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Asus EeePad Transformer Gets a Thumbs-Up

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the looks-like-a-contender dept.

Android 160

Android Central has taken a close look at the new Transformer tablet from Asus, giving it an overall positive review, with minor points deducted for a 'plasticy' feel. The Transformer joins the Motorola Xoom in the world of Honeycomb (Android 3.0), and has very similar, high-end specs (though it's Wi-Fi only) with one big difference: the Transformer is marketed with a not-included-in-the-price attachable keyboard that adds a secondary battery. Notably, given inevitable comparison to the Xoom, the SD card slot, and Flash 10.2, work out of the box. The reviewer says Asus has done a credible job of making Honeycomb work well with a keyboard, but I wonder what other OSes will eventually be hacked onto this device. 16 hours of battery life in a netbook-sized computer sure sounds good to me, but I might want that to be with standard Linux apps instead of only with Android.

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Experts in the field. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35897672)

What do Optimus Prime have to say about this?

Autobot or Decepticon? (2)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897682)

And where do the arms and legs come out?

"notable" SD slot? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35897728)

> the SD card slot

That's notable these days? Every single consumer electronics device I've bought in at least 5 years, from my television set to my digital camera to my ultra-mobile PC has an SD slot. I didn't think it was possible to buy anything these days that _doesn't_ have one.

OK, I guess my desktop computer monitor doesn't have one, come to think of it, but the desktop itself does. Just the monitor has only USB. So I'll rephrase to _almost_ every electronics device.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

nomadic (141991) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897754)

Are you joking? You don't know why it's notable that a tablet computer is shown as having a SD slot? Do you think there might be another tablet computer this is meant to be in contrast to?

Re:"notable" SD slot? (2)

Denogh (2024280) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898028)

It's notable because the SD slot on the Xoom didn't work out of the box. In fact, I don't even know if it works now, 2 months later.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35897760)

Apple geeks are accustomed to having no ports other than the proprietary one.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897968)

For purposes of balance it must be pointed out that the transformer has a proprietary connector to attach to its keyboard and to charge it should really have been PDMI. But at least the tablet as a selection of non-proprietary ports. So someone can attach the device to a TV, or a mass storage device, or an SD card without paying an ASUS tax for the privilege.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (5, Insightful)

BoberFett (127537) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897802)

Considering 95% of all tablets in the wild (meaning the iPad) have no SD Card, having a card reader in a tablet is still somewhat of a novelty. How Apple gets away with that kind of thing I'll never know.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35897906)

Because Apple fanboyz are gay like the rainbows that fly out their mouths when they whinny over Steve Jobs' poop. That is how Apple gets away with this kind of faggottry.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (0)

vijayiyer (728590) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898078)

Maybe because nobody wants to fumble with little cards and little doors to break off, or remember which card has what on it? I wonder why camera companies waste volume with SD cards and don't just put 32GB of flash on the MLB and call it a day. The SD slot is an obsolete waste of product volume and complexity, and for some reason people (meaning people on Slashdot, not as a whole) don't seem to get it.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (0)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898140)

Maybe because nobody wants to fumble with little cards and little doors to break off, or remember which card has what on it? I wonder why camera companies waste volume with SD cards and don't just put 32GB of flash on the MLB and call it a day. The SD slot is an obsolete waste of product volume and complexity, and for some reason people (meaning people on Slashdot, not as a whole) don't seem to get it.

I'd love to have an SD slot on my iPad, but I wouldn't trade battery-life or rigidity of the structure for it. I know it's not the same, but I had a TabletPC a few years ago and I was scared to death of carrying that thing around due to its flimsiness.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898172)

WTF? My camera has an SD slot (I think they pretty much all do...) and I've never even heard of doors breaking off. The point is that it's upgradable. When I bought my camera 256 MB of flash was a little pricey. Today, I have a 16 GB card in there. And I can carry spares; if I fill one up, I can swap it in a few moments, something you can't do with built in flash.

