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ASUS' followup to the original Transformer packs quite a punch

ASUS made quite a splash on the Android tablet scene with the original Transformer. While Motorola's Xoom has been a disappointment, many enthusiasts flocked to the Transformer due to its more attractive pricing.
 
Now, ASUS has announced its follow-up, the Transformer Prime, which is based around NVIDIA fresh new Tegra 3 processor (aka Kal-El). The Tegra 3 features four processing cores, a fifth “companion core” for low-power functions, and 1GB of RAM.

Tegra 3 is based on an ARM Cortex A9 design and doubles the Tegra 2's processing power. A 12-core GeForce GPU handles graphics duties and offers up to a 3x improvement in performance. To say that the Transformer Prime will be a multimedia/gaming powerhouse would be an understatement. 

Tegra 3 delivers all of this while offering up to a 61 percent savings in power consumption.

 
Moving to the actual tablet's design of the tablet, the Transformer Prime now weighs just 1.29 pounds and is just 0.33 inches thick. The 10" screen retains its 1280x800 resolution, but now Super IPS+ to go along with Gorilla Glass. Brightness is pegged at 600 nits and it has a 178-degree viewing angle.
 
Although holding up a 1.29-pound, 10" tablet up to take pictures is going to make you look like a goober, ASUS hasn't skimped when it comes to optics. The Transformer Prime features an 8MP rear camera with an f/2.4 lens and back-illuminated sensor. As is typical of today's high-end smartphones and tablets, it can capture video in 1080p. A 1.2mp camera is included on the tablet's face for video conferencing.

 
When it comes to connectivity, the usual microSD slot and micro HDMI port are included. In addition, the Transformer Prime continues to offer its proprietary interface to attach the keyboard dock that turns the tablet into a fully functional laptop. The keyboard dock adds a USB 2.0 port and a full-size Secure Digital slot.
 
Battery life is listed at an impressive 12 hours for the Transformer -- that figure jumps to 18 hours when using the keyboard dock.
 
The Transformer Prime will be made available for $499 (32GB) and $599 (64GB). The keyboard dock will be priced at $149. The Transformer Prime will ship with Android 3.2 “Honeycomb”, but will be updated to Ice Cream Sandwich OTA in early December.



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Curious about the Keyboard
By Expunge on 11/9/2011 9:41:03 AM , Rating: 2
Needs to drop $100 for each model.

I have a Transformer with the expansion keyboard.. throughly enjoy it. Wondering if my current keyboard will work on the QuadCore Tablet. Somehow I doubt it.. but would be nice.




RE: Curious about the Keyboard
By acer905 on 11/9/2011 12:25:25 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, thats been my biggest wonder. If they were smart, they would keep the keyboard dock the same throughout each generation of the tablet. The family would become much more attractive to buyers (those who still don't see the novelty of tablets) if you only had to pay for the keyboard once.


RE: Curious about the Keyboard
By KamikaZee on 11/9/2011 12:28:13 PM , Rating: 2
Doing the math, the Prime is only $50 more expensive than the original transformer (32gb prime = $499, 32gb TF101 = $449), which already was considered to be among the cheapest full android tablets.

50$ gets you a better screen, a sleeker, lighter form factor, and a pretty nice SoC upgrade, which under most circumstances will actually use less battery than the old chip!


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