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ECS Shows Universal PadFone-Like Tablet

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the one-device-to-rule-them-all dept.

Handhelds 44

siliconbits writes with this excerpt from ITProPortal: "Just 24 hours after Asus unveiled its padfone, ECS is toying with an idea that resembles the Asus PadFone — in a nutshell, a tablet that becomes a docking station for your smartphone just by slotting it at the back. While the Padfone works only with Asus' own smartphone, the ECS model will be open to other models and the one we played with was physically compatible with the Apple iPhone 4. Wu reckons that the accessory will appeal to users because it doesn't require them to ditch their existing handsets and will be compatible with future models using what Wu described as 'simple upgrades.' The tablet will work across platforms; Windows Phone, Android & iOS which should include the iPhone 5."

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Apple did it (kind of). (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36297524)

Maybe someone can find those apple patent drawings for the LCD where the laptop would dock into it creating a 2 piece iMac? Sounds like the same idea miniaturized.

Re:Apple did it (kind of). (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36304168)

Like most things apple does that was hardly the first atempt at a transforming laptop tablet with removable screen. This however is a first of its kind and what the motorla atrix concept should of been; but then they would of been competing with them self and the xoom.

Pad-Phone (1)

dimethylxanthine (946092) | more than 2 years ago | (#36297570)

...more than meets the eye.

Re:Pad-Phone (2)

munozdj (1787326) | more than 2 years ago | (#36297716)

...more than meets the i .

FTFY

Re:Pad-Phone (1)

JAlexoi (1085785) | more than 2 years ago | (#36298036)

When a padfone meets the eye, you get a black eye.

Nutshell (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36297660)

Was I the only one wishing that the Pad somehow folded into a nutshell?

I need to work on my reading comprehension.

Weird video (1)

AresTheImpaler (570208) | more than 2 years ago | (#36297662)

I don't get it, "pad" sounds horrible. Hell, it was mocked to death when the original iPad was released. Why is everyone using it now?
The Asus unveiling video is so hillarious: Link [youtube.com]

Re:Weird video (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36297714)

Because it was "mocked to death" by juvenile internet morons. Nobody outside of Slashdot and a few other crybaby forums thinks it sounds "horrible".

Re:Weird video (2)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 2 years ago | (#36297866)

You should go back in time to tell NASA not to call it a launch pad. And tell Sikorsky to be sure it doesn't get called a landing pad or helicopter pad. Might want to warn the cryptographers to call it something else than a one-time pad. Oh, don't forget Star Trek and their PADD.

Re:Weird video (1)

jdgeorge (18767) | more than 2 years ago | (#36297936)

You should go back in time to tell NASA not to call it a launch pad. And tell Sikorsky to be sure it doesn't get called a landing pad or helicopter pad. Might want to warn the cryptographers to call it something else than a one-time pad. Oh, don't forget Star Trek and their PADD.

I was right with you, then you kind of lost the whole argument there at the end.

Re:Weird video (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 2 years ago | (#36298144)

The last part is the tie-in with current events. Where do you think the PAD in iPad came from anyway?

It's a plain nod to Star Trek and the PADD, especially so since the entire interface is touch screen.

Re:Weird video (1)

JAlexoi (1085785) | more than 2 years ago | (#36298068)

ThinkPad also has the "pad" in it. It's not the Pad in the name, it's the predominant usage of Pad in the name

Re:Weird video (1)

jdgeorge (18767) | more than 2 years ago | (#36298336)

The original IBM "Think pad" was a pad of paper with the word "THINK" printed on every page. The computer brand [wikipedia.org] was a nod to that history.

Re:Weird video (1)

jdgeorge (18767) | more than 2 years ago | (#36298384)

The original IBM "Think pad" was a pad of paper with the word "THINK" printed on every page. The computer brand [wikipedia.org] was a nod to that history.

And here, I notice that my recollection is mistaken, according to my own source... "THINK" was on the cover, not necessarily the pages.

Re:Weird video (1)

Dan East (318230) | more than 2 years ago | (#36298304)

It makes more sense from this angle where you can see the projection screen:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sqjoRMHyYQc [youtube.com]
  I think it's more tongue-in-cheek style humor than what is apparent in the video you posted.

