Asus Eee Pad Transformer
Honeycomb hybrid with docking done right?
Hands On Asus has been showcasing its Eee Pad Transformer Android 3.0 tablet this week, Transformer being the word the company uses to highlight this 10.1in, 1280 x 800 tablet’s hybrid design that will turn it into a netbook in the click of a dock.
Only last week, Acer was showing off its own interpretation of the tab-book, which left many scratching their heads as to why you couldn’t close its W500 Windows tablet on top of the keyboard – it needs to be undocked first. At least Asus seems to have thought this one through. Slot the tablet into the clasp of the keyboard dock, lock it in place from a single latch and that’s it. The hinged dock holds the tablet neatly and the two halves close together without the need for any latching at the front, just like what you’d expect, really.
The Eee Pad itself is based around Nvidia’s dual-core Tegra 2 chip and features 1GB of memory with either 16-32GB of storage and Micro SD card expansion. Other interfacing includes a headphone/mic audio jack and a sync/charging port and a mini HDMI interface. There are two cameras – 5Mp autofocus on the back and a forward facing 1.2Mp model.
In the dock: Eee Pad Transformer
Battery life is rated at 9.5 hours but the keyboard dock contains an additional 24.4Wh lithium polymer battery that charges the tablet extending the on-the-road use to 16 hours, on a good day. The keyboard is typical netbook size and features a multitouch trackpad, it also features two USB ports and an SD card reader, but no Ethernet. The tablet supports 2.4GHz 802.11n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.1+EDR, plus motion sensing, a compass and GPS, but no 3G networking.
Next page: All fingers and thumbs
Rip off britain
It's only $400 in the US for the 16GB version
Which is about £250
"The 1280 x 800 touchscreen sports "ten-finger" multitouch"
I can hear the lawyers in Norfolk drawing up discrimination cases already.
Return of the eeePC
Well well, this looks nice and the price isn't tooo bad.
Linux (in the form of Android) would appear to be back!
BTW I've often wonderd how these thing do with office docs etc.....
Now where's the girl?
Down-voted for that?
Someone needs to check out their insecurity rating....
I may have to sell my iPad...
I quite liked the uber-cheapo ePad I picked up a while ago (ZT 180 v2; £130). However, the battery life was appalling; there were no power-saving features built in, so if you didn't physically switch it off after use, it'd be drained flat after an hour or so. So I flogged it and bought a 16gb iPad in Apple's pre-iPad 2 sale.
To be fair, the iPad works well - I'm using it for casual browsing and ebook/cbr reading. And the battery life is fantastic. But it feels heavily restrictive as compared to an Android machine - for instance, the way you have to dive into the settings menu to enable/disable wifi, rather than just having a one-click widget on your homepage (similar applies to having a calendar visible, temperature/bandwidth usage markers, etc).
And the virtual keyboard sucks, thanks to the way that virtually everything except A-Z has to be accessed by switching keyboard views. And you can't expand the memory: you have to sell your old iPad and buy a new one. And playing non-Apple approved media is a pain unless you convert it. And you can't just drag and drop new media onto the device, you have to go through iTunes, so I can't do the lazy thing and add stuff from the laptop in the living room; instead, I have to trudge up to the attic where the main machine lives. And...
OTOH, this thing has a decent battery life, a larger, higher-res screen (1280*800 - shame it's not 4:3) and the physical keyboard makes it a bit more practical as a carry-everywhere device, as well as boosting the battery life. And with an SD-card slot in the keyboard and a micro-SD card slot in the tablet, you can slap up to 64gb of extra storage onto the beastie, And it supports flash and 1080p media (at least according to Cnet - be interesting to find out what codecs, containers and subtitling options it supports - vob/mkv/ogg/etc?).
Give it a week or two for a few more reviews to roll in, and I suspect I'll be waving bye-bye to the iPad...