Asus T100 Transformer – a tablet or a laptop?
That’s what I would like to try to answer by the end of this post. I have been sent a fabulous new Asus T100 Transformer and I have been using it for a month now.
This tablet has an Intel Atom 1.33 Ghz quad core processor, 2 Gb memory and 32 Gb of flash storage. However, one of the top headliners of the spec sheet is the fact that it has the full fat version of Windows 8.1 and not the more restricted Windows RT 8.1. The big boon with this version over the RT is that you can install desktop apps/programs as with previous versions of Windows whereas the RT version only allows installs directly from the app store.
Unpacking the box, I was impressed with the build quality of the tablet. It is a nice size and weight for general use and portability. One of the USPs with this tablet is the included keyboard that clips on to the tablet which ‘transforms’ the tablet into a laptop and also folds over to protect the screen of the tablet when not in use.
I must admit I was sceptical about the keyboard, thinking that perhaps it would just lay there unused as with a previous Android tablet I had with included keyboard, but I was happy to be proved wrong with this. The keyboard and the trackpad is responsive and once I got used to the slightly cramped keyboard, I found myself typing paragraphs with ease.
It didn’t take long to get used to the look and feel of this new version of Windows either. This was my first time using Windows 8 and above which includes Windows Tiles. For those of you who are unfamiliar with these, these are like apps or widgets but they are live so you get live news, Facebook, Twitter updates etc. simply by being on your homescreen.
The battery life is good, with a reported duration of up to 11 hours. There is a front-facing camera for Skype or other web cam apps, but no rear-facing camera.
As far as competitors go, there are a few out there, not least the Microsoft Surface which comes with many spec levels. However, for the same specs, I don’t think you can beat the Asus at this price when looking at the rrps. Did I mention it comes with Microsoft Office?!
After using it for over a month now, I have to say I have been using it like a laptop more than a tablet. The keyboard is a pleasure to use and makes for easier typing. The sheer size of the device means it’s ultraportable and powerful enough to edit Word and Excel documents as well as watch video, surf the web and play games from the growing Windows App Store.
Disclosure: We have received a sample to do an honest review.