Well, that didn't take long, did it? Just one short day after news hit the web that the Transformer Prime's bootloader is encrypted and locked, ASUS has issued a statement on its Facebook page regarding the matter, and it's definitely a step in the direction that the modding community was hoping for. Here's the meat and potatoes of it:
Forget about GPS issues, it looks like ASUS has a bigger problem on its hand with the Transformer Prime: a locked/encrypted bootloader. Like with other devices, as soon as the development community found out about this, there were some rather irritated people. The typical backlash against the company has now started on popular social networking sites, along with a petition that has managed to get over 200 signatures in just a few hours.
This is definitely not the type of publicity that ASUS wants surrounding the world's first quad-core tablet, and users are hoping that the Taiwanese manufacturer will eventually reverse its decision and open the device.
If you head over to the Best Buy website right now, for $499.99, you can get your very own ASUS Transformer Prime 32GB Amethyst Gray edition on its way to your doorstep from Best Buy's warehouse on Monday, December 27th.
Well, we started today off right by offering our US readers a Galaxy Nexus, but we figured it's only fair to bring our international readers into the mix for another awesome giveaway. Today, we're giving away one ASUS Transformer Prime 32GB Wi-Fi tablet to one lucky person, courtesy of Beansoft, the developers of the extremely popular third-party keyboard app Thumb Keyboard, along with a pair of Klipsch S4A headphones provided by Klipsch (read our review here).
- Soukthachone Vilaysack
Congratulations, you will be contacted for your information in the near future!
Update 12/18/11: It's back again - all other variants are still showing the "sign up for availability alerts" message.
Looks like Amazon may be gearing up to start (re)taking pre-orders for the Transformer Prime, with the 64GB version in champagne being the first one to make its way back to the site. As you may already know, Amazon started taking pre-orders several weeks ago, but abruptly stopped (no reason has really been made clear as to why) and ultimately ended up cancelling many users' orders.
Much like the original Transformer, the amount of demand for the Prime has been overwhelming, and ASUS has been struggling to keep up with production.
In light of the slew of Asus Transformer Prime (the first tablet to pack NVIDIA's quad-core Tegra 3 CPU) reviews and the pending release of said device, we are curious to know: would you still buy a dual-core tablet? Perhaps you would, but only for a secondary/budget tablet? Or only if it were smaller? Sound off in the poll below, and head down to the comments to share your thoughts.
The Asus Transformer Prime: the first Android device to ship with a quad-core chip, courtesy of NVIDIA's brand new Tegra 3 (Kal-El) CPU. But there's more of a hook here than power alone - Asus has gone back to the drawing board for the Prime (model number TF201) and revamped the device from nearly head to toe compared to its predecessor, the TF101. It's substantially thinner, lighter, and more attractive than the rather portly 101, while packing a much more powerful CPU, better display, and reportedly better battery life. But can they really improve upon all those aspects without cutting any corners?
Around midday yesterday, I received my review kit for the Transformer Prime, complete with dock, wireless gamepad, and HDMI cable - meaning I'm well equipped to take a deep dive into the hottest new tablet to hit stores. But to be completely honest, an in-depth review on a product this brand-spanking-new requires more hands-on time than can be had in two days. The full review will be up on Friday, but in the interim, enjoy the initial impressions and gadget porn below.
First up, let's run over the specs, largely from our official announcement post:
- 10.1-inch SuperIPS + display with Gorilla Glass
- 1.3GHz quad-core NVIDIA Tegra 3 Processor with 12-core GPU
- 1GB RAM
- 32GB or 64GB internal storage with microSD card slot
- microHDMI port
- 8MP F2.4 rear shooter with continuous flash for video recording, 1.2MP front camera (1080p camcorder!)
- 8.33mm thin
- 586g (1.29 lbs.)
- 12 hour battery life playing 720p video, 18 hours with keyboard dock
- Metallic spun finish
- Two available colors: Amethyst Gray and Champagne Gold (show below, respectively)
- Android 3.2.1 - will be updated to Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) as soon as possible after release
- $499 for 32GB model, $599 for 64GB, and $149 for the dock
- North American availability is expected to begin the week of 12/19 - this is straight from Asus's mouth in the Prime details that were sent to us (and again confirmed a few hours ago), contrary to the other "official" date of December 8 that we heard earlier today.