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Why The Asus Padfone Will Be Dead On Arrival

Eric McBride
32

 

The Asus Padfone has been a pretty hot topic around the offices here at AndroidPIT, and with the new concept that it offers, consumer interest for the device is definitely there. Is the concept cool? Yes. Is it original and out of the box thinking? Yes. Could it's concept be a game changer in some way? Yes. Is it worth the money? No. Will it do well in the market? No. In fact, as much as I like the concept and thinking behind it, the Asus Padfone will be more or less DOA (dead on arrival) as soon as it hits the market, and here's why.

This is 1 device, not 2

Now I know many of you have seen the device, and make no mistake the concept of what it APPEARS to be is cool. But looks can certainly be deceiving, and that's exactly the word I like to use when describing this device: deceiving. Let's go on record and get this clear. The Asus Padfone is NOT a phone AND a tablet. I cannot stress that enough. It's a phone with a "tablet display“, meaning that without the phone, the "tablet display“ is absolutely useless. When the phone is inside the "tablet display“ it can then ACT as a tablet, but only when the phone is docked with it. It's very important to remember this point, especially considering that in the picture above, you see a phone and tablet acting seperately. What Asus does NOT want you to see is the fact that the "tablet display“ (running on the right side appearingly without a phone) can't in any way be used without the phone being docked with it. So anyone who still wants to argue that this is a phone and a tablet should stop right now, because it isn't

Nothing groundbreaking hardware wise

It's already deceiving enough that it many ways this is being marketed as a phone AND a tablet, but what's as equally ridiculous is the pricing. The dual core device from Asus, a company with more or less no traction or reputation at all in the phone market costs 610 USD WITHOUT the tablet dock, or keyboard. So 610 gets you a dual core 1.5ghz (yes, specwise it's not bad..but nothing groundbreaking. I know it's not just a processor that makes a phone good :-D) device from a company that has done good with Android tablets (I'm not knocking Asus here, as they have done some GREAT work), but absolutely nothing with Android phones. If you want to have that pretty tablet display and keyboard, it will cost you another 240 for the tablet dock, and another 130 for the keyboard. That's 980 dollars...for a phone......a dual core phone.....with a tablet that's not a tablet.....So lets just forget the "tablet display“ and keyboard for a minute and focus on that 610 dollar price tag. Since 610 is still certainly a lot for a phone, what other options would you have for that money?

You could have a phone and a real tablet for the same money (less actually)

Well, the HTC One S for starters. Not only is it made by a company that has a reputation for making durable and stylish cell phones, but it's also currently selling at this moment on Amazon.de for 489 Euros NEW. That's 641 US dollars, and that's the EU price for the device. So you tell me...610 for a debut phone from Asus, or 30 dollars more for a phone from HTC that was the talk of Mobile World Congress. Hell, for another 60 or 70 bucks you could even buy the quad core packing HTC One X! So even on just a phone vs phone basis, you could get HTC's newest models for a few bucks more (based on EU pricing), or you could get yourself an HTC Sensation XE that also runs a 1.5GHz dual core processor for 509 dollars on Amazon NEW. That's over 100 dollars cheaper than the new Asus Padfone (just the phone alone with no extra screen or keyboard).

But what about the tablet? Well lookie here...It's the Asus Transformer Prime with 16 gigs space a quad core packing Tegra 3 processor NEW and directly from Amazon for 499 dollars. If you want the dock it will cost you 150 more, making it 649 dollars. So basically, you could have a TRUE quad core packing tablet that actually IS A TABLET with dock AND a dual core 1.5ghz phone 1158 dollars. If you wanted the tablet without the keyboard dock, you could have both for barely over a thousand (1009 dollars to be exact). "But Eric, you're over the 980 dollars that it costs for the Padfone..you suck!!“. Umm..NO. Remember, for 980 dollars you get a DUAL core phone and a display...NOT a tablet. With my option, for less than 1200 you get a dual core phone running at 1.5ghz AND a quad core tablet witha  keyboard (without the keyboard, you're at 1008 USD). And if I really wanna put a dagger in the hard of this thing, why not just buy the HTC Sensation XE for 512, and then the dual core Asus Transformer Eee Pad for 358 dollars new? That way, you spend less than 900 dollars, and have TWO dual core devices that can be used seperately.

