ASUS Eee Pad Transformer TF101-B1 10.1-Inch Tablet Computer (Tablet Only)
I was lucky enough to wake up early today and go to Memory Express in Edmonton and they had one. Stores received a limited amount of tablets and they were all sold out within hours, including here on Amazon. I've been playing with this thing for hours now and so far I've only had great experiences with it.
The main feature for me is the remote desktop: you can access your PC, whether it's a Mac or a PC, if they're both connected to your home wi-fi connection. You can control your PC from anywhere and use all of its features. I watched a HD movie and worked on MS Word docs, everything went smoothly.
The tablet doesn't weigh much for its size and the IPS screen is amazing, it's the same screen used on the iPad 2. I'm not a person who needs to buy products made by just one brand. I like Apple and I own a iPhone 4, but when it came to deciding which tablet to buy, I went for the Transformer because it offers me a tablet/netbook function, the best of both worlds.
The tablet itself has a microSD card slot so I already have 32GB more to use it. The docking station (which can be purchased by 149.99) has 2 USB ports and 1 SD Card slot.
You can edit Microsoft Office docs on it using Polaris Office, it's great and this app comes pre-installed on it. Playing mp3s or acc files on it it's great too. You can use the app MyNet to play music from your own PC or Mac, via bluetooth.
I'm playing SNES games using SNESoid app and using a Wiimote/Classic Controller via Bluetooth and everything works great! It has native email (which Blackberry Playbook doesn't) and you can sync your calendar and contacts easily. It has full flash compatibility. For $399, there's nothing on the market with these specs. The Motorola Xoom has similar specs and it costs $200 more. It doesn't give you the option to attach a docking station with all those slots. When I buy computers, I want to be able to upload content to it easily, or transfer files from it easily as well. The Apple system is ok but needing iTunes for everything is kinda like a dictatorship. I had to jailbreak my iPhone to be able to play SNES games on it, or even listen to music on Grooveshark. That's where the Android Market comes in.
You can download any apps you want, any developer can create apps for it, it's a "free" system. It's not as wide as the App Store, but it's getting bigger and bigger by the minute. I downloaded the Kindle app and already transferred all my e-books to it (I also own a Kindle and I love it).
There are some quirks that have to be tweaked with Honeycomb 3.0 OS and that's something Google is working on. That's easy since updates will be released (an update is scheduled in 2 days). So that will improve the overall performance of the OS. But I honestly didn't have any issues with it, I really like Honeycomb 3.0 so far.
I definitely recommend this thing for people who want to use their tablets as an extension or even a replacement to their laptops. Asus has hit a home run with this one, since it costs much less than anybody else and its specs are great. It's hands down the best purchase I've had under 400 bucks.
The docking station is sold out anywhere else but I pre-ordered it on Amazon and I'm hoping to get it in a couple of weeks. I'll post a video with the combo once I get everything up and running. I'm a iOS person who's welcoming Android with open arms!
Review Update: Apr 29 2011 - Ok, so I've been using my Transformer for a few days so I'd like to add a few pros and cons to this review.
Pros: beside what's been mentioned above, I noticed that:
- multitasking is really easy on the Transformer. You can quickly jump from one app to the other, check e-mails, browse something on Wikipedia, listen to music and even have your Skype session open at the same time. I was chatting with my dad and multitasking and had no issues. The Skype app needs updates, but that's nothing to do with Asus.
- File Manager: this feature is great! You don't have to hook up your Transformer to your computer all the time to move, copy or paste files. You can create new folders and even transfer files from your microSD card straight to it. I transferred a movie from my microsd Card folder (path is rootremovable to access microSD files) to my Movies folder and it was very quick. And I didn't need to plug it in in order to access or move the files.
- Widgets: Your Desktop Area (Or Asus Launcher) is very wide so you can add many widgets to it, and they're very handy. That's something that can't be done on the iPad 2. Mind you Widgets can affect the speed a bit, but nothing noticeable at all. Those people running speed tests between iPad 2 and the Transformer need to bear that in mind.
- Weight: believe it or not, it doesn't feel heavy at all for its size.
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