Tablets are rapidly changing the way we approach technology. They give a sense of immediacy and tactile connection that desktops and notebooks can't touch; however, I will be the first to admit that the hype seemed stupid to me. Several coworkers purchased the original iPad on the day it launched and were eager to show them off. "But what can you do with it?" was my question, and there wasn't a good answer.
ASUS has just announced via Twitter that they are currently testing Android 3.2 on the Eee Pad Transformer, and that the keyboard super-dock tablet will be receiving the update soon. What does Android 3.2 bring? A slew of bug fixes, mostly - along with compatibility for apps that don't scale properly (called "Zoom Mode") on Honeycomb tablets. Check out our article on Android 3.2 to learn more.
We often hear smartphone and other market share figures bandied about by various analysts and market research firms - but comScore tends to be a pretty trusted name in the industry, particularly when it comes to web traffic figures, so we take these numbers as being fairly reliable.
In their most recent web traffic survey of "non-computer" devices (tablets, phones, media players), comScore evaluated traffic on a per-nation basis, and the results don't paint a pretty picture for Android tablets.
There's no denying that the ASUS Eee Pad Transformer is one of the best Android tablets on the market. The keyboard dock makes it a one of a kind, and its unusually low price tag gives it more bang-for-your-buck than the bulk of the competition. Today's Daily Deal on eBay is the 32GB version of the Transformer (normally $500) with some pretty sweet accessories. While this bundle doesn't include the keyboard dock, it does bring a $90 Klipsch stereo headset and an 8GB microSD card to the table.
The ASUS Transformer is a nifty piece of tablet kit, particularly because of its super-awesome keyboard dock that comes with its own extended battery. But Transformer owners have complained that they're essentially left in the dark about the status of the dock's battery - because by default the only battery status displayed is that of the tablet itself. This means that you'll just see a nice, full battery for hours on end until suddenly your little green bar starts to drop precipitously, indicating the dock has finally run out of juice.
We first got a peep at the ASUS Eee Pad MeMO at CES earlier this year, but now it has become official... with a bit of a twist. Outwardly, it looks basically the same - until you throw it into landscape mode, that is. This activates a glasses-free 3D view for multimedia, movies, etc. Turn it back to portrait, and you've got a full-on productivity machine.
The 7 inch MeMO 3D not only includes a 1280x800 3D IPS capacitive touchscreen, but it's accompanied by a stylus (much like the HTC Flyer), for natural text input.
We already kind of knew a tablet/phone tag team would be coming out of ASUS at Computex this week, so today's leaked press photos of the symbiotic duo, simply called Padfone, neither shock nor disappoint.
What ASUS will undoubtedly officially announce tomorrow is a brainless tablet shell combined with a phone that fits snugly right in the back, held by this ridiculous-looking mechanism that teases my imagination with a world full of Russian Matryoshka-like devices that all fit inside each other.
Official word from Asus is that they can't make enough Transformers to keep up with demand, something that's perhaps not surprising given that the tablet maintains high-end specs but a low-end price. Luckily for some users, keeping a hawkish eye on (r)etailer's websites has allowed them to snatch one up when the seller was lucky enough to get a few in stock. Now, however, there's an easier way, called NowInStock.
With its Transformer tablet selling like hot cakes, ASUS is probably feeling pretty good about its Android product division right now. Next on the hardware manufacturer's list? A tablet phone sort of... thing. Is it going to be another Dell Streak mini-tablet mega-phone? I don't think so, though these are the images we've got of it so far:
The image on the top right is most intriguing to me.
We've all heard the rumors surrounding the shortage of Eee Pad Transformers, but now an ASUS spokesperson has come forward to let us all know the real deal: demand. One would assume that a company like ASUS would be able to predict that putting out the most economical device in its category would generate a lot of demand, but apparently it doesn't work that way.
ASUS spokesperson David Chang said that they would be dropping 100,000 Transformers in May, with an additional 200,000 to be shipped in June.