In the United States, all electronic devices that use certain wireless radio transmissions, including cellular, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and other standards and frequencies, must be approved by the Federal Communications Commission. It's technically illegal for retailers to sell devices that haven't been approved, which is probably why Google had to rapidly remove the Nexus Player pre-order status from the Play Store on Friday. But now the results of the FCC's tests on the Player have been posted to the Commission website.
Some Americans waited literally years for the weird and wonderful PadFone series to show up on a local carrier... and were finally unsurprised to see AT&T be the only one to bite. (Seriously, between all that Amazon and HTC hardware, AT&T seems like the only American carrier willing to take a little risk.) Now AT&T and ASUS are teaming up again for the slightly smaller version of the phone-tablet docking concept, the PadFone X Mini.
Countless people out there have surely checked out Asus tablets in department stores around the world and walked away thinking, "I wish I could have that." You would think they were talking about the hardware (especially considering how cool the original Asus Transformer was at the time), but instead, they had their eyes set on the spiffy live wallpaper being used to show off the device. Lucky for them, Asus has now released the animated MyWater wallpaper into the Play Store and opened it up to competing electronics.
For its first foray into the nascent Android Wear platform, ASUS created the ZenWatch. It aims to be the more fashionable and appealing alternative to the other square watches from LG and Samsung, and I think it largely accomplishes that.
Whether you prefer a square smart watch to a round one is a matter of personal opinion, but there's little denying that ASUS has made probably the most compelling square smart watch of the current Android Wear generation.
With every major event, like CES, IFA, or MWC, you can count on one thing: new stuff from ASUS. At this year's IFA conference, the company not only unveiled its first Android Wear watch, but also a handful of other devices, including a rehashed version of the MeMO Pad 7. The MeMO line has been a great choice for those looking to grab a seven inch tablet without breaking the bank, and this year's model shows a lot of promise for not a lot of dollars.
At this year's IFA, Asus has removed the layer of secrecy surrounding its upcoming Android Wear-powered ZenWatch. Unlike the Moto 360 or the LG G Watch R, Asus is not trying to wow us here with a circular display. The ZenWatch distinguishes itself by fitting a square screen behind a layer of curved glass and a hardware design that strives to be more than a plastic wrist computer. The watch sports a brown leather strap that's intended to add to its appeal.
IFA will take place early next month in Berlin, and a number of companies are tripping over themselves to drum up hype for their upcoming Android Wear devices. LG has teased the G Watch R, a round evolution of its first attempt from earlier this summer, a few times now. For its part, Asus also wants consumers to know that it has something on the way. Yet this competitor doesn't appear to have something circular on its mind.
Technically, Asus only posted a partial silhouette, but that looks like a watch, right? It's not a phone or a tablet, so that really just leaves a smartwatch, which is all the rage right now. Also "Time has been transformed..."
— ASUS (@ASUS) August 19, 2014
The Asus Transformer Pad TF701T has hit a new low, but it this case, that's a good thing. Shoppers can now find this 10-inch tablet on Amazon marked down to a very reasonable $279.99. It will still set buyers back $534.99 to get this thing with the dock included, but that has always been an optional add-on (Update: much cheaper - about $415 - if you buy the dock separately).