Asus plans to launch 10 inch Transformer Book, Chromebook in 2013

Asus CEO Jerry Shen is providing a peek at the company’s roadmap, and it looks like there’s plenty of room for low-cost notebooks. Speaking to investors, Shen said Asus plans to launch a new Transformer Book with a 10 inch display and a price tag of $399 or less in the second half of 2013.

Asus is also working on its first Chromebook, and plans to launch a laptop running Google’s Chrome OS in the second half of the year.

Asus Transformer Book 13

Asus Transformer Book 13

The Taiwanese company made a name for itself a few years ago with the popular Eee PC line of netbooks. But as netbooks have waned in popularity, Asus has largely shifted its attention to tablets, ultrabooks, and other computers with higher-price tags.

But while that space offers higher profit margins, the marketplace is also pretty crowded. So it’s not surprising to see that Asus is considering launching new low-cost products.

In fact, Asus has already started doing that. The Asus VivoBook X202E is one of the cheapest Windows 8 notebooks available with an 11.6 inch, touchscreen display. While it has a list price of around $500, you can often find it on sale for as low as $399.

And the Asus 1015E is a 10 inch laptop with an Intel Celeron 847 dual core processor that sells for as little as $249. That makes it cheaper than many old-school netbooks, but this mini-laptop has a processor that’s much more powerful than any Intel Atom chip.

The upcoming Asus Transformer Book 10 inch computer would be about the same size as the 1015E, but it would have a removable touchscreen display that you could use as a tablet.

Asus already offers a 13 inch Transformer Book in some countries, but that model has a powerful Intel Core i7 processor, a high-resolution display, and a price tag close to $1500.  It’s likely the 10 inch model will have more modest specs in order to allow Asus to sell the device for between $299 and $399.

As for the upcoming Asus Chromebook, it sounds like Asus plans to target education and government markets rather than consumers. That’s similar to the approach Lenovo and HP have taken with their Chrome OS laptops.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sam-Curcio/100001739982933 Sam Curcio

    Another 10″ Windows tablet? Please, don’t be an Atom. I have sent back every Atom tablet I bought due to performance issues. Where are the i3′s?

    • toronado455

      i3 makes too much heat for this form factor.

      • CyberGusa

        Only too much for a thin and light design, like the 10.6″ Surface Pro it’ll have to be thicker and be inventive with the active cooling…

        While, unless it’s a Haswell then run times will still be a problem…

    • http://soltesza.wordpress.com/ sola

      For a 300-ish price range, you will have to get Atom.

      • CyberGusa

        No, Celeron and Pentium based products are already in that range…

        The 10″ Asus 1015E for example is $299 and runs on Celeron 847 1.1GHz… B&H even has a sale on it that reduces the price to $249 until the end of June… Hybrid design would cost more but should still be possible to keep it below $400 without resorting to ATOM SoC… best to wait for Bay Trail before they consider that anyway…

    • DemetriusJones

      It’s supposed to have an i7, and rumored to have an i5 Model. Their own website says i7 (http://www.asus.com/vivo/en/transformerBook.htm)

      • http://www.liliputing.com/ Brad Linder

        That website also says 13 inch display — it’s the same page that’s been up for months talking about the larger Transformer Book which Asus started showing off last year.

    • CyberGusa

      The Transformer book series is suppose to be the Hybrid Tablet version of their Zenbooks/Ultrabooks… So it’s more likely they’ll be basing the lower cost version on Celeron or Pentium series… though a AMD version may be possible as well now that AMD is shipping their 28nm APUs and they’re definitely cheaper to use than any Core i-Series product.

      The ATOM is improving soon though, the upcoming Bay Trail stands to more than double the performance range that ATOM offers. So, products coming out end of this year and through next year should be notably better than any ATOM system you ever used before.

      Mind, it’s usually considered good when a new product improves on the old a mere 10-15% but Bay Trail stands to improve by over 50% as it’s the first major update to the ATOM since they first introduced it and they’re starting to leverage technology originally developed for Ivy Bridge to it!

  • toronado455

    “The Chinese company made a name for itself a few years ago with the popular Eee PC line of netbooks.”

    True, but weren’t they already a well-known name in the desktop logicboard space?

  • http://www.facebook.com/sam.lehnert.7 Sam Lehnert

    Hey, I hate to be the guy, but Asus is a Taiwanese company. Let’s not start adhering to mainland China’s preferred view of the world just yet.

  • cantwait

    oh man.if the 10″ has similar features of the 13″, this is going to be a long awaited dream come true.