ASUS Transformer Prime Review -
Hardware - Generic
What a fantastic screen the Prime has, really... really good. The Transformer Prime tablet has a 10.1-inch 1280 x 800 pixel Super IPS + LCD capacitive touch screen display with Corning's Gorilla glass. The clarity and quality of this little screen is brilliant. You can configure it in several modes including an IPS+ mode for outdoor use (sunny activity).
What does that mean, IPS+? Simply put, it's really, really bright which helps you outside in sunny environments. Super IPS+ mode can be enabled from the pop-up settings menu. The brightness is great, the dark black levels the best we have seen on a tablet to date. The viewing angle of the screen is good as well, IPS screens are known for it.
We already mentioned the display resolution, it is a nice standard 10.1 inches, which is good best for watching movies and content. Thanks to the Tegra 3 processor, that means you can watch 720p HD video, even 1080P on an external HDMI display.
I do have to note that once this product became available two weeks ago, ASUS had already announced an updated model that supersedes the Prime with a 1080p HD display, which would become a WUXGA full HD 1920x1080 resolution screen.
The input features in the Transformer Prime are accelerometer sensor for UI auto-rotate, ASUS Waveshare UI, multi-touch input method, touch-sensitive controls with rotating icons, G-Sensor, Light Sensor, Gyroscope, E-compass and GPS.
The memory found in the ASUS tablet is 1GB RAM and 32 GB or optional 64 GB storage capacity with a microSD card slot giving an extra 32GB support.
The initial launch of the ASUS tablet featured the Android OS 3.2 (Honeycomb) with a layer of the latest Waveshare UI.
Obviously the ASUS tablet can be upgraded to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and run it natively. I think last week ICS started propagating. Our sample already has ICS installed.
The ASUS tablet has Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 2.1 version with EDR, and USB 2.0 version. Much has been said and written about WIFI issues with the Prime. We had none. Now we do have to say that it was suggested that some of the WIFI issues would be solved with Andoid ICS, which this device has installed.
We assume that everybody will upgrade to ICS, and as such we can only say that WIFI was incredibly fast and the range very very good. Also, setting up the WIFI link after shutdown or recovering from sleep mode takes merely 2-3 seconds. So I have no significant enough problems to report really.
The camera in the ASUS Prime tablet is an 8 megapixel 3264x2448 pixels with LED flash and autofocus features and hey now wait a minute... a secondary 1.2 megapixel camera for video calling has been embedded as well. Transformer Prime offers 1080p video playback capability.
Truthfully, for a tablet it is one of the best tablet cameras I've seen thus far. And while I don't see the point of taking photos or video with a 10-inch tablet (it just looks silly in public!), the Transformer Prime's camera is still quite good if you need to use it. It shoots photos at 8 MP and records 1080p HD video as well. Oh and that's Tommy by the way.
We have to mention the speaker. Overall quality is good, decent sound with good volume levels, definitely loud enough. It's just one speaker though and we would have liked to see two for stereo output. The prime is a multimedia device, and watching music clips through YouTube, that's where I'd have preferred the two speakers.
When it comes to battery life, the Eee Pad Transformer Prime pad (with dock) has a 22Wh Li-polymer Battery which is expected to give 12 to 18 hours of battery life on video playback.
Now, you'd expect a quad-core processor to really consume power. But it doesn't, it's where that 5th core kicks in really. Asus's official spec sheet says you can expect up to 12 hours of battery life with the tablet alone and up to 18 hours when connected to the dock (the dock has its own battery). Now you prolly will never reach such figures, we'll test that later on in the article really.
Ever since the first Android tablets arrived a year or two ago things have been developing fast. ODMs and chip designers jumped onto the bandwagon fast as PC sales are declining, and much like the initial netbook market, the tablet market is on the rise. We test the The quad-core Tegra 3 based Eee Pad Transformer Prime, an unbelievable product. Fast, thin and huge in specs, but sure... very expensive.