The Asus Eee Pad Transformer hasn’t hit stores in the US yet, but it’s on sale in the UK and the folks at Engadget have posted one of the first in-depth reviews of the British version of the new tablet. The Eee Pad Transformer is a 10 inch slate that runs Google Android 3.0 Honeycomb. But there’s also an optional keyboard dock which allows you to use the tablet like a laptop.

Engadget reports that the hardware buttons are well laid out, but the tablet is wider than a Motorola XOOM or Apple iPad 2, which isn’t a problem when you’re using the device as a laptop, but as far as tablets go it’s a bit on bulky side — although it’s no thicker than a Motorola XOOM and it’s actually a bit lighter.

The keyboard looks great, and the reviewer says it feels just as good — when it works. But Engadget says that there were multiple times when the tablet simply didn’t recognize the dock. The tablet is also apparently a bit iffy when it comes to recognizing SD cards or USB flash drives.

You can find more details about the camera, software, and overall user experience at Engadget. Long story short? It’s probably the best Android tablet around… but the software is still pretty rough around the edges at the moment. Hopefully there’s nothing wrong with the Transformer that can’t be fixed by software updates though.


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5 replies on “Asus Eee Pad Transformer reviewed”

  1. Also, here is an another video where they don’t complain of any lag (comparsion between ipad2 & xoom): part 1 comparision: ….. part 2 comparision: ….. I find this comparision interesting … though the reviewer is always little biased towards ipad & iphone in general, the review was acceptable except for the end statement. Honestly XOOM is a better tablet but ipad2 is winner

  2. Funny really. Like reading the comments on any thread over at engadget. It’s simple really. This is a tablet, it’s software makes it less usable in that function at the moment. The iPad 2 works pretty flawlessly at what it is designed to do. I’ve had 3 android tablets now running android 1.6, 2.1 and 2.2 (I really want one that is good!) and these new honeycomb ones are seemingly still not quite there yet.

    If I translated the review numbers into users I would imagine out of 100 users of each then about 70% of Asus transformer customers would be happy with it as opposed to probably about 90% of iPad 2 users. It’s not about fanboyism, it’s just about current user experience. Therefore justifying the 7/10 and 9/10 scores. Specs on this sort of device are really pointless, the galaxy tab is supposed to be running the same CPU as the original iPad, however the actual performance is worlds apart (in fact all my colleagues who bought the galaxy tab have sold them now and most replaced them with iPads).

  3. @aftermath
    Great comment, summarizes all non-technical and non subjective reviews we see these days to quench and bash at any new product coming to the market that may compete with a ‘preferred’ product made by Apple – the iOS for idiOtS!

  4. Seems like most engadget reviewers have problems with all devices that aren’t Apple. . . invariably they always can’t get something to work or don’t understand something and a commenter points out how to do it correctly. Maybe that’s why they are so pro-apple over there are engadget, cause their just too stupid to figure anything out other than dumped down tech.

    1. I agree. For my money, anybody, and I don’t care who you are or who you think you are, that takes an article or comment over at Engadget seriously has ZERO credibility as a technology enthusiast or even as a consumer

      Every product has good stuff, and every product has bad stuff. However, it’s not just that simple. Some of the good stuff, like having 20 hour battery life, is just a good instance of an important trait (in this case, battery life). Similarly, some of the bad stuff, like having 2 hour battery life, is just a bad instance of an important trait (in this case, battery life). This is where most consumers tends to dwell in their thoughts. They take traits like processor speed, battery life, and storage and then compare devices based on faster/slower, longer/shorter, and more/less. However, it’s just not that simple. Other traits don’t fall along a continuum like this. They’re binary, and the presence or absence of this trait makes the device absolutely tolerable or intolerable. They are either essential or deal breakers depending on if it’s there or missing. For example, for some people the presence of a feature like bluetooth, capacitive touch, or a backlit keyboard is essential. For these people, it doesn’t matter how good or bad the rest of the device is. If it’s missing these essential pieces then it’s still a bad device to them, and if it includes them then it’s still a good device. Similarly, for some people the absence of a feature like a user replaceable battery, open source driver support, or an HD resolution display is intolerable. For these people, it doesn’t matter how good or bad the rest of the device is. If it excludes these essential pieces then it’s still a bad device to them, and if it includes them then it’s a good device. Yes, there are many people out there that will gladly buy a slower device with shorter battery life (notice that these are both examples of the first kind of trait) if it means that they get an HD display in return or the ability to buy and install batteries themselves (notice that these are both examples of the second kind of trait), and yes, there are many people out there that will avoid faster devices with better battery life just because they don’t have a backlit keyboard or capacitive touch screens. It’s their preference.

      This is the problem with Engadget. They have one usage scenario that is “right”, and it’s their usage scenario. Unfortunately, this usage scenario is little more than a promotion of an agenda, and I won’t dispute that it is intentionally pro-Apple. Unfortunately, this all conspires to make the folks over at Engadget make foolish, sweeping comments (I do it too, but I have no audience and therefore minor responsibilities). For example, the thinness that many devices with non-user replaceable batteries have is impressive, and Engadget is quick to give any device a body-image complex by calling it “chunky” if it’s not among the thinnest devices out there. Still, this thinness comes at the expense of a user replaceable battery, and you’ll never see Engadget throw a device under the bus for such an anti-consumer feature. The irony of this is that whereas the degree to which a device is thin is an example of the first kind of trait (and therefore merely influences the extent to which the device is desirable) the user replaceable battery is an example of the second type of trait (and therefore dictates whether a device is even acceptable in the first place). The subtlety of all of this is out the window over at Engadget, and the sad thing is that most businesses DELIBERATELY ship products with traits that are going to decrease the desirability of devices or make them outright unacceptable to some consumers. In the best case scenario, these are simply practical design choices, and in the worst cast scenario these are devious business decisions. Can you guess which Apple tends towards? No company can satisfy all consumers, and no company can make a perfect product. As a client of mine once said, “Even the perfect product has an imperfect price.” Don’t get me wrong, Engadget is responsible to nobody but themselves, and if you look at the names of the people who pay the bills over there then you’ll probably find that not a dime comes from their readership. So, of course Engadget isn’t going to take a responsible or even approach in their coverage. Why would they? Until people start making sense and turning their backs on Engadget, Engadget have all of the evidence in the world to convince them of their faultlessness.

      This is why I like the way that Brad covers devices. He makes it pretty clear where each falls on the scale of all of the variable traits and what features are absolutely present or absent as well. Even though I think Brad often misses the opportunity to really interpret the impact of this as much as he could, especially with the recent influx of Android devices and “tablets”, he’s still better than most out there and miles ahead of what your can expect from Engadget. As I’ve told Brad on a number of occasions, I genuinely believe that anybody can read one of his reviews and know exactly what to expect out of a device. Relatively few people will be disappointed with a decision to make or skip a purchase based on one of his reviews, and that’s rare praise for somebody in his position. In contrast, I think a lot of people blindly follow the cargo cult of Engadget and don’t even realize what they’ve gotten themselves when they decide to skip or buy something. Then again, when you’re just imitating somebody who themselves has no idea what they’re doing, it’s not a big surprise when it turns out that you don’t know what you’re doing either. Thus, you can expect insightful comments over there like “WANT” and “Call me when this thing has a capacitive multitouch display” and “Five hours of battery life??? LULULULU”. Yup, the future of technology for consumers is in great hands.

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