Does Apple approve? (1)

Sunshinerat (1114191) | more than 2 years ago | (#36297712)

Does Apple approve of this idea?
I find it hard to believe a third party solution that extends the iPhone into a tablet will be an Apple blessed product.

Re:Does Apple approve? (1)

dmacleod808 (729707) | more than 2 years ago | (#36297762)

additionally, it will only run iphone apps, which look terrible on a larger screen. Apple is not going to bastardize their product line to accommodate running ipad apps on an iphone for this kind of application.

Re:Does Apple approve? (1)

FictionPimp (712802) | more than 2 years ago | (#36297850)

But apple already has universal apps that know if they are a iphone or ipad and act differently. I'm sure there would be a way for the developer to compensate.

Re:Does Apple approve? (1)

Dynedain (141758) | more than 2 years ago | (#36297928)

The iPhone 4 can output 720p which should look just fine on a screen that size.

Sigh (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 2 years ago | (#36297780)

If the design doesn't expose both displays then it is dumb, because now you are carrying around a display that does nothing. I could see doing this up in a laptop form factor, then you could have the phone on the back of the display.

Now, if you could get a high speed short range wireless network between your phone and your tablet, and your phone's OS had network transparency in the GUI, and you could use the tablet as a display without docking your phone, there would be a point to that...

Re:Sigh (1)

cyclomedia (882859) | more than 2 years ago | (#36297934)

That would be pretty cool, to come home and drop my phone into a dock/cradle and then pick up my "laptop" or "pad" form factor thing and have it magically synced (and not just the email/calendar/photos that Android currently syncs via TEH CLOUD, but MP3s and MP4s and current level on Angry Birds too). While we're at it, I've always fancied getting myself a car-kit for my desk at home so I can use a traditional phone shaped handset while the actual phone is in the dock and also to boost my cell signal as my house is surrounded by trees.

Re:Sigh (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 2 years ago | (#36299154)

get yerself a cheap over-ear single-ear headset for your phone, and a nice-looking handset, and get to hackin'. shouldn't run you more than ten bucks, fifteen if you have to buy an iron and solder. :)

Re:Sigh (1)

bjwest (14070) | more than 2 years ago | (#36301938)

... While we're at it, I've always fancied getting myself a car-kit for my desk at home so I can use a traditional phone shaped handset while the actual phone is in the dock and also to boost my cell signal as my house is surrounded by trees.

Been doing this for years. Started out with a CellSocket before Bluetooth then moved to the Dock-n-Talk (both available here) [coolproductz.com] . I'm using an XLink [myxlink.com] now with a duel line multi-handset cordless phone. My phone gets docked right inside the kitchen door when I walk in, and it stays there until I go somewhere. I'm considering getting rid of the land line all together. Seems the only calls I get on it now days are telemarketers anyway.

Re:Sigh (1)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 2 years ago | (#36302774)

What you REALLY want is this [thinkgeek.com] .

Re:Sigh (1)

bjwest (14070) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303742)

That's actually kinda cool.. If I stayed within range of my cell all day, I might actually get one just for the novelty of it.

Re:Sigh (1)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304282)

I just want a phone as durable as the Westinghouse built AT&T phones we had when I was a kid.

Re:Sigh (1)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304300)

D'oh! Western Electric, not Westinghouse. Got confused with where my great-aunt worked for some reason.

Re:Sigh (1)

cyclomedia (882859) | more than 3 years ago | (#36305916)

that XLink looks just the ticket, nice!

OH BOY! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36297950)

Now instead of carrying a tablet and a phone (which can be used separately), I'll be carrying a phone and a worth-fuckall-size-of-a-tablet-but-needs-a-phone "display" that can't be used separately! OMG! Where can I sign up to piss my money away?

Re:OH BOY! (1)

bjwest (14070) | more than 2 years ago | (#36301972)

You've heard of blue-tooth headsets, right? I'm sure the design team isn't stupid enough to leave the phone unusable while docked. Of course the cell provider will charge an extra $5 to $20 a month to be able to do that.

Re:OH BOY! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36323266)

You missed the point, you still won't be able to use the tablet without the phone plugged into it.

Re:OH BOY! (1)

bjwest (14070) | more than 3 years ago | (#36324018)

I see no problem with this if what you want is a 3/4/?? G enabled tablet. No need for two cell contracts, and the phone is still usable via a bluetooth earpiece and the tablet interface. You don't need the tablet for the phone to work, and you can still use the phone while using the tablet.

