Loving gadgets can be an expensive hobby. While everyone might want a smartphone, a tablet, and a laptop, not everyone can afford all three. And if you’re going to buy all 3, why settle for anything but a seamless experience? The ASUS Padfone is a fantastic concept that will save consumers money, offer greater seamlessness between devices, and the concept is executed beautifully.
Regardless of whether you’re using the phone, the tablet, or the laptop, it’s the guts of the phone (Qualcomm MSM8260A Snapdragon S4 Krait dual-core 1.5GHz processor) that powers everything. However, each of the three components – the phone, tablet, and keyboard – all have their own battery. This makes perfect sense considering how quickly a tablet or laptop would drain the tiny battery of a smartphone, but the setup provides an added benefit: the tablet (6600 mAh battery) will power both the keyboard (unknown mAh) and phone (1520 mAh battery) when connected. Essentially, you’re tablet is also a backup battery source!
The PadFone runs Android 4.0 which is a blessing right off the bat. There appears to be some slight customizations, but nothing too offensive to the stock Android lover. Pop your phone into the tablet and you’re running ICS on the tablet. Connect the keyboard and you’re suddenly trackpadding, clicking, and typing rather flawlessly. It’s always nice to have your devices sync… but when your one device IS three devices, no syncing necessary; you’ve already got everything you need.
The Padfone screen is 4.3-inches with 960 x 540 pixel resolution and made of Gorilla Glass. The Padfone Station has a 10.1-inch screen with 1280 by 800 pixel resolution and is also made of Corning’s Gorilla Glass.
The Padfone has an 8MP camera with LED flash and can record in 1080p HD. When plugged into the tablet/dock, this rear facing camera is also used as the rear facing camera in the tablet/laptop. Both the Padfone and tablet have their own front-facing VGA cameras.
One common question is sure to be, “Can I use my phone for voice calls when it’s plugged into the tablet/laptop?” You sure can, and that’s one of the more unique features on an already unique device.
The Padfone Station comes with a stylus. That stylus has an on/off button along with volume up/down, an earpiece and a microphone. Answer your call and/or make your call, turn the stylus on and hold it up to your head just like it’s a regular phone. Pretty darn cool, right?
Pricing and availability of the Padfone is still completely up in the air and will depend on the region and carriers. Whether or not consumers will be able to purchase only the Padfone or the Padfone and tablet combined is unknown again.
ASUS is hooking consumers up with an opportunity to seamlessly converge what are normally three separate devices. The concept is tremendous in theory and seems to work wonderfully in reality as well. It’s also great to see the ingenuity and innovation of manufacturers shining in the Android World… the ASUS Padfone and Padfone Station are a prime example of what makes Android such an amazing operating system.