SD obsolete? Then why is it in damn near every electronic thing you buy? It's the defacto standard for that kind of thing.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

Paracelcus (151056) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898442)

Only a complete idiot would say that the SD/SDHC/SDXC is obsolete, the fact that the development of the SDXC card at 1tb is just about to be released is proof that it is going to be the default removable storage medium of the first quarter of the 21st century.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

vijayiyer (728590) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898660)

I'm arguing that removable storage itself is becoming obsolete except for specialized applications. I stand by that. We'll see who's right in about 15 years.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

mrchapp (823433) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899108)

You'll be right in 15 years, but are wrong today.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

vijayiyer (728590) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898638)

But your camera itself must be obsolete now. If the included storage is on the correct scale compared to size of a single shot, there's no longer a point to the removable media. How many photos will you take in a single session? 100? 1000?
And don't get me wrong - I don't believe in planned obsolescence, which is why I like large format film instead.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

shawn(at)fsu (447153) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899080)

The DSLRs that I looked at don't have any internal storage. And I don't think I would want it too. The ability to store and organize pictures based on SD cards is nice. You buy a good DSLR camera and it will last you a long time

I'll sometimes takes 500 pictures on an outing at 10megs each

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

BoberFett (127537) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898176)

You can't imagine how removable media is useful? You've never used a floppy, CD, or DVD drive in your life?

Re:"notable" SD slot? (3, Insightful)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898188)

I wonder why camera companies waste volume with SD cards and don't just put 32GB of flash on the MLB and call it a day.

Because photographers don't want to waste time during a picture shoot downloading all their photos through the USB port, or they want to be able to take some shots and hand the card to someone to process them while they keep the camera doing camera-like stuff.

The most expensive part of a camera is not the electronics, it's the optics. Making the optics sit idle while you deal with an electronic issue is big big waste of money and time.

The SD slot is an obsolete waste of product volume and complexity, and for some reason people (meaning people on Slashdot, not as a whole) don't seem to get it.

I don't "get it", because I use the SD slots on the devices I have to move data back and forth, and have compact storage for things I want to carry with me. Yes, it's hard to remember which card contains what, sometimes, but I've found the same problem with USB sticks. What I also like is that most of the SD slots my things have are completely internal, so there isn't anything sticking out of the device while I'm using one, unlike USB sticks which 'stick out' and get in the way.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

vijayiyer (728590) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898766)

I'm not saying you're wrong or right for using an SD card - I'm saying that you're in a very small minority. Big difference. My problem is that people assume that what's good for a small number of tech savvy individuals is good for the whole, which is most definitely not the case.
I shoot large format film, but I'd be delusional for saying that users need 100 megapixel images, or judging people as somehow lacking for using a point and shoot.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

MrHanky (141717) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898402)

The one aspect of fanboys that disgusts me is how they twist drawbacks into being "features", and then other assholes come along and mod them up for it. You, sir, are a fanboy of the most disgusting kind.

Also, none of what you said has any truth in it whatsoever.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

vijayiyer (728590) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898536)

And you're the hater of the worst kind. Other people made intelligent arguments against me, like civilized people. You, instead, resort to name calling.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (0)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898580)

The one aspect of fanboys that disgusts me is how they twist drawbacks into being "features", and then other assholes come along and mod them up for it. You, sir, are a fanboy of the most disgusting kind.

The one aspect of assholes that disgusts me is how they how they relentlessly harp on one thing they can't live without, and then other assholes come along and then mod them up for it. You sir, are an asshole of the most disgusting kind.

See, my problem is the level of absolute screeching irrationality that comes out of the anti-Apple camp -- you more or less assume that your pissing and moaning is a fact of nature, and that just because you hold that opinion, it is sacred and anybody who disagrees with it is clearly defective. Maybe not everybody wants a device they can recompile a kernel for or do a port of a Nintendo emulator to. Generally speaking, after 15 years in the industry, I don't.

Most of these posts amount to "zomg, teh Apple is the suxor and anybody who disagrees is a retard who should be removed from the gene pool". Dial it back a notch -- not all devices are for all users. Just because it's a feature that you absolutely can't live without, doesn't mean everyone cares. People judge these things by different criteria.

