would soon be replaced by laptop computers. He was able to achieve an annual sales target of 10,000 machines, a feat that was remarkable for Toshiba’s PC division at that time.

flyers of toshiba t1100
                   Flyers of Toshiba T1100

Encouraged by the success of the T1100 in Europe, Toshiba started selling laptop PCs in the U.S. and Japan the following year. The T1100 was modified and renamed the T1100Plus, and the even more advanced T3100 (J-3100 in Japan) was developed in 1986. The T3100 was equipped with the latest technologies, including a plasma display and a hard disk drive. The product earned wide acclaim as the “king of laptops” immediately after it was put on the market, and won a number of awards.

Through its technical innovation, Toshiba continued to lead the portable PC market, and was also able to make major contributions to the component market. In 1989, the company received the Okochi Memorial Production Award from the Okochi Memorial Foundation for these new technologies.




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