Asus unveils Transformer Book Duet Windows/Android, tablet/laptop hybrid

Asus is launching what it calls a quad-mode PC. The Asus Transformer Book Duet TD300 is a 13.3 inch tablet that comes with a detachable keyboard dock, letting you use the system as a tablet or a notebook.

But that’s only two modes. Here’s how Asus doubles things: The system runs both Windows and Android, and you can switch between them with the press of a button.

It’s expected to launch in May with a starting price of $599.

Asus Transformer Book Duet TD300

The Asus Transformer Book Duet has the guts of a high-powered Windows notebook, but it runs Android apps as well as Windows apps, which gives you access to more than a million third party tablet apps from the Google Play Store as well thousands of apps from the Windows Store or pretty much any software designed to run on Windows.

Asus says the Transformer Book Duet, with its Intel Core i7 processor, offers performance that’s up to twice as fast as a system with an ARM-based processor.

The Duet features a 13.3 inch, IPS touchscreen display, 4GB of RAM, a 128GB solid state drive, and a microSD card slot for extra storage. It supports 802.11ac WiFi and Bluetoth 4.0. And that’s just in the tablet section.

There’s also a 1TB hard drive in the keyboard dock, as well as an Ethernet jack, one USB 3.0 and two USB 2.0 ports, and HDMI output.

The tablet measures 13.5″ x 8.5″ x 0.5″ and the keyboard dock is 13.4″ x 8.6″ x 0.6″. Combined they way about 4.2 pounds. The Duet isn’t exactly the thinnest or lightest device of its type… but it is one of the more powerful, versatile laptop/tablet hybrids announced to date.

Asus says the Transformer Book Duet TD300 will ship with Windows 8.1 and Google Android 4.1 software.

A model with an Intel Core i3 processor and 1366 x 768 pixel display ill be available this spring for around $599. A model with a 1920 x 1080 pixel display will sell for $699 and up.

  • Arrdee

    I was pretty sure the ambitious descriptions leaked earlier implied these would not be Atom-based (Bay Trail or not) devices. Might be nice to have a SKU that comes sans Windows to shave another $100 or so.

    • CyberGusa

      This is just a evolution of their Ultrabook class Transformer Book series, after the Trio this was the next step… Basically, just a portable version of their desktop All In One that also offers Android with a detachable screen.

      Sans Windows may not save a $100, though… OEMs usually get volume license deals that costs them a lot less than the retail pricing, more like around $50 and many still put on bloatware that could negate the price altogether… Sometimes, the models sold with Linux would even wind up costing more than the Windows models, as models not sold in large enough quantities get put under custom order pricing…

  • Clarknova

    Too bad there is no 11 inch version. 4.2 pounds is way too heavy for my everyday use.

  • agumonkey

    I remember lenovo attempt at doing the same a few years back. Arm SoC were too weak, Android wasn’t that sleak, Asus less experienced. This might work.

  • Jeff

    Doesn’t make sense to me. Why do this?

  • BRUCE

    I wish a longer battery life and 8GB memory