Deal with it -- it's not like it's something important, like the fact that vi is way better than emacs, and that all those guys have chosen wrong. ;-)

Seriously, it's a computer device ... but you guys make it into an issue like religion, abortion, or politics. Go have a beer, get laid, and try to remember the actual important things in life. I bet after your 3rd pint, the fact that a device you don't even own doesn't have an SD slot will miraculously not matter one whit.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

MrHanky (141717) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898848)

Sorry, but the only "screeching irrationality" here is your own. Notably, you're making an awfully long strawman argument here, and fail to address anything I actually said while imagining a lot of other things. So kindly fuck of and die.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

DrgnDancer (137700) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898428)

I don't think I'd miss the slot on a tablet, but I can tell you why camera manufactures still use them. Shooting raw, my wife can fill a 32GB card quite easily shooting a wedding. A long wedding she can fill it completely and make a dent in a second. Once the photos are culled, cropped, and turned into JPEGs they don't take up anywhere near that much space, but during the event there's really not time for that stuff, nor for downloading pics to a computer.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (3, Insightful)

dunkelfalke (91624) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899344)

Are you out of your mind?
Do you want to buy a new device because you suddenly need 32 gigabytes of storage instead of 16 because your media library grows? Or maybe throw the device away when flash memory starts having problems after a few years?

Well, I don't. I'd rather replace a micro sd card with a larger one.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

Desler (1608317) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898088)

Because having no SD card slot is better than having a Xoom which has a non-functional SD card slot?

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898116)

Considering 95% of all tablets in the wild (meaning the iPad) have no SD Card, having a card reader in a tablet is still somewhat of a novelty. How Apple gets away with that kind of thing I'll never know.

Well, as a counter point to that ... I have never found myself thinking "boy, what I really need is an SD card slot in my iPad". Not even a little.

Maybe, just maybe, not everybody wants or needs an SD reader in a device like this. I've got most of my iPad filled with MP3s and movies, the rest is apps and books ... and if I really needed to get something onto my iPad, I could always put it into my Dropbox account and it would show up on my iPad. But, generally, it's for accessing the web, as well as the content I already have on it. If I filled the 8GB card in my camera, I don't have room on my 64GB iPad to offload it.

To me, my iPad isn't used to offload data from other devices. In fact, if I compare it to my laptop (which I also bring with me on business trips) ... I use the two devices for completely different purposes.

Clearly, by the volume of screeching and whining about the iPad, it isn't a device geared to the majority of Slashdot users. That doesn't mean that the people who own them don't find utility in them.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

RockClimbingFool (692426) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898962)

The iPad is a really great media consumption device. Unless you are near a good wifi access point though, (like your house), you will get charged and arm and a leg for streaming that media over AT&T or Verizon.

Since slower read/write speed SD cards are pretty inexpensive (you don't need class 10 to watch a video), you can conceivably load up several cards once with lots of movies and shows and just pop them in and out as you wish.

Moving large videos off and on the iPad's internal storage takes time. And depending on your mood, you could end up moving stuff back and forth regularly. That gets old.

You don't need expensive, high quality internal storage for viewing videos.

And for more proof Apple does it to extract more money with the higher priced, larger storage models, look at the iPad camera connection kit. Its basically an external SD card reader. And they crippled it so you can't just watch videos off of it.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898244)

Considering 95% of all tablets in the wild (meaning the iPad) have no SD Card, having a card reader in a tablet is still somewhat of a novelty. How Apple gets away with that kind of thing I'll never know.

Apparently because that something like 95% of people in the market for a tablet don't feel like they need an SD slot? Just guessing.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

smelch (1988698) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898360)

Yes, thats a reliable conclusion to draw from that. "iPads sold so SD isn't a feature people want." Please, tell me you'll join my marketing department.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

Vancorps (746090) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898434)

Rrrrright, just like they didn't feel a need for a camera, oh wait, now there's the iPad 2 now with camera! Apple is famous for withholding tech to give incentives to buy the new version. 95% of iPad owners probably have little in common, consider a lot of dialup users even today see no advantage to broadband Internet because they don't know any better. The only difference is that many people on Slashdot know that there are other options which don't have artificial limitations.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898412)

Considering 100% of tablets don't have a working SD card slot it is even more so.

Xoom's SD slot is non functional and flash on honeycomb is a nightmare in all aspects.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898756)

> Considering 100% of tablets don't have a working SD card slot it is even more so.

