Transformer Prime detailed: 10-inch Super IPS+ display, 12-hour battery and quad-core Tegra 3, ships in December for $499
Remember how we speculated that the final Eee Pad MeMO may come with a 3D display, courtesy of its teaser? Turns out we were right after all, as ASUS’ Jonney Shih has just confirmed a glassesless 3D, 1280 x 800 IPS display for this 7-inch Honeycomb slate, which is now dubbed Eee Pad MeMO 3D. We’re also told that the accompanying MeMIC Bluetooth headset will be thrown into the box, though we’re still waiting on dates and prices. Until then check out the gallery below and hear our first second third impressions in the video after the break.
The world’s love affair with tablets may have been bubbling along under the surface for a while, but it really got started in earnest during CES 2010. Back in those wild days, you could see 15-inch jumbo screens, TV tuners, and even hybrid pseudo-laptops stalking the tablet area of your favorite trade show. ASUS was there too, of course, though it still believed in the upstart smartbook category — a modernized take on the netbook that relied on an ARM CPU and a mobile OS to extract more battery life out of a lighter, thinner device — and was busy showing off a seductively slim prototype of just such a machine. Alas, nothing came of that Neo concept, most likely because it was relying on Android 1.6 and a Tegra 2 system-on-chip that was then still months away from hitting the market.
Never mind the cringe-inducing advertising, ASUS has given us a much better reason to care about its Tegra 2-toting Eee Pad Transformer: a $400 price. The 10.1-inch Honeycomb tablet (with 1280 x 800 resolution on an IPS display) has quickly moved from its Taiwanese release, through yesterday’s UK pricing announcement, to today showing up at Best Buy in the US, so we suspect its global shipping can’t be far off at all. With a sticker that’s a clear $99 less than the cheapest iPad and a good deal more affordable than its Android competition like the Xoom and G-Slate, the Transformer could yet take the tablet world by storm. Do take note that the keyboard dock that inspires this slate’s name is an optional extra, but given the starting price, the whole package might still end up less than what others will ask.