Sep 05

ASUS PadFone Combines Your Tablet And Smartphone


Okay, the name may sound silly.  But everything starts out sounding silly, anyway.  I mean, “iPod” anyone?  ASUS has officially announced the PadFone, a smartphone-cum-tablet combo that’s as novel an idea as we’d probably see among gadgets this year.
The device is made up of two components: a smartphone and a dumb tablet.  The smartphone is just like any regular Android handset that you can use on its own.  When you feel like the screen’s a tad too small for your intended activities, though, you can slip in into the tablet’s rear dock, making the tablet the I/O device while all processing is handled by the phone.


The ASUS PadFone’s smartphone component is a standard Android phone with a 4.3-inch capacitive touch display, a 5.0 megapixel camera in the rear and a low-res webcam in front.  The tablet, on the other hand, will be a 10.1-inch slate with its own webcam and connectors, but no processor, no memory, no connectivity hardware and no rear camera of its own.  Instead, it will make use of those resources on the smartphone when the latter is docked.
As of now, ASUS is only showing mock-up, non-functional samples of the PadFone.  It is an interesting concept, though — one that makes sense, as it can save you from the hassle of syncing both your tablet and smartphone with your computer.  Given that Android runs separate versions of its OS on tablets (Honeycomb) and smartphones (Gingerbread), though, we’re not sure how viable a concept it really is.
ASUS claims they have a tentative Q4 schedule for the device.