100% Whatever you're smoking, I want some. My Nokia tablet from half a decade ago has *two* working SD slots. All Windows tablets i'm aware of have at least one.

Re:"notable" SD slot? (1)

node 3 (115640) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899758)

Considering 95% of all tablets in the wild (meaning the iPad) have no SD Card, having a card reader in a tablet is still somewhat of a novelty. How Apple gets away with that kind of thing I'll never know.

It's an add-on for those that want one.

If you ever wondered (0)

Moderator (189749) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897732)

If you ever wondered whatever happened to the kid who used to grease up the Nintendo controller every time you let him play, looks like he's reviewing Tablet devices at AndroidCentral.

Seriously, look at the photos of the screen and the keyboard trackpad. Did this guy just finish a bag of Frito Lays?

Re:If you ever wondered (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897814)

Spoken like someone who has never owned a touch screen device.

Re:If you ever wondered (0)

Moderator (189749) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897902)

Spoken like someone who has never owned a touch screen device.

A little bit of skin oil I can understand, but look at the keyboard in the second picture. Specifically, the trackpad and the spacebar/enter keys. You think that's normal?

Re:If you ever wondered (1)

the_hellspawn (908071) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898008)

The author was eating something or this is the first time he left the air conditioning (hence the Pensacola on one screen shot). The pasty boy was probably hot and wanted real light to photograph the item. While doing the shot he suffered 2nd degree burns just to show you a pretty cool product and you have to point out he is melting like a stick of butter in the Florida sun. Have some love man.

Re:If you ever wondered (1)

boristdog (133725) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898192)

Heh. Every tablet I have ever seen is a smudge-fest.

mm? (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897746)

but I might want that to be with standard Linux apps instead of only with Android.

Why? Wouldn't most Linux (or even Windows) apps be a huge pain to use on just a touch screen?

Re:mm? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35897762)

Frankly if Unity ran smooth on this, I would love dualbooting. And that works amazingly on a touch screen.

Re:mm? (1)

chispito (1870390) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897782)

but I might want that to be with standard Linux apps instead of only with Android.

Why? Wouldn't most Linux (or even Windows) apps be a huge pain to use on just a touch screen?

Did you see the part where it's called a "Transformer" because there is a detachable keyboard/battery?

Re:mm? (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897930)

Did you see the part where it's called a "Transformer" because there is a detachable keyboard/battery?

Man, I thought that was because it could turn into a car [imdb.com] .

This is essentially just a docking station. How lame is that? ;-)

Re:mm? (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898042)

Did you see the part where it's called a "Transformer" because there is a detachable keyboard/battery?

I did make an error, but that wasn't it. I interpreted that statement as "only Linux apps" to the exclusion of Android. I misread that.

My bad.

Re:mm? (1)

nomel (244635) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898080)

Not sure about your mouse, but mine is pretty simple.

The best windows touch screen I've used worked something like this:
    click - quick tap
    double click - two quick taps
    move mouse - move finger around the screen
    drag - click hold

The only time I miss the mouse is with high precision clicking, like text selection or grabbing small sliders. Most everyday apps, getting within 5 pixels or so is completely acceptable.

Re:mm? (1)

samkass (174571) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898796)

but I might want that to be with standard Linux apps instead of only with Android.

Why? Wouldn't most Linux (or even Windows) apps be a huge pain to use on just a touch screen?

This is the core problem with Android tablets so far. They are currently having trouble bootstrapping their software/hardware co-dependent marketplace. So what is this device really for, then, if it's not going to get many of the best tablet-sized apps being developed on the iPad?

Re:mm? (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899362)

Wouldn't most Linux (or even Windows) apps be a huge pain to use on just a touch screen?

Well, if native Linux were available on devices and toolkits became better geared for handling multiple modes of interaction, there's no reason you couldn't load the same software on your tablet and on your desktop. It'd load one UI for the tablet and one UI for the desktop, with no code changes whatsoever between them.

Android does not magically make applications work in the touch formfactor. It simply has no non-touch-formfactor apps.

We've come full circle (4, Insightful)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897776)

"Yes, this tablet is good but it needs a keyboard."

"Ah, yes, this keyboard is fine, but it needs a real OS."

"Whoa, this OS is killing the battery, what this needs is a big ol' battery and a charger brick to charge it."

