Asus' Eee Slate EP121/B121: A Windows 7-Based Tablet PC

Tablet PC Takes On The Tablet

Update 10/11/11: Asus has released a version of the EP121 specifically for the US market. It carries the model number B121, but it's exactly the same as the EP121, except that you get Windows 7 Professional and Computrace LoJack.

There are tablets, and then there are tablet PCs. Do you know the difference? Tablets like the iPad use a mobile operating system and touchscreen. Tablet PCs like the Axiotron Modbook are more equivalent to the notebooks with which we're familiar, as they support desktop operating systems and rely on a digital pen in lieu of a mouse.

Vanilla tablets continue gaining momentum. They're small. They're sexy. They're generally fast-enough for basic content consumption. But the underlying software infrastructure is a continuous source of frustration for many people. With a Modbook, I can run any OS X-based program. The iPad limits me to apps from the official Apple App Store.

If you're not willing to compromise on software compatibility, dipping your toe into the tablet pool is going to be a chilling experience. The only way to enjoy a similar form factor without trading out your favorite applications is to slide into the more comfortable jacuzzi of tablet PC bliss. Despite a promising introduction by Microsoft, these mobile computers are really pretty rare, which is somewhat surprising given their simultaneous portability and interoperability with Windows-based programs. The performance of a tablet PC is limited only by the hardware a vendor can cram inside.

The latest Windows-based tablet comes from Asus. Dubbed the Eee Slate, it offers something different for those of you tired with all the iPad and Android-based tablet talk.

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SpecificationsAsus Eee Slate
CPUCore i5-470UM (Arrandale), 1.33 GHz, 3 MB Smart Cache, 2C/4T, 18 W TDP, 32 nm
Screen12.1" WSVGA (1280x800)
Memory4 GB DDR3-800 SO-DIMM
System DriveSanDisk P4 SSD 64 GB, SATA 3Gb/s
GraphicsIntel HD Graphics, 166 MHz Base Frequency, 500 MHz Max. Dynamic Frequency
Operating SystemWindows 7 Home Premium
Wireless802.11b/g/n, Bluetooth
  • Maziar
    Looks good but IMO,Win7 isn't designed for touch screens.Hopefully Win8 will add a decent touch UI to the OS which makes the Windows tablets more useful
  • hardcore_gamer
    Intel HD graphics..that ruined everything
  • I think thats the worst idea in tablet world; putting windows 7 on a tablet... dealing with sidebars even makes me sick on 24" screen with a hi-res mouse... I cant think of it on 12" screen with fingers... and thats already tried and failed a few years ago; tablet PC's... Will somebody take any lesson from failed ideas? or even from Ipad's success? Grow-up and see what's happening... or leave it all to Apple...
  • back_by_demand
    All this tells me is that the inevitable rise of Fusion or Sandybridge with integrated graphics, or ION based tablets, Windows 8 will steal the show.

    When the hardware gets to a good enough standard then the peoiple will flock to a REAL operating system.

  • DjEaZy
    ... whardcore_gamerIntel HD graphics..that ruined everything... AMD's Fusion would be a better choice...
  • boiler1990
    I'd like a W8 tablet that could simply change interfaces between the WP7-esque look in tablet mode and a W7-like interface with the addition of a keyboard dock (basically a W8 Transformer).
  • I current own a ASUS slate. For those who are interested in this tablet. Here is my suggestion. Get the 2G ram/32G SDD one. and upgrade the ram to 4G and intel X310 series 80G. the final price will be abour $50 more than 4G/64G one; however, u gain better SSD performace as well as more storage. I have been using this one for 3 monthes now, I would say, compare to wacom's other drawing table, this one still a little beyond, however, when u compare with Wacom's Cintiq12WX, Slate does provide the same function, without an extra computer. I would say 256 level vs 1024 level is a little trade off for convenience and price. As a graphic designer (not illustrator), i dont really find the 256 level is a huge issue. Tho if ASUS intend to relseae 2nd Gen of this product' i will be really interested in seeing them switch to AMD fusion. intel's HD chip is simply a joke. I would trade off some CPU power for more powerful graphic. Anyway, final thought.. this is the only table with pen function that can run Adobe CS5. I only hope it wont be hard to find the replacement battery...
  • Phu5ion
    A tablet with Intel graphics and Windows OS? What a waste.
  • spsfinest
    Why is there no page for battery life? Was this thing such a poor performer you were to embarrassed for it to post the info Tom?
  • acku
    @spsfinest -> Page 9