The ASUS Padfone form factors have always been incredibly interesting. It's a real shame that by the time they were picked up by a US carrier, the over-the-top modular form factor was toned down to something with a lower price tag and more mass appeal. Even so, if you'd like to check out this unique phone-tablet hardware, there's no better time than the present. An eBay vendor has a refurbished version of the Padfone X mini, complete with its 7-inch tablet dock, on sale for just $99.99.
The X mini is a low-end phone that can also double as a low-end tablet. Originally released for AT&T back in October, the phone portion of the hardware is an Atom-powered candybar with a 4.5-inch 854x480 screen, 1GB of RAM, and 8GB of storage plus a MicroSD card slot. Slide it into the tablet dock and you'll have access to all your content on a 7-inch 1280x800 screen, with the phone's Android 4.4 software adjusting the user interface for the larger format. The tablet dock also boosts the phone's 2060mAh battery with a secondary 2200mAh one. The phone's 5MP rear camera pulls double duty for the tablet, but oddly, the 2MP front-facing camera on the phone is covered by a 1MP shooter on the dock.
This particular model is refurbished, which saves you about $50 from the off-contract price at Amazon and Wal-Mart. The unlocked phone should work with SIM cards from other GSM carriers, though your mileage may vary with LTE thanks to the general fustercluck of international LTE standards. It uses bands 2, 4, 5, and 17, so check your intended carrier before buying. As usual with featured eBay deals, standard shipping to the US is free. The seller ships "worldwide," unless you're in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, South America, Mexico, Greece, Cyprus, Ukraine, or the Czech Republic. So no, not worldwide at all.