And let's not forget that carriers will subsidize all of these. It's already being reported you can have the One X for 199USD with a contract. Even if you could get a subsidized price of say....400 (it won't be that cheap) for the Padfone, does it make sense? After all, you are in essence only getting one piece of hardware with an expandable display.

Bottom Line

Again, I love the concept of this device..I really do. But for what's actually being offered hardware wise (and the "number of devices you're actually getting wise“), there will be cheaper, more powerful, and much more realistic choices for consumers (like 2 devices instead of just one for a cheaper price). I wish Asus the best of luck, as I have a lot of respect for them when it comes to the Eee Pad and Transformer Prime. But as far as the Padfone goes, consumers won't buy it when more realistic choices for the same price and cheaper are currently on the market. I want our readers to have the best option for their hard earned money, and without bashing Asus, I have to be completely honest and tell you now that the Padfone simply isn't the best option (far from it). 

Asus: Show me this same concept, only where both can act as stand alone devices, have an option to dock with each other AND with quad core processors in both devices and THEN you'll have consumers sold on it.

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Comments

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  • Zack Teo Apr 11, 2012 Link

    Hi Eric,

    You made very good points in the above analysis of the Asus padfone. I, for one, realized after several researches on the Padfone itself. At 610, it definitely is a very expensive phone with no unique features. I also managed to research that the tablet is useless without the phone as the phone acts as the brain of the whole device.

    However, despite your point above, you failed to take note the cost of having 2 data plans for both the HTC and the other tablet. I know that there are other ways to share the data plan by obtaining 2 SIM cards from your Telco. But that option increases the security risk. Once one of your 2 mobile devices is stolen, your data plan is compromised as the thief would have access to you mobile number and is free to make any number of calls they want, be it local or international.

    Furthermore, having 2 different mobile devices with different storages, indicates that you will have trouble transferring information/pictures/video from one device to another. I do not mean significant trouble, but just a greater inconvenience which Asus is trying to eliminate.

    Another point to note is the charging function of the Padfone. With so many applications, games and the use of 3G technology, phones nowadays have such a short battery life. What Asus is providing is the convenience of having a charging station with a larger display screen. 5x with the tablet, 9x with the docking station.

    Last but not least, they provide the bluetooth stylus handset as well, which is a great idea as shown in their commercial of the girl "Jessie". Able to conveniently pick up a call whilst using the tablet function. I believe that this bluetooth handset is not commonly available as well.

    I agree with the many points that you made especially the one about the tablet not being able to function without the use of the phone. I believe that not many people realized that; particularly the price of the tablet being set at only $250USD. Furthermore, the lack of a quad core processor does seem lacking despite many companies launching their new phones with that feature.

    The only drawback I have with it is that Asus took too long to launch this product. Should they have launched it last year in September 2011, it would be a revolutionary device, unique and in-sync with the current technology. Should they have launched it in February 2012, it would have still made the cut off. But launching it in late April 2012 has caused it to fall very much behind.

    But all in all, as a techie, I do like the concept of the Asus padfone. And since my phone plan is expiring soon, I have the intention of getting this new piece of technology.

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  • Bronika Daw Apr 11, 2012 Link

    cooool

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  • User picture
    Barry Fruitman Apr 11, 2012 Link

    Eric I think you're missing the point: that fact that it's one device is actually the advantage.

    I used to have two computers: a powerful desktop that I kept at the office and a decent laptop I used at home. After a few years of this arrangement I got sick of constantly syncing and managing two computers, so I bought a high-end laptop and a docking station. Now I have the best of both worlds and only one computer to manage. I will never buy another desktop computer again.

    The way I see it, the Padfone is the phone/tablet equivalent of my laptop/desktop solution.

    That said, the Padfone is not the device for me, either, mainly because the specs are pretty average, as you point out. Hopefully Samsung will have a competitor in place by the time I'm in the market for a new tablet...

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  • Eric McBride Apr 11, 2012 Link

    Hi Zack and Barry!

    Thanks for reading guys! @Zack: You made some very good points here as well. In terms of data plans for seperate devices, yes that is true. However, in my eyes it simply doesnt justify the excess cost. The stylus as well will most likely only be used by people who have a specific reason for using it (for drawing, editing, ect) and most likely wont be used too often by the masses. And you really hit it on the head with timing. A year ago, this could have been a game changer. Now, its just an overpriced gimmick that only tech conscious consumers might purchase.