"My hand is getting tired with all the pinching and zooming. I need a good touchpad and sometimes a good mouse."

So we're just reinventing the laptop. Great. Turns out doing something productive on a tablet is borderline impossible.

Re:We've come full circle (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897954)

Quote Story:

We initially began writing this review in it [The Polaris Office documents app] to get a feel for the keyboard -- until the tablet froze up and we lost a couple hundred words.

There may be some problems with the initial choice of software, but that's not to say you can't do anything productive.

One would probably not set out to write the next great Novel on such a device, but that is not the only definition of "productive".
You can read email, the web, and books, create and edit spread sheets, documents and photos. You can collaborate over the
internet with video conferencing.

And you can choose to do this without the keyboard while sitting on the couch pounding down a beer.

If productive to you means editing your autocad drawings and compiling kernels, then clearly this is not the device for you.

Re:We've come full circle (1)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898478)

Err, the laptop its actually SITTING ON MY LAP. Opposed to a tablet which I need to hold and use my other hand to control it. I can literally use a laptop with a beer in one hand, but its a lot more tricky with a tablet. You may to rethink this one.

Re:We've come full circle (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898704)

Tired of roasting my knees. Hate laptops on the lap.

Re:We've come full circle (1)

drosboro (1046516) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898784)

Pretty sure it's not the knees that you should be most concerned about...

Just sayin!

Re:We've come full circle (1)

ThatMegathronDude (1189203) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899120)

He moved the laptop to his knees out of concern for his boys.

Re:We've come full circle (1)

samkass (174571) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898736)

Err, the laptop its actually SITTING ON MY LAP. Opposed to a tablet which I need to hold and use my other hand to control it. I can literally use a laptop with a beer in one hand, but its a lot more tricky with a tablet. You may to rethink this one.

You don't actually own one, apparently. Among the problems everyone I know who has an iPad have mentioned, that's never one of them.

Re:We've come full circle (1)

calderra (1034658) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898948)

...except for all the people complaining that it won't lay flat on a table.

Re:We've come full circle (1)

nomel (244635) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898102)

>Turns out doing something productive on a tablet is borderline impossible.

And this has never been the target audience...which is why you probably don't have one ;-)

Re:We've come full circle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898858)

Yeah, that's the direction that some people want to streer tablets.

But, the truth is, productivity is not impossible on a simple tablet. It's just different.

I think the basic concept of having a tablet transcend the gap between a laptop and tablet is smart, but only if you like and enjoy tablets for what they're for.

One must accept they are either for ultra-portability, or for the fun of being different.

I'm fine with a tablet that's not a laptop. I'm also fine with a tablet that can be both, or a laptop that can be both. Why? Because I actually like android and touch screens, they're fun.

It's silly, but yeah, we all waste money on fun in some way, and that's all a tablet is to me. But, I like that the accessory for the transformer dares to make it more than a tablet.

Even if I get a transformer, I doubt I will get the attachment keyboard thing, because physically transforming it into a laptop won't make it capable of the functions of a laptop that it's currently missing. However, give it a few more years and I'm sure the android dev team will figure out a way to accompany these increasingly popular keyboard docks with a laptop appropriate styled android OS, or even partner with an optimized linux distro to fulfill the same purpose. By then, I will be more interested in these accessories, but for now I like my toy the way it is. Small, liberated, beautiful OS designed for a fun touch screen which is capable of light work and heavy fun.

Coming full circle won't be a bad thing as long as the laptop features stay in those attachments so the tablet can still be what it was meant to be and not held back by trying to be too much for its hardware or battery size.

Re:We've come full circle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898972)

Not only are they reinventing the laptop, they're reinventing THEIR OWN laptop!

Look up the Asus EEE-PC T-91, then ask yourself why you would pay for a "toy" OS that can't do nearly as much as a touchscreen netbook running a full Windows XP.

Seriously, if Asus had Apple's marketing department, the whole concept of a tablet would have been considered laughable because a far better device for the same price was already on the market a year before the first iPad!

