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Asus Transformer Prime TF201: A Tablet With A Higher Calling

Transformer Prime TF201: Our Favorite Android Tablet

Tablets represent a new gadget category. You can buy one, but it won't replace your notebook. As a result, you end up with a growing list of "things" to carry around, each nifty in its own regard. Cumulatively, though, they're a pain in the rear. When you have a laptop, cell phone, and tablet all banging around in a bag, you wonder what ever happened to that horrible cliche word: convergence? Just as important, how did three different device manufacturers convince you to spend $500 bucks or more on their products?

Asus' Transformers effectively bridge the tablet and netbook/notebook spaces. They make it easier to accomplish productivity-oriented tasks on a tablet that might have only been good for content consumption previously. Just adding that keyboard (and its secondary battery) expands the device's repertoire significantly. 

Without question, the number one reason our editors still take notebooks on the road with them is because keyboards are imperative for getting work done.

Beyond its utility as a workhorse, we're also glad to see Nvidia (and, by proxy, Asus) go after gaming, too. The top tablet titles cannot stand up to the games we play on our PCs. However, we still need diversions on the road, and it's nice to have an increasingly library of software with respectable graphics at our disposal. We saw plenty of cool stuff at this year's Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, and we're confident that developers will continue piling in for this party. The fact that Android supports wireless game controllers also helps open up a new role for tablets as quasi game consoles.

We know Asus is working hard on its next mobility-oriented launch. For now, though, the Transformer Prime TF201 is our favorite Android-based tablet. Yes, it has its faults. Asus missed the mark with GPS functionality, for example. But the company stepped up to address the problem with an external GPS dongle. That’s the type of response we expect from a company that wants a position at the top of a given segment. Incidentally, its four-month-old tablet still competes readily against newer hardware.

  • killerclick
    Is this a joke? Wait for the new iPad to come out and then review the Transformer Prime? Why didn't you review it sooner? Did Asus miss a payment or did Apple give you a little extra to keep a lid on it?
    Reply
  • lancelot123
    Wake me when it is running Windows on a x86 CPU so I can install whatever I want for free.
    Reply
  • cangelini
    9530586 said:
    Is this a joke? Wait for the new iPad to come out and then review the Transformer Prime? Why didn't you review it sooner? Did Asus miss a payment or did Apple give you a little extra to keep a lid on it?

    Because we didn't have it sooner.
    Reply
  • joytech22
    I was thinking of getting this until I caught wind of the Transformer T701.
    I think the 1080p display is worth the wait.
    Reply
  • DjEaZy
    ... that thing with the splash effect... i do believe, that it iz a program issue... 3rd gen iPad haz power to burn... you can program some splashes... it's like M$ say, that, to play crysis and see the rays thru treas, you needed vista and DX 10... it turned out, that it waz a tweak, that enabled it on XP too... and i believe, if apple will implement some open standard of some physics engine, like Bullet Open Source Physics, all of the open standard devices will benefit, android and iOS alike... and nVidia physx will be not relevant... to program some separate android+nVidia version of a game? ...when there is many different android devices, that don't use Tegra? ... it could end for nVidia, like it ended for 3DFX with there glide engine... 3Dfx waz killed by OpenGL and DirectX... 3Dfx's Glide waz visually superior, but OpenGL and DirectX helped then ATi and nVidia to go multiplatform and to the masses...
    ... so, my point waz... prime is a nice thingy, but, if there are proprietary stuff on a open platform, like android... i don't believe, that Tegra can get some momentum without going open source... the question is... how big is the Tegra's market share on the android platform? ... and... is the market share for Tegra so big, that they can insist to use there proprietary things?...
    Reply
  • "While the Transformer Prime supports output over microHDMI, it cannot push 1080p through the wire" ...When using hardware decoding, Transformer Prime actually pushes true 1080p-video to the television (..while the tablets screen remains unused = black). As an owner of TF201, I can confirm this.
    Reply
  • mily
    U're bienvenida: D Gracias por venir a mi artículo .. Espero que lea mis otros artículos

    .. Me interesa conocer sus puntos de vista .. gracias :)
    Echo de menos los comentarios de Lippo durante el proceso de ruptura de la pared, no puedo

    creer que redujo el papel de Lippo como el
    camisetas hombre
    Reply
  • joytech22
    DjEaZymy point waz... prime is a nice thingy, but, if there are proprietary stuff on a open platform, like android... i don't believe, that Tegra can get some momentum without going open source... the question is... how big is the Tegra's market share on the android platform? ... and... is the market share for Tegra so big, that they can insist to use there proprietary things?...
    Ehh...? I have no idea what you are trying to get at.
    Is it your first time on the internet? :\
    Reply
  • DjEaZy
    DjEaZy... that thing with the splash effect... i do believe, that it iz a program issue... 3rd gen iPad haz power to burn... you can program some splashes... it's like M$ say, that, to play crysis and see the rays thru treas, you needed vista and DX 10... it turned out, that it waz a tweak, that enabled it on XP too... and i believe, if apple will implement some open standard of some physics engine, like Bullet Open Source Physics, all of the open standard devices will benefit, android and iOS alike... and nVidia physx will be not relevant... to program some separate android+nVidia version of a game? ...when there is many different android devices, that don't use Tegra? ... it could end for nVidia, like it ended for 3DFX with there glide engine... 3Dfx waz killed by OpenGL and DirectX... 3Dfx's Glide waz visually superior, but OpenGL and DirectX helped then ATi and nVidia to go multiplatform and to the masses... ... so, my point waz... prime is a nice thingy, but, if there are proprietary stuff on a open platform, like android... i don't believe, that Tegra can get some momentum without going open source... the question is... how big is the Tegra's market share on the android platform? ... and... is the market share for Tegra so big, that they can insist to use there proprietary things?...joytech22Ehh...? I have no idea what you are trying to get at.Is it your first time on the internet? :\... smoke some and you will get the full picture...
    Reply
  • In Italy Asus decided not to give the free dongle, because they say that it was selled as a localization system, and not a GPS, therefor, they will not help us improve our tablet experience. Since the prime doesn't have a 3G connectivity, I don't think the GPS is that important, also, a 10" GPS is quite annoying. I prefer to use the phone. Great review by the way. Although I don't trust benchmarka, nor asus ICS updates. At the biginning the wi-fi was working great, no overconsumption of power, now my battery drains in hours.
    Reply