Before you start imagining a Transformers film where they’re all toys trying to get back to their owners ala Toy Story, know that the headline refers to Asus’ line of tablets. The newest tablet, called the Transformer Pad Infinity, is the latest tablet in Asus’ line of tablet/laptop hybrids that can snap into a keyboard (sold separately for $149) and become a fully functioning laptop while retaining the form factor of a tablet.
The Infinity will be launching sometime during the week of July 16. The tablet itself will cost $499 for the 32GB model and $599 for the 64GB model. Nobody said mobile computing was cheap and the Transformer Pad Infinity proves that. The good news is that owners of previous Transformers can save some money as the Infinity is backwards compatible with previous Transformer keyboard docks.
As for the specs, the new Infinity is the closest Android tablet to catch up to the iPad’s ridiculous retina display resolution with a 10.1 inch display at 1900×1200. It’s still powered by Nvidia’s Tegra 3 processor which probably helped keep the price lower than it could have been. It also uses the same ol’ 1GB of RAM, but that should be more than enough for any applications that one could possibly use a tablet for.
As for Android versions, the Infinity will launch with Ice Cream Sandwich. Asus’ other tablet, the Google Nexus 7, is expected to be the first to have Jelly Bean when it’s announced this week during Google I/O. Considering that Google and Asus are pretty chummy at this point, I wouldn’t be surprised if they gave the Infinity Jelly Bean before the others.
While Asus is launching the Wi-Fi version of the Infinity in July, the manufacturer is also prepping an LTE version of the same tablet. The only difference is that the LTE version will use a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Dual-core processor. It will be out at a later date.
We’ve known about the Transformer Pad Infinity since CES, but the announcement of Microsoft’s Surface definitely changed the playing field for laptop/tablet hybrids. The Transformer Prime was pretty much in a league of its own so it will be interesting to see how Asus responds to the Surface.[h/t: The Verge]