    @Barry - If the fact that its one device should be the advantage, it should be PRICED as if its one device, and thats a big issue I have with the Padfone. Remember, we also have to think about this from a consumer standpoint. If you ask 9 out of 10 consumers if they would rather have 1 Xbox for X price or 2 Xboxes for the SAME price, Im sure you would agree that most would pick 2. Sure there might be some additional costs (extra data plan =extra tv/higher electric consumption, 2nd TV, ect), but most consumers are out to get the most for their money.

    To make it clear, MOST consumers would rather have a quad core tablet AND a dual core phone for 1000 vs a dual core phone that can act as the brain of a tablet for 1000. Its the pricing thats the main issue, not the concept. Concept wise, I like the idea. But the way its being marketed (as 2 devices when its actually only 1) and priced dont justify what your actually getting for your money.

    And I agree with you on Samsung. Im hoping they turn a lot of heads with a very high end quad core device in the next months with a realistic price tag.

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  • Stefan E. Apr 11, 2012 Link

    Sorry to say, but this blog is so full of half-baked thoughts and errors it makes me cringe! First of all, please tone the drama down a bit. But I have a few thoughts on your "facts" as well:

    1. I really can't grasp why anyone didn't get the point that you can't use the station as a stand-alone tablet. It is the whole point of the concept. What sense would it make to insert a phone in a full grown tablet? To add weight as an oversized USB stick?

    Asus never made any attempt to trick anyone into thinking this nonsense. Just because they showed off the phone besides a station with phone inserted? They just wanted to show you both modes side by side for comparison. And they demonstrated the process of inserting and ejecting the phone a bazillion times!

    2. You widly mix up international pricing across multiple continents and compare them. Are you just pretending or did you really never notice that pricing can differ a lot from simple currency exchange? There are so many factors into this (like tax is out of US prices but always included in Europe). Before you get angry about the price, wait for it to be known.

    3. You fell for NVidia marketing. The Snapdragon S4 is a lot faster than the S3 and beats Tegra 3 in most calculation scenarios and especially the graphics department. Now that the AT&T variant of the HTC One X is starting to get reviews, we will have a perfect comparison between the two chipsets soon. But keep in mind: Android benchmarks never were very reliable and they are becoming obsolete fast with newer chipsets hitting the 60 fps limit in many GPU tests.

    Please think about your proposed concept of fully fledged phone and fully fledged tablet with "the same concept as the Padfone" and tell me: what would be the benefits over regular phone and tablet? I can't think of any worthwhile. For charging, better pack a dedicated charger. For the screen, why not just use the tablet as it is? For the data, you would have a lot of sync options. Padfone makes sense (at the right price), your idea doesn't.

    EDIT: I read the Anandtech report again and maybe I am wrong in the graphics department in more modern, shader heavy scenarios, where the Tegra 3 seems to have the upper hand, as the Adreno 225 is based on an older design (it is still faster in other tests). But Tegra 3 never puts S4 leaps and bounds behind, in any scenario.

    http://tinyurl.com/ccgg7ed

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  • Eric McBride Apr 11, 2012 Link

    Hi Stefan, and thanks for reading :-D

    Let me address your points one at a time. In regards to people not grasping the point of it actually only being one device, this is completely false and can be proven with the fact that MANY people had no idea that the tablet was actually only an extension of the phone. The picture itself depicts and markets the tablet that way. Did the gentleman in the picture explain that he is actually holding TWO phones and a tablet in that pic (one in his hand, and one INSIDE the display) to actually make what hes doing possible. No he didnt. The marketing for the device is way too deceptive. They demonstrated it at trade shows yes. But why were so many people surprised to find out that the phone MUST act as the brain of the tablet? Hmmm...

    As far as pricing, the fact of the matter is that if it's around 1000 USD in the States, it will be MUCH more in the rest of world, especially Europe. My Galaxy Tab 10.1 debuted at 499 dollars in the US. Here in Germany, it costed me 650 Euros. International pricing has nothing to do with the point of the article, which is for that money, I have PROVEN to you that you could have much better choices instead of a dual core phone from a company that doesnt make phones.

