Asus Eee Pad Slider Available Now For $479by Jason Inofuentes on September 20, 2011 11:44 PM EST
Originally introduced in January at CES, alongside the Transformer, Asus has quietly announced the availability of the Asus Eee Pad Slider. You'll recall, the Transformer maintained the traditional tablet form factor, while the Slider had a hardware QWERTY keyboard hidden beneath the screen, with a unique sliding mechanism that tilted the screen to a comfortable position for typing. The convertible is available now at leading e-tailers for $479 and $579 for the 16GB and 32 GB models, respectively. The $80 premium over the Transformer nets buyers both the keyboard, as well as upgraded internals. The Slider features NVIDIA's Tegra 2 refresh
, the Tegra 250 3D; this SoC bumps CPU speed to 1.2 GHz and GPU speed to 400 MHz by 30% (Ed. note: As in our LG Optimus Q2 piece, NVIDIA has let us know that the refresh has no distinct model number, and declined to confirm a GPU clockspeed, merely stating that it would be 30% more than the previous model. So, 333 MHz times 1.3 equals . . . ). Maintained is the 10.1" IPS LCD screen, microSD slot and miniHDMI port. The addition of a full size USB port will be welcomed by users disinterested in carrying an Asus proprietary docking port to USB adapter.
As productivity is the Slider's raison d'être, Polaris Office 3.0 is included on the device, along with Asus suite of cloud storage and streaming services and apps. In our review, the Transformer proved a competent Tegra 2-based Honeycomb tablet, that came alive as a productivity device when paired with the optional keyboard dock. Anand had lots of praise for the polish Asus put into making the 'Honeycomb netbook' experience appealing; far more than the Webtop experience of the Atrix. While the Slider's keyboard will not be nearly as capacious as the Transformer's dock's, the improved protability could make this the Android loving road warrior's device of choice. PR below, and we'll update when we've got our hands on the hardware.