The Asus Transformer Book Chi T90 is the smallest, cheapest new member of the Asus line of 2-in-1 Windows tablets. It has an 8.9 inch display and a starting price of $299.
This model doesn’t have all the features you’ll find in larger models: there’s no HDMI output or full HD display. But it has a decent processor, a slim design, and a smaller screen than you’ll find on most 2-in-1 devices.
A smaller screen could make the T90 a better device for use in tablet mode than some of its competitors… but it could also make the system a bit more frustrating to use as a laptop.
When I got a chance to check out the new Transformer Book Chi devices the T90 wasn’t charged up so I couldn’t turn it on. But I was quite impressed with just how compact this convertible tablet is.
It measures 0.3 inches thick as a tablet or 0.65 inches as a notebook and weighs 14 ounces or about 1.7 pounds when you add the keyboard dock.
It’s the kind of tablet/notebook that you can toss in a bag and forget you’re even carrying until you open the bag to look for it.
The keyboard is a little on the small side, which might make typing uncomfortable if you have large hands. But I actually find tablets with 10 inch or larger screens to be awkward to hold for long periods, so I suspect this small, light model might be easier to use for reading eBooks, watching videos, surfing the web, or playing games for an extended period.
The tablet is powered by an Intel Atom Z3775 Bay Trail processor and supports up to 2GB of RAM, up to 64GB of storage and features 5MP rear and 2MP front cameras. It has a 1280 x 800 pixel display, and the tablet comes with a 1-year subscription to Microsoft Office 365.
Asus says the Transformer Book Chi T90 should be available in the first quarter of 2015, probably around February.
If you’re looking for something with a bigger screen, the Transformer Book Chi T100 with a 10.1 inch, full HD screen should launch around the same time for $399. And the 12.5 inch Transformer Book Chi T300 with a Core M processor should hit the streets soon for $699 and up.