    Fell for Nvidia marketing? Really? I guess thats why I havent sold my Tab 10.1 and bought a Prime right? As far as quad core goes, Huwaei's new quad core processor might just smoke Samsungs in benchmarks (doubt it, but possible). Again, what does Tegra 3 have to do with the point of the article? Am I wrong in assuming that most consumers would prefer having a Tegra 3 (lets face it, its the only choice right now until Samsung and Huwaei bring out their tablets) tablet along with a dual core phone for the same price they could purchase a dual core phone for? Common.

    As far as benefits go, I have to honestly chuckle a bit if you cant see those. I can use my tablet when I travel to play games without worrying about my phone battery draining. Its just common sense that its an advantage of being able to use them seperately. If its really a feature that its actually just one device, it should be PRICED accordingly. The Padfone concept only works if the pricing is way, WAY cheaper than the reported price. Its a year too late. An all in one device should come with all in one price, and not with the pricetag of 2 supposed devices that in reality are only 1 mid range device.

    Again, if you wish to throw a grand, or even 600 dollars at a dual core phone that can in some way act as a tablet, be my guest! I for one (as most readers here) would prefer spending the same money and getting not only double the hardware, but more than triple the power.

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  • Zack Teo Apr 11, 2012 Link

    Alright guys, take a chill pill.

    I believe that each of us have valid points in all that we have stated thus far. I agree that since the Padfone is one device, it definitely should have one price for the tablet and the phone. The extra tablet docking station can be priced differently, sure.

    At $600USD, it is definitely a very expensive phone, considering that even the iPhone 4S is also priced at $399USD for the highest capacity option. But if you do wish to compare a quad core tablet and a dual core phone option as you have @Eric, you'd need to subtract off the price of the docking station. In that case, for a tablet and the phone from Asus, it will be a rough total of $860USD which is subsequently $149USD more affordable than the option you mentioned.

    Of course, the Asus transformer Eee Pad would be a different story! =D

    Cheers.

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  • Eric McBride Apr 11, 2012 Link

    @ Zack Very good points! But remember that when it came to the quad core tablet and dual core phone, this is an overkill example. The Fadfone is ONE dual core device going for that price. As I illustrated, you can easily buy a dual core phone and dual core tablet for less than 900, which I would prefer anyday over the Padfone, or for a little more cash you could have a quad tablet and dual core phone. Im not saying all people would prefer it this way, but most consumers would. The EE Pad and HTC Sensation X combined STILL in the end come in at 870 dollars together...10 dollars more than the dual core Padfone :-D

    And no worries..its all love here! Nobody is getting personal .-D

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  • Stefan E. Apr 11, 2012 Link

    You got each and every point wrong. As to the "deception" of Asus, I can play stupid as well and say "I bought a One S, where is my free One X? HTC ALWAYS displayed them next to each other". When people didn't get that the Padfone is one device with special accessories, it's because they don't think. And that is a proven fact. There are hardly any marketing shots of blank screened tablets, they always show bright colorful scenarios - why should Asus do otherwise?

    It all comes down to my question, which you were just dodging: what sense would a fully-fledged tablet with a phone hatch make?

    OK, talking about the price. To give this discussion a bit more sense, let's just stay on one continent. I fully expect the Padfone to cost €500, just like the HTC One S with much the same specs. And I expect it to cost €700 including the Station, maybe even skipping the standalone phone altogether. The Transformer keyboard docks have always cost around €150 by themselves, €100 bundled. I really hope they make a €800 package with phone, station and keyboard. I don't know what they will charge for the headset stylus, so I will just leave that out.

    On the other side you could buy a One S and a Transformer 300, which will soon be available for €500 with keyboard, €400 without. So you save €200 and the battery munching that comes with tethering your tablet to the phone (as it is WiFi only). For me, it is still interesting, but not if my prices are off by far. Also I would need to check for special offers - for example I could get a HTC One S cheaper than a Galaxy S 2 with a certain attractive contract. You always got to calculate the total costs of ownership and usage for two years. And as the prices are not yet set, you have PROVEN nothing.

    With the performance: just keep counting your cores, it's all right. I prefer counting FPS and enjoying a dual channel memory setup. What the point of Tegra 3 is in the article? Well, the point that you berated the Padfone for not having one. As I said, wait for side by side comparison of the two HTC One X, as everything besides the chipset is identical. Then we can take a look at the numbers, not the least among them the battery life.

