Asus made the Padfone 2 official this morning, a device that they are selling as being “intuitive.” Just as its predecessor, the Padfone 2 is a smartphone that docks inside of a tablet shell to give you both a phone and tablet experience. While docked in the tablet, it’s still capable of making calls and using your wireless plan’s data, so for power users that aren’t interested in paying extra for a tablet data plan, this is the ultimate tech toy.
On the spec front, the Padfone 2 packs many of the same specs that you’ll find in the LG Optimus G. It sports a quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, 2GB RAM, a 4.7″ HD Super IPS+ display, LTE, 2140mAh battery, 13MP rear camera, 1.3MP front camera, and 16/32/64GB of internal storage. The tablet shell has a 10.1″ (1280×800) display, a 5000mAh battery, and a 1MP front camera.
The device will come in either black or white and will launch in Europe and Asia before the end of December.
The U.S. was not mentioned in the press release, and that should surprise no one. A device like this is anti-U.S. carrier. Allowing you to dock a phone inside a tablet and share its data plan will probably never happen with carriers like AT&T or Verizon, since they are now charging extra to have you add on a tablet to a shared data plan. There is a chance that Sprint or T-Mobile would take a shot, but knowing that they passed on the original Padfone, I’m not holding out hope.
It’s a shame really, because Asus has done a marvelous job with this device. The styling of the phone looks very high-end, the body of the phone and tablet when docked together is ultra-slim, and the weight together has been kept down to under the weight of most stand-alone tablets. Plus, they threw in LTE! Man, do I want one.
Live Life Intuitively with ASUS PadFone™ 2
Quad-core smartphone with incredible battery life and a thinner, lighter PadFone 2 Station deliver the ultimate mobile flexibility.
ASUS, a global leader in the new digital era, today announces PadFone™ 2. Building upon the successful PadFone combination of an Android smartphone and dockable tablet for incredible mobile flexibility, PadFone 2 consists of a higher specification quad-core, LTE-equipped smartphone and a completely redesigned tablet.
ASUS Chairman Jonney Shih unveiled PadFone 2 in front of the world’s media at a press conference in Milan, Italy. “Our relentless drive to innovate through our ‘Design Thinking’ philosophy has empowered us to create PadFone 2. It’s beautiful, it’s fast and, best of all, it’s intuitive,” said Mr. Shih.
PadFone 2 is a fully featured 4.7” Android™ smartphone with industry-leading specifications that docks with the unique PadFone 2 Station to become a lightweight, but fully featured, 10.1” tablet. Apps are seamlessly optimized on-the-fly to support both tablet and phone modes, with an instant transition between smartphone and tablet screen sizes.
Enlarge and charge
ASUS’ world-renowned ‘Design Thinking’ philosophy has significantly reduced PadFone 2 Station’s thickness and weight. At just 649g, the combined weight of both PadFone 2 and PadFone 2 Station is now lighter than most tablets on the market, and the dock mechanism has been redesigned to require just one swift step to use. PadFone 2 has also been subtly refined to increase its screen size to 4.7”, while reducing its thickness and weight to just 9mm at its thickest point and 135g, respectively.
Battery life is astounding, too. The higher-capacity PadFone 2 2140mAh battery provides up to 16 hours 3G talk-time and 13 hours Wi-Fi web browsing, while PadFone 2 Station’s 5000mAh battery gives up to 36 hours 3G talk-time. PadFone 2 Station’s internal battery also has enough capacity to recharge the docked PadFone 2 three times over.
Super phone, super performance
A 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 quad-core processor with 2GB of RAM ensures incredible PadFone 2 performance in both smartphone and tablet modes. The new 4.7” 1280 x 720 HD Super IPS+ display uses scratch-resistant Corning® Fit Glass and delivers sharp, detailed images with accurate colors, ultra-wide viewing angles and 550 nits brightness for stunning outdoor visibility.
A new 13-megapixel high-performance camera captures incredibly detailed images with no shutter lag. Burst mode can capture up to 100 shots at a blisteringly quick six shots per second, while simultaneously recording 1080p HD video at 30fps, or 720p HD video at 60fps. Low-light performance is also enhanced by the wide f/2.4 aperture and a dedicated image signal processor. Both PadFone 2 and PadFone 2 Station feature superlative sound quality too, thanks to ASUS SonicMaster technology and audio tuning by Waves, recipient of a Technical GRAMMY Award®.
Easy to share, easy to save
With capacities up to 64GB and 50GB of ASUS WebStorage provided free for two years, PadFone 2 offers endless possibilities for storing data. Data syncing between devices is also a thing of the past, since PadFone 2 storage is used by PadFone 2 Station when the two are connected, while NFC allows users to share webpages, Contacts and user recommendations from Play Store with others. Shared mobile data connectivity between smartphone and tablet also means just one data plan is needed for both devices, while support for up to 42Mbit/s DC-HSPA+ and 100Mbit/s LTE delivers super-fast web browsing and downloads.
PadFone 2 also features a new version of the SuperNote app that instantly converts handwritten notes made in multiple languages into editable text. Its Instant Translation tool also translates any word, phrase or sentence in an email, web page or app at a touch, without the need for a third-party translation tool.
PadFone 2 will be launched before the end of December in Europe (Bulgaria, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, and Sweden) and Asia (Hong Kong, India, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and U.A.E). Availability in other countries will be announced at a later date.