ASUS doesn’t appear to have revealed much online about the Transformer Book this evening as their events take place in London and New York but there’s enough so far to confirm it’s coming and to fill out some of the specs. A 13.3” 1080P IPS display, CPU options up to Core i7 and there’s a 128GB SSD in the tablet. Up to 500GB hard drive sits in the keyboard dock. More specs below…
Unconfirmed but appearing in the flesh on photos in China is the Lenovo Thinkpad Helix, an 11.6” Core-based Tablet with keyboard docking station in much the same style as the Lenovo Ideapad Lynx, a more consumer-focused dockable tablet built around the Intel Atom Clover Trail platform. Details are think on the ground but we’ve pulled together as much as we can for you.
There’s some confusion about the mechanism here but after looking and reading through a number of reports, we’re going to say it has a single-sided screen that can dock with the screen facing forward or backwards.
Thinking of upgrading a desktop PC? Upgrading a Netbook. A 10″ Tablet? Now that Ivy Bridge 2nd-Generation Ultrabooks are here and we’re heading into a period of marketing and competition it’s the perfect time to consider converging to an Ultrabook.
A few weeks ago I turned off my desktop PC. It’s the first time it’s been shut down and disconnected for the 3.5 years that I’ve had it. In it’s place is nothing, until I plug my Ultrabook in. The reason I’m doing this is simple; The Ultrabook is better than the desktop for all but a few use cases.
Friday is turning out to be a good day. The iPad 2 launches in Europe (although I still don’t see any official pricing in Germany) and it’s my Birthday. Now, I hear that the Eee Pad Transformer is launching too. Decisions decisions!
The Eee Pad Transformer is an interesting product because it takes the idea of the smartbook one step further. It uses the Honeycomb operating system (which could enable a far superior laptoping experience than 2.x ever did) and it uses a keyboard mechanism that can be un-docked to allow tablet-only usage.
I tested the Transformer out at mobile world congress in February (video below) and wasn’t too impressed with the weight but full USB ports made me wonder if ASUS are building some nice USB hosting capabilities. The weight with the dock also seems a little over the top. With connectors and an additional battery in the keyboard unit, I’m expecting the total weight to tip 1KG. The unit I tested wasn’t running Honeycomb.
Pricing has me a little worried. The price for the tablet seems OK at 399 Euro although confirmation is still needed on storage and 3G capability. 32GB and 3G included is what I’m assuming at this stage. The price of the dock could add 120 Euro to that. The price isn’t too bad when compared with high-end tablets but when compared with the Tegra-2 based Toshiba AC100 smartbook (under 300 Euro with 3G) you get the idea that there’s a huge margin being added here and that the price should come down by at least 100 Euros over time.
The March 25th launch is for Taiwan only at this stage and will only include pre-order. Actual availability around the world is still unknown but we’ll probably hear more on Friday.