    Where I must really wonder if you even read my post is the part were you felt like chuckling at me. I was asking you were the benefit of your proposed device with Padfone-style docking but standalone tablet unit over a regular phone and tablet were (see my question above, again). But if you find it such a big deal to save phone battery while using the tablet: with the Padfone, it is not only not getting drained, it is getting charged while using the tablet!

    @Zack: I agree it would make sense to always sell the phone with the station, and I heard rumors of Asus doing just that in Europe at least. We will soon find out, Germany is rumored to be the first non-asian country on the rollout plan, which I personally find rather beneficial. ;)

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  • Eric McBride Apr 11, 2012 Link

    @Stefan - Before we continue, I dont want you to feel personally offended by my comments. I love these kinds of discussions, and the last thing I want is to piss anyone off. So if my comments offended you, I take them back.

    Now to rip apart your argument...again :-D

    Im sorry, the but the HTC One X and One S comparison is a pretty lame example. They are 2 separate products..the Padfone is one product, but is often (not always, but often) shown and marketed as 2 products. Even with a phone and display, its ONE product, not 2.

    And I dont see how Im dodging any question here. For me personally, it would make ALOT more sense to have a tablet, a REAL TABLET with a port that my phone, a REAL SEPARATELY OPERATING PHONE, could connect to for file exchange or tethering, or to get really crazy...a power boost for running games or graphic heavy applications! THAT would make sense to me personally, and would justify the price ALOT more.

    But your example about the One S and Transformer 300 is exactly what Im getting at. There are better options. And yeah, I can PROVE it. See engadget here:

    http://www.engadget.com/2012/04/05/asus-padfone-priced-and-ready-for-pre-order-in-taiwan-tomorrow/

    That article shows the device up for preorder NOW for 980 US dollars. Price is set, point is made. And if you think that in the States and EU the prices will be 300 and 400 dollars different, they won't.

    Performance wise, I DO berate the Padfone, as its a DUAL core device being sold for a QUAD core price. Im not talking quality..Im talking price.

    I always read your posts man, and I always answer them. We dont have to agree or see eye to eye on this either. But so far, with the 980 dollar pricetag thats on preorder right now, there is absolutely no justification for buying this thing unless your a tech junkie or sleeping on piles of money :-D

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  • Steven Blum Apr 11, 2012 Link

    BRAVO, STEFAN!

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  • Eric McBride Apr 11, 2012 Link

    Yes..I also applaud his braveness :-D

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  • Steven Blum Apr 11, 2012 Link

    Eric, im going to buy a padfone just out of spite, and every day im going to walk to your office table and put the phone into the tablet like magic and then walk away

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  • Eric McBride Apr 11, 2012 Link

    LOL! Do that man! And for the money you spent on it, I ll lay a REAL tablet AND phone on your desk, point, and laugh :-D

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  • Stefan E. Apr 11, 2012 Link

    Sorry when I sounded a bit grumpy, that's because I am. But not really at you, but at Asus, as they don't provide any information for a product they announced to launch this month. And that makes the rumor mill grind hard - resulting in e.g. your article, which I still find wrong. Still I didn't want to insult you, just voice my thoughts on your arguments. I will keep myself more civil now.

    I am not talking about HTC One X vs One S, I am talking about HTC One X in Tegra 3 and Snapdragon S4 flavors (here in Germany, you will only get the former, the latter comes to the US with e.g. AT&T).

    You can tether a regular phone to a tablet via bluetooth or WiFi. And you can charge it much more efficiently with a much smaller portable charging device. If need be, you can probably charge the phone with the tablet via USB - if you can't find a micro to micro cable, you could still use an adapter. This also goes for file exchange (but you could more easily just swap the micro SD cards or use WiFi). So nothing much won with your proposed device - except that the hatch would add a lot of bulk (just like it does to the padfone station). Sharing calculation power is technically not feasible, except for maybe raytracing or SETI. ;)

    The Padfone price is set now for Taiwan. What does the HTC One S and the Transformer 300 cost there? That would make a better comparison. Still not impressed by the number of cores alone, the performance counts, and core by core the Krait CPU of the S4 is much faster than any Cortex A9 (as in Tegra 3). Also the Tegra 3 still features a single channel memory controller, which is a bottleneck in certain situations which might not even be touched by most benchmarks.

    BTW: I do get the point that I can't use the Padfone as phone and tablet seperately. Having two kids, I really gave that point a lot of thought - it might not matter at all to singles though.