Re:We've come full circle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35899202)

This tablet looks like the closest thing to being usable out there, but I still wouldn't buy one. Tablets won't be useful for me until they can offer at least 16 hours of full performance battery life, Pixel Qi or Mirasol display and hybrid resistive/capacitive touchscreen tech. Without those key features, they're no more portable or convenient than a standard netbook or laptop.

The price is pretty reasonable. (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897780)

The 16-gigabyte version will cost $399; the 32GB version runs $499. The keyboard dock is another $149. So for $550 -- less than the cost of a 32GB Wifi-only Motorola Xoom, you can have a 16GB Android tablet/laptop.

I'm guessing this thing will spend most of its life undocked, once you read your email and start surfing the net. Tablets are couch computers for the most part.
How often will want to dredge up the keyboard, balance it on their lap while using it anywhere other than a desk or table?

For the amount of typing one does on a tablet, it might be that some of the predictive on-screen keyboards [swiftkey.net] would be faster for most typing.

Re:The price is pretty reasonable. (1)

Qwavel (733416) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898096)

Yes, but let's get over the SD card and Flash issue.

Those are not yet functional on the Xoom, and the fact that they released the Xoom without the SD support was rather silly, but the hardware is there and SD and Flash will soon be supported on the Xoom.

Claiming Flash and SD as an advantage of the ASUS product will just confuse people.

Re:The price is pretty reasonable. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898316)

Flash works fine on the Xoom.

Re:The price is pretty reasonable. (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898658)

Are you sure you are replying to the right person?
I mentioned nothing about SD.

Re:The price is pretty reasonable. (1)

FlyingBishop (1293238) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899582)

Personally, I just want a notebook I can write stuff in that I don't have to worry about charging. You may be surprised to learn that some people like to write.

This is the first product that actually sounds like it could be that device.

No GPS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35897874)

Meh, I think I'll wait for the one with GPS.. IIRC the Acer Iconia 500 will have GPS..

Re:No GPS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898306)

The Transformer is a Wifi-only device. And to that end, it's got 802.11 b/g/n for connectivity, as well as Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR. There's also GPS, so you can use it for navigation and location-based services.

paranoid delusionals run church of jesus christ (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35897900)

so just who is the real almighty(s), & would he/she/it/they really want everybody to die prematurely after inhuman treatment by religious crusader glowbull warmongerers?

I wonder what MS will do about this? (1)

rsilvergun (571051) | more than 2 years ago | (#35897928)

They did a find job killing Linux Netbooks. Anyone remember that half drunk rant from an Asus CEO (or was it ACER) about MS strong arming them? I guess it doesn't matter since they don't run MS-Office, and oo.org isn't a serious competitor (nice software, but too much retraining, and if you don't think that's true, you haven't done enough tech support with end users). So how does Microsoft kill these Android phone/tablets so they don't bite into their market?

Re:I wonder what MS will do about this? (1)

calderra (1034658) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898916)

There was also like the 40%-ish customer satisfaction rate. IIRC. People like the idea of tablets and netbooks, but that loathe actually using them.

Re:I wonder what MS will do about this? (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899186)

There was also like the 40%-ish customer satisfaction rate. IIRC. People like the idea of tablets and netbooks, but that loathe actually using them.

Good job attempting to lump tablets in with netbooks. Too bad you're completely off base [cnbc.com] .

Looks way too much like "Anus PeePad" (0)

Slutticus (1237534) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898062)

Who names these things? JooJoo, then iPad, now this?

Ok, that's neat. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898098)

The one thing I'd like to use a tablet for is reading technical documents in PDF format. An ereader is NO GOOD for this task. I also would like a laptop to write my own LaTeX documents on. This is something that appeals to me greatly. Something that I can easily read PDF's on as a tablet and then write my own with it too. If there were a full Linux or Windows operating system for this I'd be pretty much sold.

Am I a bad person for this? haha

TC1000 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898104)

Reminds me of the Compaq TC1000, updated.

