Asus Transformer Prime Review exposes a thinner and more powerful Asus Tablet PC known as the iPad Killer
In this Asus Transformer Prime review the main objective is to ascertain what were the reasons to follow up the previous model, the Asus Eee Pad Transformer, with a new model this soon after the initial release. Asus is one of the biggest computer parts and accessories manufacturers of the world and definitely a major player in the tablet field. The technology associated with tablets does improve at manic speeds but all the announced new releases were scheduled for a 2012 release. Is it the necessity to be the first tablet to feature the brand new Tegra 3 quad-core processor? This Asus Transformer Prime review will determine the reasons and the prospective unveiling of the Android operating system to power this exciting new gadget.
The Tablet PC to beat
Right before Apple even announced the iPad 3, Asus ups the ante with the new Eee Pad Transformer Prime. The specs are just out of this world, starting with the already mentioned NVIDIA Tegra 3 quad-core processor, which is capable of running in 1.4 GHz multi-core mode. The Kal-El, which is the nickname given to this series of processors, features a 12-core NVIDIA graphics processing unit that will allow an unparalleled video output resolution of up to 2560 x 1600, native 1080p MPEG4 AVC/h.264 encoding and decoding and whatnot. The interesting tidbit of information here is that there is actually a fifth core included in this processor, the so called “companion” core, which is being used for power saving features.
The first incarnation of the Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime will feature 1 GB of RAM, a microSD card slot, micro-HDMI port and an audio jack. Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are a must, as well as the “taken for granted” gyroscope and GPS. The docking station, which will be again including a full-sized QWERTY keyboard and a touchpad, features a full-sized USB port and an additional SD card slot. The operating system is scheduled to be Honeycomb 3.2, the current top of the line Android platform, with the capability to upgrade to the Ice Cream Sandwich, or Android 4.0, as soon as it becomes available. At some point, the tablets will be shipped out with the latter.
Necessity, novelty or dominance issues
Continuing our Asus Transformer Prime review there is little doubt that the new processor provides for a new plethora on possibilities. The fact is also that the Tegra 3 processor just got unveiled, mere month and a half before the first Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime units are expected to be shipped out. Was there really time enough to eke out all the juice from the processor capabilities? This seems doubtful. Nevertheless, an 8 megapixel camera is now the main objective of the tablet imaging capabilities, with a LED flash capable of aiding a 1080p video shoot with continual flash.
Behind the scenes, NVIDIA has delivered some prototype Tegra 3 processors to Asus very early during development, as well as Google has been working overtime to make sure the Ice Cream Sandwich Android gets finalized in time for the December launch of the Transformer Prime, a courtesy call by Google amid negotiations between Asus and Microsoft to feature Windows 8 tablets in 2012. In any case, all has been done to make sure this next Transformer becomes the hit of the season, arriving shortly before Christmas, just in time to make a huge impact on the tablet market and possibly ruin the anticipated release of iPad 3.
Designing the future
Another little victory for the Asus is the achieved thinness of the tablet; with expected .33 inches (8.3 mm) it will be thinner than both, the iPad2 and the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1. It will be incredibly light at 1.29 lbs (586g). Additional improvement has been noted in the battery department, whopping 12 hours of continuous play are being promised, with additional 6 hours featured by the docking station’s additional cells. The display is supposed to be brighter and more luminescent. This is most likely the new top of the line measuring line, which all other manufacturers will have to face, besides the price tag, tentatively set at $499, with additional $149 for the docking keyboard. This announcement ensures that the pricing war is on and that prices for less powerful tablets will fall even more than they did already.
The biggest surprise is that the “old” Transformer is not deemed discontinued, but will receive an upgrade in the form of Android 4.0 shortly, with a smaller price tag to boot. Asus is apparently dead-set to conquer the tablet market in style, with a Tablet PC release almost one per quarter.
To wrap up our Asus Transformer Prime review there are only a few additional tidbits in regards to the new Asus tablet, namely a new coating, developed out of hydro-oleophobic substances, is supposed to reduce the fingerprint smudging significantly. The unit is slated to feature 32 GB of storage, with a 64 GB unit available for a slightly higher price. The display will feature super IPS+, which is supposed to make the Asus Transformer Prime brighter than the competition. The tablet will also have ASUS SonicMaster Technology integrated, promising to finally improve and deliver the sound you would expect from a high quality device.
Interestingly enough, several European vendors, including Amazon.de, already offer the Transformer Prime on pre-order. If you already own the former model, keep in mind that the newer model is significantly thinner and will most likely not be compatible to the docking station keyboard of the original Transformer Pad. It should also be mentioned that there will be a 1.2 megapixel camera for video chat and there is a microphone in there as well. In conclusion the Asus Transformer Prime review reveals the second generation Android Tablet PCs have arrived and are thinner, lighter, and faster with the new Tegra 3 quad-core processor. The Asus Transformer Prime will once again lead the Android Tablet PC pack.