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  • Eric McBride Apr 11, 2012 Link

    @Stefan - its all good man! I wasnt offended at all. Actually the opposite, as I love to hear different views on controversial technology!

    The price is Taiwan point you made is also valid. But as you can see here:

    http://www.techzek.com/htc-one-x-v-china-price-release-date-set-on-april-2/

    ..prices in Taiwan are normally the same as US prices, as the HTC One X price in Taiwan is almost spot on what it costs in the US without a contract. If thats the case, that means in Europe, it will most likely cost even more.

    And Im all on your side on the processor. I think I wont be impressed that much with Tegra until Tegra4 comes out, as it SEEMS they may have finally got it right with that one :-D

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  • Stefan E. Apr 11, 2012 Link

    Tegra 4 will have Cortex A15 (and probably 4 of them), which will likely be a little faster core by core than Krait (which is close to but AFAIK not quite a Cortex A15). That kind of performance will be mind blowing on a portable device, I wonder when and what kind of apps can utilize that - probably only a few high profile games and of course emulators (which will munch anything you can throw at them). ;)

    So we are all good and I am happily awaiting your apologetic article if the Padfone comes at €650 including tablet! *g*

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  • Eric McBride Apr 11, 2012 Link

    HAHA! If it comes at 650 Euros including the display, your STILL only getting a dual core phone/dual core kinda tablet in the end :-D Nice try bro :-D But at that price, it would for sure have a better chance in the market.

    I also read that about Tegra 4, but it will also be interesting to see which architecture Samsung pulls out of its hat in 2013, and maybe even Intel!

    And of course we're all good :-D I had a blast debating this with you :)

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  • Stefan E. Apr 11, 2012 Link

    At 650, it'd be a steal, at 700, reasonable IMHO. Wait and see, wait and see... oh get your stuff sorted Asus!!! ;)

    Samsung will be utilizing the Cortex A15 as well, but probably combining it with a newer revision of the Mali GPU. This battle won't differ much on the raw processing power front, only the graphics scores might matter. Intel is still struggling to get close to ARM in energy efficiency, and their GPUs are still rubbish, that's why they license PowerVR for Atoms now. :)

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  • Eric McBride Apr 11, 2012 Link

    On the processor topic, I totally agree :-D...but what I hope is that finally..FOR ONCE that these quad core processors will finally be accompanied by 2 gigs of RAM! Why is it that its always 1 gig? Only Huawei has announced a tablet with 2 gigs so far, and it wont be out for a few weeks longer.

    I still cant understand why though. Surely it would make a big difference in overall performance, which matters a lot more to me than graphic based (ie gaming) performance.

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  • Stefan E. Apr 11, 2012 Link

    That is because current ARM CPUs (even Krait AFAIK) sadly are not capable of adressing more than one GB of RAM. That will finally change with Cortex A15 as it can adress up to 1TB - that should suffice for a few years... ;)

    I am not sure what Huawai was talking about (read that too), still sceptical on that anouncement.

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  • Eric McBride Apr 11, 2012 Link

    AHHHHHHHHHHH...I get it now! Thanks for clearing that up man! I figured it must have been a hardware compatibility issue, but was never sure what exactly.

    In regards to the Huawei tablet, check the Verge hands on review with the tablet here:

    http://www.theverge.com/2012/2/26/2825387/huawei-mediapad-10-fhd-android-quad-core

    Its packing 2 gigs or RAM, but considering they built the quad core chip themselves, it makes sense that they addressed this issue when building it. All hands on tests have been really positive about the device.

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  • Stefan E. Apr 11, 2012 Link

    I have read the 2GB figure often enough, but did not read a single technical discussion about it. Until I see that in action or have some engineer explain how they achieved that with Cortex A9 technology, I tend to not believing it.

    That "review" is just a few pictures with hardly any technical info - nice ones, though. :)

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  • Eric McBride Apr 11, 2012 Link

    True :-D I guess we will see soon though. I mean, this new chip was a big theme at Mobile World Congress, and they threw those specs around very confidently to everyone who asked, including us. I guess we'll see soon though, as we'll reportedly be able to purchase the device around the middle of this year.