Application Permissions (0)

MetalOne (564360) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898124)

I finally got an Android phone and I took an immediate disliking to the way applications and their permissions are handled. Before you install an application from the Android Market you are told what permissions the application wants. If you don't like it, all you can do is not install the application. For example, if I want TV Guide listings, but the TV Guide application wants access to my contacts, and I don't want to give up access to my contacts then I am stuck. There is no method for me to deny the TV Guide application access to my contacts, other than not installing it. With social media taking off, many applications now want access to my contacts. I just find this unacceptable. I also don't know of any means to currently filter the Android applications by their permission requests. I also notice that applications seem to just start up by themselves. I have an application called Advanced Task Killer that stops applications. However, before long a bunch of applications are running that I did not specifically start. I don't know if Linux is any better about this. Is there any means I have to protect against an application finding my email contacts and phoning home with them?

Re:Application Permissions (1)

Ogive17 (691899) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898390)

So you'd rather just install an app without knowing it's going to take your data and sell it to the highest bidder? I'm not sure what you're complaining about, if you don't agree with the settings, you don't install. If you are unhappy about app offerings, create one yourself or hire someone to do it for you.

Re:Application Permissions (1)

MetalOne (564360) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898998)

I want to be able to set the permissions, and make it the apps responsibility to test for what it is allowed to do and then run in a diminished capacity.

Re:Application Permissions (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898470)

No, but then you should look at the way permissions are handled on most other platforms. That is to say, they're not. Most other platforms are on an allow-always, without notifying you of access to your contacts and whatnot. Just remember this: If you see one program (on any platform) using your personal information, *ALL* of them have access to that information unless you see a permission screen somewhere. If privacy is utterly important to you, you should go BlackBerry, where you can control things very specifically. I think this is one of the reasons why developers prefer Android to BB -- you can't turn off Internet for just that one app and screw over any advertising revenue. It strikes a balance between user privacy and developers. Think about it this way as well: your desktop computer has been an open book to any application on there; this is no different then ignoring the permission screen and clicking install.

The Android OS automatically starts up *OR* keeps in memory tasks it deems necessary. Applications that randomly keep running in memory and chewing up battery life (Settings > About Phone > Battery Usage) is largely the responsibility of that application -- it has requested that it wants to stay active (tho it can still be kicked out if the need arises). That said, if another program can be responsible for keeping another application in memory but this is typically not the case.

I'lll keep my T91MT Thanks. (1)

Unka Willbur (1771596) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898152)

At least I can run a non-toy OS on that one.

Re:I'lll keep my T91MT Thanks. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898252)

Like windows...

Re:I'lll keep my T91MT Thanks. (1)

Unka Willbur (1771596) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899116)

Like Ubuntu, or OS X (via hackintosh) or, yes, if I must, the Win7 install it came with. Certainly not Google's little not-ready-for-primetime toy.

Erm.....resistive with multitouch? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898578)

No thanks!

Re:I'lll keep my T91MT Thanks. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898758)

Har har. Never heard that one before. hurp durp.

Standard Linux apps (1)

nerd65536 (692353) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898206)

As long as you're rooted, you can chroot into any armel distro. See here http://nerd65536.blogspot.com/2011/01/how-to-instal-debian-or-ubuntu-in.html [blogspot.com]

Re:Standard Linux apps (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899332)

I'd rather just use a standard distribution natively than have to play second-class under Google's thumb.

So it's like a touchbook (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898208)

Just like a touchbook from Always Innovating (http://www.alwaysinnovating.com/home/index.htm) but with an actual production capability and an OS that the maker didn't have to write from scratch.

Looks awesome but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898260)

This thing looks awesome. The Android tablets are shaping up nicely from a hardware/OS perspective, I'm so impressed with the innovation and capabilities. However, I'm not willing to make the leap until the app developers do. The Honeycomb section of the marketplace is pretty horrible at the moment.

Re:Looks awesome but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898618)

Applications don't have to be written specifically for HC. All Android applications can support whatever resolution the developer puts their effort into, so it doesn't *NEED* Honeycomb support. Hell, this one mah jong game that I had install over a year ago rearranged the controls (the action buttons were moved to the right edge of the screen) on my Notion Ink Adam. The Angry Birds backup that I used works perfectly, etc.

As a matter of fact, most games shouldn't even be USING / don't *need* the HC specific enhancements for the most part as they usually take up the whole screen anyway and have just one dominant UI "part" -- there's no need for Renderscript or Application Fragments.

