With the flagship Transformer Pad Infinity (TF700) release right around the corner and the release of the budget-oriented Transformer Pad (TF300) a few months ago, Asus has filled out it's line-up of 10" quad-core Android tablets. Obviously, most people would opt for the highest of the high-end (that'd be the TF700) if they were just looking to blow money. Unfortunately, most people aren't just looking for ways to spend as much money as possible, so instead, they spend enough to cover their needs.
Fun fact: a 1080p display packs 2,073,600 pixels. The Asus Transformer Pad Infinity (or TF700)? 2,304,000 - or 230,400 more. Most 1080p HDTVs are somewhere around 40-60 inches. The TF700 checks in at just 10. Compared to a 40" HDTV, that's 111% of the pixels in a package that's 6.25% of the size.
The screen may be the real headline feature with the Infinity, but it's not the only one worthy of note.
Early last month, it was revealed to much outcry that the Transformer Prime had a locked bootloader. Angry customers took to the forums to vent and started a petition to get Asus to change its stance. And just 24 hours later, that's what happened, with Asus promising an unlock tool down the road.
Today Asus delivered, with the unlock tool hitting the TP's support site:
TL;DR: Caveat emptor.
The company strongly suggests customers stay away from unlocking the bootloader, stating:
Just 9 days ago, Asus rolled out an update for the quad-core Transfomer Prime that brought things to build 18.104.22.168. Today, a new (apparently incremental) was released that brings things up to 22.214.171.124. The only official word we have on the update is from Gary Key, Technical Marketing Manager at Asus, in an XDA thread:
The tour de force Asus Transformer Prime (which I reviewed in early December and came away highly impressed by) is listed at HH Gregg for just $400 - that's both in store (if you can find it one available, anyway) and online, too. That may not seem like seem like a bargain for the uninitiated who are more accustomed to the $400 price tag of the original Transformer, but keep in mind that this is the newer, much sleeker, and much more powerful Tegra 3-touting Prime model, which normally retails for $500 .
Although we heard rumblings that the Prime would be delayed, some lucky customers have already received their Asus Transformer Primes, and it was briefly available (again) on Amazon before quickly selling out (again). Based on the universally glowing reviews (including my own), you're probably well aware by now that the Prime is a truly excellent piece of tech. But how does it compare to its older brother, the Transformer (TF101)?
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?
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.
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.
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.