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  • Peter Warren Apr 14, 2012 Link

    Your remarks (as far as they go) seem valid - BUT you are not looking at the whole picture. You assume that a "real" tablet plus a smartphone is better, more valuable, than Asus' phone + PadPhone. It isn't and in fact the opposite is the case, An ExoTablet (which is what the PadPhone is, and I hold the US patents for it) is considerably better than a stand-alone smartphone + a comparable quality of standalone connected tablet for the following reasons which summarise as cheaper and less hassle: 1) No connection electronics to pay for in the tablet part 2) no or reduced monthly connection fee 3) zero time and cost to synchronize administrate and secure "tablet" data 4) no second set of apps to pay install and administrate 5) multiplies smartphone battery time 6) easy swap between smartphone call and tablet phone call (if the thing is built properly so the smartphone slips easily in and out - see our website www.exotablet,com for how it should be done with an adaptor sleeve enabling many smartphones to use a selection of different ExoTablets adapted for different purposes. In fact the one and only downside to the ExoTablet way of making a connected tablet is, that you can't use the smartphone and the tablet simultaneously, Since the Mk I body I have got only has 2 eyeballs and 2 hands, all of which need to use 1 device, that is not a bid deal as using a smartphone and tablet simultaneously is something I only do when I am pretending to be clever than I really am.. On the other hand, if one is a techno-masochist and not an ease of use freak as I am, a stand alone smartphone plus a standalone connected tablet is better as you can suffer more, both financially and aggravationally..

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  • Stefan E. Apr 16, 2012 Link

    Here we go! 699 with 32GB and Tablet station, like i predicted! *epic win sound playing in the background* :D

    http://www.netbooknews.de/67284/transformer-pad-300-700-padfone-asus-gibt-preise-fur-europa-bekannt

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  • Eric McBride Apr 17, 2012 Link

    Whoa! Its 699 euros plus another 149 euros for the keyboard. That's 850 euros...which is 1117 US dollars. I predicted that it would cost more in Europe than the US, and unfortunately it does. Even at 699 euros with no keyboard, thats 918 USD for the phone and dock minus the keyboard. Pretty damn expensive.

    It would have been WAY more competitive if it would have been 699 euros WITH the dock AND keyboard. As it stands now, its going for the same pricing that the Xoom debuted in Germany, which was pretty damn high at 699 euros.

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  • Stefan E. Apr 17, 2012 Link

    You are jumping back and forth - at €650 ($847) you said it would be "a better chance in the market". Now at just €50 ($65) more, its "Whoa! Pretty damn expensive".

    As I said, let's put it in european context. If you compare it to a HTC One S, which costs €500, you get the Padfone Station (and double the storage) for €200 more. I'd say that is realistic. I still hope they put up a complete bundle for €800 though, as the keyboard would sure be a nice addition. But €200 extra charge for the station and the keyboard, when the Transformer keyboard costs €100-€150 on itself, is just a lot to ask.

    And you know as well as I do that recommended retail prices in Europe not only include tax, but they tend to be undercut by street prices by a noticable margin (except for Apple products usually).

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  • Eric McBride Apr 17, 2012 Link

    Yes, at 650 it would be for sure, and I hoped to see a keyboard WITH that price. But like you said, with an 800 euro bundle that includes the keyboard, it is a pretty nice option. If they cut it at 800 with tab screen and keyboard, and then amazon cuts it to 750, it could look alot more attractive to consumers.

    Lets see! Its expensive, but it could still grab some consumer attention.But either way, "pretty good deal" or not, its still an expensive device. What me and you think of it matters little. This device will have to convince them more than iPads/iPhones and other Android devices. Thats where it will run into problems.

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  • Stefan E. Apr 17, 2012 Link

    I just wanted it to be a valid option for me and others with similar interests. I need a new phone this summer, and I would like to have a tablet. I did never think this would be the one device for everybody, Android is about choice.

    And let's face it - a phone alone for €500 is expensive as well. You could do a lot of the stuff with a €200 device as well, it is just not what we enthusiasts want. The difference between the men and the boys is the price of the toys... ;)

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  • Eric McBride Apr 17, 2012 Link

    Thats very true. 500euros is a hell of a lot of money! And if you get the device, let me know how you like it! I would love to do a writeup blog on your experience with it.

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  • Ravi S Dec 18, 2012 Link

    This looks pretty awesome but I dont see any big use except it is just a phone afterall. I would go for it if atleast I can use the docking station separately as a regular monitor so I can connect my Mac Mini. That way, this is just an amazing innovation.

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