The Asus Transformer Book T100 is a small, cheap Windows tablet that you can use like a notebook thanks to a keyboard dock. At first glance it looks a lot like an old-school netbook. But you can remove the screen and use the Transformer Book T100 as a touchscreen tablet with up to 11 hours of battery life.
Not bad for a device that will sell for just $349.
I got a chance to spend a few minutes with the Transformer Book T100 recently, and while it’s not going to replace a high-end ultrabook, this little guy seems like it could be a winner in the affordable portable space.
The Transformer Book T100 features a 1.33 GHz Intel Atom Z3740 quad-core Bay Trail processor, a 10.1 inch, 1366 x 768 pixel display, 2GB of RAM, 32GB to 64GB of storage, and a 1.2MP camera.
It runs Windows 8.1 and comes with a free copy of Microsoft Office 2013 Home & Student.
The tablet alone is 0.4 inches thick and weighs 1.2 pounds. Add the tablet dock, and it weighs 2.4 pounds and measures a little over 0.9 inches thick.
There’s a micro USB port, micro HDMI port, and microSD card slot on the tablet, and a full-sized USB port in the keyboard dock.
As you might expect from a cheap tablet, the case is made of plastic, not metal. And as you might expect from a keyboard for a 10 inch device, the keys and touchpad are a bit small, and could take some getting used to. But the travel on the keys feels pretty good, and unless you have enormous hands, you should be able to get up to speed pretty quickly.
The keyboard and tablet lock together very firmly, making it feel more like a laptop than a tablet with an accessory. But it’s a laptop with a screen that doesn’t open very wide. You can adjust the angle a bit… but you can’t push it back very far.
With an Intel Bay Trail processor, the Transformer Book T100 should be at least twice as fast as a typical netbook (or a tablet with an Intel Atom Z2760 Clover Trail or earlier Atom chip), and felt pretty responsive in the brief time I spent with the tablet. I’m looking forward to getting my hands on a review unit to see how it performs under real-world conditions.
Update: Asus has posted an official product video for the Transformer Book T100: