ASUS Tablets—Introduction

With CES 2011 upon us, we must acknowledge that 2011 could well be the “Year of the Tablet”. Everyone—Motorola, Dell, HP, HTC, Acer, you name it—is releasing a tablet or three. If you’re ASUS, you’re announcing four different tablets today. If you are ASUS, I’d like to offer my congratulations and best wishes for this full-on assault of the tablet market. Chances are though, you’re not ASUS, so here’s the rundown on the four new devices.

Three of them are Honeycomb-based tablets, joined by a traditional Windows slate. Looking at the Android tablets, we have the MeMO, a 7” Snapdragon slate, the Transformer, a 10” Tegra 2 slate with an optional keyboard docking station (hence the name), and the Slider, an interesting 10” model with a sliding, tilting keyboard (think a supersized HTC Touch Pro 2). All three of these come under Eee Pad branding, while the Windows tablet is branded as the Eee Slate EP121. It’s a 12.1” slate with an active Wacom digitizer and Core i5 UM power. There are IPS displays and 178 degree viewing angles to go around, as well as 1080p playback and HDMI outputs.

Like I mentioned before, ASUS is just one company in a huge wave of forthcoming tablets. After Apple, Google is the biggest player in the room, both in the form of existing Froyo devices like the Galaxy Tab and new systems based on Honeycomb. Microsoft, who really made the first tablet push back in 2003, are still there, but seeing themselves being reduced to a bit player until something drastic changes (is anyone else seeing the parallels with Windows Mobile here?) BlackBerry and HP/Palm are hoping to make a splash with the PlayBook and WebOS, respectively. Given all these different players, let’s break down the four new ASUS tablets further.

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  • MobiusStrip - Wednesday, January 5, 2011 - link

    Too bad more people aren't asking this question.

    The lack of GPS on any and every tablet is DUMB. It's an easy way to add value to an otherwise horseshit product and trump half the iPads.
  • strikeback03 - Wednesday, January 5, 2011 - link

    Really? You are going to carry around a 10" screen for GPS use?
  • stlc8tr - Thursday, January 6, 2011 - link

    "Really? You are going to carry around a 10" screen for GPS use? "

    Maybe not for turn-by-turn directions but I definitely think that other geolocation services like Foursquare, Yelp, etc. would be utilized.
  • metafor - Wednesday, January 5, 2011 - link

    Snapdragons have GPS integrated. But whether there's a radio/antenna and software to enable it is a different question....
  • Gary Key - Wednesday, January 5, 2011 - link

    Yes, we will have GPS on select models and we are using Gorilla glass. Tthe prices are not set yet as they depend on a wide variety of options, mainly on drive/memory size and additional communication devices. ;)
  • softdrinkviking - Tuesday, January 4, 2011 - link

    "On paper, while the Slider seems like a cool form factor, there doesn't appear to be a compelling reason to choose it over the Transformer, no matter what your use case is."

    I think this would be useful for my case. I ride two trains to work, so i can slide out the keyboard on my lap and type, rather than using the touch screen buttons on a shaky train. when i don't need to type, i can hide the keyboard.
  • beginner99 - Wednesday, January 5, 2011 - link

    IMHO all too expensive. And 8 hours battery life? I thought these ARM based chips are much better than Atom let alone a core i5.
  • juzz86 - Wednesday, January 5, 2011 - link

    If you're driving a 4" AMOLED display they are :)
  • Seggybop - Wednesday, January 5, 2011 - link

    it's pretty amazing how manufacturers today have almost caught up with the 8-year old Compaq/HP TC1100 design. revolutionary stuff here ^_^
  • damianrobertjones - Wednesday, January 5, 2011 - link

    Now THAT was a tablet. I had one a few years back, with maxed out hard drive space at 120Gb and 2Gb ram. Tweaked Win7 install and it was amazing. That very same machine with Touch..... I'd buy it the same day!

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