Better Review (1)

FSWKU (551325) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898336)

For a more in-depth review that includes benchmarks and photos that weren't taken out on mom's patio table, Anandtech did a pretty good write-up. I'm even being so kind as to include a link to the printer-friendly version with everything on the same page.

http://www.anandtech.com/print/4277 [anandtech.com]

Re:Better Review (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35899788)

If you like their review, please give them some revenue by linking to the main review page http://www.anandtech.com/show/4277/asus-eee-pad-transformer-review [anandtech.com] . It contains some advertising but the ratio of content to ads is quite good.

BTW I'm not affiliated with them in any way and also like most of their reviews.

Tempted to jump on this for $399 (1)

Reapman (740286) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898356)

For me the big thing is the price... $399 (Even in Canada) is getting pretty close to a price point I'm comfortable with. The keyboard dock for an extra $150 I'd probably get at the same time.

Although a 10" keyboard isn't ideal, I'm wondering what options there are, if any, to do real Android application development on something like this? I need to replace my old MacBook where I do most of my work right now, and my desire to try this tablet thing out and the fact it has a keyboard makes me wonder if that is somehow doable. I imagine I'd have to use a remote server for the actual compiling and some combination of SSH to get the code back and forth... probably not worth the hassle if that's the case.

Re:Tempted to jump on this for $399 (1)

alvinrod (889928) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898584)

I think that price, more than anything else, is going to allow this tablet to succeed where other Android tablets have failed. The only question is how many other tablet manufacturers are eager to turn this new market space into a cut-throat race to the bottom?

Re:Tempted to jump on this for $399 (1)

dogmatixpsych (786818) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899386)

That's the only way to compete with Apple. I guess once the tablet apps in the Android Marketplace(s) get built up more there might be some incentive there but right now without a (significantly) lower priced product, it is really hard to compete with Apple's iPad.

Definitely getting one (1)

Halifax Samuels (1124719) | more than 2 years ago | (#35898508)

I'm definitely getting one, on release day if possible (I'm such a shameless Asus fanboy). If I can eventually boot Linux off the SD card I think that would be ideal. It saves precious space on internal storage and would only operate with the keyboard attached, which I think is what I would like. There's a MicroSD slot on the tablet itself, though, so some people may prefer that.

Re:Definitely getting one (1)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899194)

I too got really tempted by this thing. It's got sufficiently large screen, HDMI-out, enough storage, and I really love how they've done the keyboard accessory. This seems a lot like a Tablet Done Right (TM) so far. I just don't know where in Finland one can get these things, it's quite difficult to find any good tablets here.

I'm all over this at $400 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35898666)

This thing hits the market in just a few days - April 26th, and looks like it will be available at NewEgg and Amazon, along with a bunch of other sites. Dual core, 1G RAM, the 'standard' 1280x800 screen resolution for Honeycomb, mini-hdmi, two USB slots, sd slot. Heck, you can plug a usb mouse and keyboard into this thing and skip their docking station / laptop accessory. USB storage shows up too. This is closer to the price point I was hoping the Xoom would come out for.

Sounds like the stock ROM is very close to the stock Android build too - may not need to de-crap the device.

So an Android site likes an Android tablet? (1)

DavidinAla (639952) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899308)

Isn't this nearly as big a deal as when an iPhone site likes a new iPhone? I mean, Android lovers are desperate for Android tablets to like, so they're hardly unbiased.

Invented at least two years ago... (1)

zzarko (1854300) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899350)

From the end of the article: "You get an Android tablet. And an Android laptop. And that's something nobody but ASUS can yet offer." Hmmm. I remember reading about Always Innovating's Touch Book about 1-2 years ago, with characteristics similar to this tablet/laptop. And they have a new one called Smart Book, that have two tablets plus keyboard in one, with support for Android, ChromeOS, Ubuntu and their own Linux variant. I just checked their site, and surprise, surprise, they caught ASUS's "invention" too... http://www.alwaysinnovating.com/home/index.htm [alwaysinnovating.com]

Re:Invented at least two years ago... (1)

earls (1367951) | more than 2 years ago | (#35899682)

Posted at least one hour ago...

Not so fast. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#35899438)

Android X86 is coming and I bet I can make it dual boot with just about any laptop you have soon.
I hope with X86 i can get a dell 5 type device with dell 7 specs.

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