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.
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.