At first glance the Asus Transformer AiO looks a lot like other all-in-one desktop PCs we’ve seen in recent years. It’s a computer built into an 18 inch touchscreen monitor which takes up less space on your desk than a traditional PC + monitor setup.
What makes it special is the screen is actually an enormous tablet hanging out in a PC docking station. You can pick up the 18 inch screen and use it as a tablet. It should be available in North America for $1299 and up starting in the second quarter of 2013.
The PC Station features an Intel Ivy Bridge processor, NVIDIA GeForce GT 730M graphics, 4 USB 3.0 ports, 1 USB 2.0 port, and an HDMI output. When the tablet is docked, you can use it as a 1080p display for running Windows 8.
It has 8GB of RAM, a 1TB hard drive, and a DVD burner. The PC Station weighs about 9 pounds.
The tablet features an NVIDIA Tegra 3 quad-core processor, a 1920 x 1080 pixel, 10-point multitouch IPS display, and Android 4.1. It has 2GB of RAM, 32GB of storage, a microSD card slot, Bluetooth, and WiFi.
The tablet measures 18.3″ x 11.6″ x 0.7″ and weighs about 5 pounds — making it more of a use-around-the-house kind of device than a carry-with-you tablet. The only tablets I’ve seen that come close to this size are the Sony Vaio Tap20 and Panasonic’s 20 inch, 4K tablet prototype.
If you want to run Windows 8 apps in tablet mode, you can kind of do that — the Transfomer AiO has a remote desktop solution that lets you basically login to the PC base station over a remote network so you can interact with software on the desktop PC while using the tablet.
Asus says you the tablet should get up to 5 hours of run time from the built-in 38Whr battery, and features a carrying handle and a kickstand so you can prop it up on its own even without the base station around. You can switch from Windows 8 to Android and back again with the press of a button.