You might remember ASUS as the company that manufactured the overwhelmingly popular Nexus 7 tablet. Did you know that ASUS makes other tablets as well? It's true! Among them are the Transformer Pad, Transformer Pad Prime, and Transformer Pad Infinity. If you happen to own one of these tablets, then ASUS would like you to know that your slate is "scheduled to receive Android 4.1 updates in the coming months." Nice, huh?
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.
The ASUS Transformer Prime is the hottest Android tablet on store shelves right now, and for good reason; it's thin, fast, powerful, and well-featured. But there's one shortcoming that ruffled a lot of feathers: very poor GPS performance.
Last week, the CyanogenMod team launched the first CM9 nightly builds for the Galaxy Nexus, Nexus S, and Motorola XOOM. As of today, the following devices also have CM9 nightly builds available:
- Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 Wi-Fi and I/O Edition (download: p4wifi) - yay for the latter, as it seems Samsung completely abandoned it - I believe mine is still running 3.1 with no updates in sight.
While at the Google booth earlier today, ASUS was kind enough to let us take a look at the upcoming Transformer Pad Infinity (basically, a beefed up TF Prime), albeit a version we had not yet seen.
The TF700KG is likely going to be a Europe-only device (unless it were to be picked up by a major carrier here in the US), as it has a 4G LTE SIM slot on it, and runs on a Qualcomm S4 MSM8960 dual-core processor.
Back at CES, ASUS lit a bit of a wildfire by announcing a new iteration of the Transformer Prime with the model number TF700T. ASUS insisted that this new Prime would not replace the old Prime. To further drive that point home, the Taiwanese company has rebranded the TF700T as the Transformer Pad Infinity and placed it on the top rung of its rather varied tablet ladder.
Here's the specs for the Transformer Pad Infinity.
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 22.214.171.124. Today, a new (apparently incremental) was released that brings things up to 126.96.36.199. The only official word we have on the update is from Gary Key, Technical Marketing Manager at Asus, in an XDA thread:
If you lost root after updating your Transformer Prime with the latest OTA, we have good news: thanks to a new method found by Android hacker Saurik, you can now root once again.
So, you ready to make this happen? Let's get started.
First things first, you'll need to grab a couple of files.
Once you've downloaded the required files, plug your Prime into your computer, fire up adb, and enter the following commands (one at a time, of course):
adb push mempodroid /data/local
adb push su /data/local
adb shell chmod 777 /data/local/mempodroid
adb shell /data/local/mempodroid 0xd9ec 0xaf47 mount -o remount,rw '' /system
/data/local/mempodroid 0xd9ec 0xaf47 sh
At this point, you should be in a root shell session (indicated with the pound sign).
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 .