The only problem I really see with this is the limitation on the cell phone's processing power. Unless they speed it up with a secondary CPU/GPU and more memory in the tablet, I don't think it would be fast enough for tabletie type apps. Due to that limitation, I wouldn't purchase something like this. I want as much processing power possible on the tablet, and I don't need or want it to be cell-enabled. Tethering through the cell phone when I need networking away from home is sufficient.

Physically compatible... (1)

itsdapead (734413) | more than 2 years ago | (#36298272)

(From TFA) the one we played with was physically compatible with the Apple iPhone 4

So... the iPhone fitted in the hole. Can they actually make it talk to the iPhone (i.e. make it act as a touchpad and external display that can do more than show video from compatible apps) without Apple's blessing?

...and if the phone rings you're going to look even more stupid than Galaxy Tab owners holding that thing to your ear.

Now, If I were designing a phone/tablet combo I'd go for a tiny phone that was just a phone and camera (maybe enough display for looking up numbers and predictive texting), and could tether to the tablet for internet/texting on a big screen.

Meanwhile, where's the Asus pad with sliding keyboard that they announced a few months back? That looked interesting.

Not sure how Asus have avoided Osbourning themselves - they always seem to announce their next product before their last product has made it into your local store.

another dumb Asus move, need new management (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36298340)

I won't be buying one

it's too bad Asus can't even properly document or explain it's BIOS settings

it's a shame they don't make the things I'd really pay for

like good manuals

Re:another dumb Asus move, need new management (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 2 years ago | (#36299336)

yea and ECS products will take a shit on you about a year or two into it

What a lovely high-glare screen it has. (1)

Chris.Nelson (943214) | more than 2 years ago | (#36298368)

Really? Why do they even make those?

What's up dock? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36298900)

I'm oddly excited about the idea of docking my phone into a tablet and then docking that phone-tablet into a keyboard and then docking that phone-tablet-keyboard into a docking station for a desktop keyboard and monitor.

Re:What's up dock? (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#36299352)

I'm oddly excited about the idea of docking my phone into a tablet and then docking that phone-tablet into a keyboard and then docking that phone-tablet-keyboard into a docking station for a desktop keyboard and monitor.

Somehow I think you Rule 34'd this discussion. Congrats.

Actually could be and interesting concept (1)

cusco (717999) | more than 2 years ago | (#36299660)

I've never liked smart phones, they're just an inconvenient form factor for me and because of the ten zillion things they doing/prepared to do their battery life stinks. I'm sometimes on my cell phone for six hours at a shot, and if the signal is at all weak my smart phone needs to be plugged in by the end of the first hour, while my old 'dumb' phone used to last almost all day.

I like the idea of being able to take my dumb phone, plug it into a nice, portable tablet to do the things that the smart phone form factor make horrible, then toss it back in my pocket.

Re:Actually could be and interesting concept (1)

node 3 (115640) | more than 2 years ago | (#36301136)

Why wouldn't you just get a phone and a tablet, instead of a phone and a tablet-shell?

Re:Actually could be and interesting concept (1)

cusco (717999) | more than 2 years ago | (#36301914)

Communications and data consistency. My experience with tablets (admittedly limited) is that their communications suck, while trying to update a spreadsheet or connect to a remote server on a phone is a miserable experience. If the dumb phone can provide good communications and the tablet can give me a decent user experience doing my work I'd be a happy camper.

To be truthful, I'd probably never unplug the phone from the tablet if the interface between them were good enough. Since I'm never without my laptop and use my bluetooth headset consistently with the phone I'd be happy just having the two things be one unit. I realize that wouldn't work for most people so I never expect to actually see that device on the market, but this combo is pretty close.

An idea of mine (1)

maofunction (1537913) | more than 2 years ago | (#36299664)

Have the tablet dock to a base that contains a much larger battery, a much larger harddrive, a dedicated GPU (not CPU) for gaming purposes, an optical disc drive as well as other common media ports, and a of course, keyboard/mousepad. That would be neat. Together, they would create a mid-level gaming laptop with a reasonable battery life. Apart, the screen part would serve as a normal ipad for casual reading, emailing, media, text-editing, and other web activities.
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