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This review is from: Asus EeePad Transformer TF101 10.1 inch Tablet PC (nVidia Tegra2 1GHz, 1Gb, 16Gb eMMC, WLAN, BT, Android 3.0) with docking station and keyboard (Personal Computers)So mine arrived today ... after the delay last month. This is my first tablet so I don't have much to compare it with - however I have come from a Android phone and I much prefer Android to the Iphone - hence my decision on this tablet. This is very much a first impression view.
When I switched it on, I had 2 firmware updated to do, one for the tablet and one for the keyboard - they only took 5 minutes.
Docking the screen into the keyboard was a little scary, however after reading the manual, and found the release catch, it slotted in with a satisfying click. The keyboard itself is really very good. It was the fact it has the keyboard that prompted me to get this one, because it's just so much easier to write docs, emails etc. Once it's docked, you get added benefits too, like doubling the battery life, access to 2 standard USB ports and a standard SD card slot. You can also put a microSD into the screen part itself, so while travelling, you're not limited to taking a few movies, you literally can take a handful with you.
As I have an Android phone, after hooking it up to my wi-fi and logging in with my gmail account, all the apps I was used to, auto downloaded. In the Google Market place website, your device will appear and you can pick apps and have them sent to your tablet over the air, just as you can with the phone - however I have noticed that some apps weren't available - such as Need for Speed (which would have been cool on the big screen) but I'm sure it'll be ported soon enough. Unlike Iphone apps running on the Ipad in a small letterbox in the center of the screen, Android apps that haven't been ported for the Tablet, still look fine, because they take up the whole screen anyway and space their content our accordingly.
Web browsing is a great experience. I'm just using the stock browser at the moment, but with Flash support, sites like the BBC news site are complete with in page video etc. I noticed that you don't get redirected to the mobile site ... for example, Facebook, so you get the full site, which always annoyed me a bit on my phone.
For more work related apps, it comes with an Office variant, which seemed to open the 2 MS Word documents I tested (2003 and 2010) and they maintained all of the formatting including tables, book marks, images etc. The keyboard is nice to work with and I don't think it'll become a problem - seems sturdy enough and doesn't feel any different to a notebook keyboard.
In my role as a IT nerd, I am hoping that I can take this with me on site and hook into serial ports of servers via the USB or via bluetooth serial plugs and provision systems (with the built in telnet client) without the need to lump a full sized laptop around with me.
I haven't really used it in anger yet, but it covers everything I have wanted to do with it so far. I have had one die hard Apple fan moaning that the screen switching isn't as smooth as the ipad - but the iphone was always smoother that the Android phones. Looks like Apple have put so much effort into animation, they forgot to make it compatible with anything else. (did I mention bluetooth? :))
I don't know if there will be a 3G version, but I'm happy to use my phone as a wifi hotspot if I need the net while I'm out and about.
So, in summary - if you are considering an Ipad - then you should really think about this as a valid alternative. If you're already an Android user - this is a no brainer.
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Showing 1-10 of 40 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 2 Jun 2011 12:34:27 BDT
M. Hepworth says:
Great review. Can you say if the office software lets you edit and save MS documents, or only view them?
In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jun 2011 14:33:04 BDT
Yes, you can edit the documents, not just view. It's called Polaris Office - if you google it, you'll see some info.
It's not as full featured as MS office - of course - but it does seem to have everything I needed and it did maintain the formatting of existing Word docs. I'm sure it would suit most people who were just taking time on a train for example to work on some docs.
Posted on 2 Jun 2011 16:40:34 BDT
Mr. N. Jordan says:
Great review - I've been wondering about serial connectivity via USB - do you know whether it works yet as like you, it would make my life a lot easier not having to lump a laptop around.
BTW what's the telnet client like?
In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jun 2011 17:18:17 BDT
Haven't tried it yet. I do have a USB to serial cable - but I haven't tried it - I doubt that the drivers will be available for it. However I keep meaning to buy a bluetooth serial plug, which should do the job. If I get around to buying one, I'll let you know.
The telnet client is ok - you can change the port so its not just telnet, you can connect via ssh I believe. I may play around a bit next week.
Posted on 13 Jun 2011 13:29:00 BDT
Ms Giggles says:
can you tell me if you can write hand written notes straight onto the screen and save as that or convert to type?
Posted on 17 Jun 2011 11:36:32 BDT
J. Mckay says:
I'm waiting on mine arriving as I write. I have an ipad for work but rarely use it as it needs itunes to get media on it (you can get software to do it direct but not allowed in my work), and I want to plop movies in via SD when I feel like it. And I want to output via hdmi without more adapters...... can't wait.
Your query on 3G... probably not really important. Most folk should be aiming to do as you plan OR get a myfi device to share your connections. There's really no need or point in specific service costs per device when you can simply buy 1 myfi, 1 data plan, and use it for the family toys. I know I dont need 3G. 95%+ of my time will be within my home wifi or my office wifi. Others will be covered by Android tether OR myfi.
Posted on 6 Jul 2011 15:59:30 BDT
Robert Machin says:
Good review, thanks. I've had a few generations of Asus netbooks and really like them. Does this give you significantly more than a netbook would?
Also: dumb question: you talk about taking movies on a microSD... how do you typically get movies onto an SD in the first place?
Posted on 8 Jul 2011 09:42:50 BDT
Last edited by the author on 8 Jul 2011 09:43:19 BDT
great review Matt - I would be interested in hearing about your telnet/ssh/serial connection experiences when you look at this.
does the asus tablet have any dnla capabailites? for example I own a few androids, and the best dnla usage I've had is with Samsungs own app called allshare - this allows me to stream to and from other devices. Was wondering if Asus has its own equivalent?
In reply to an earlier post on 14 Jul 2011 12:21:18 BDT
schwer enttäuscht says: