Pros Sleek, elegant design, small, fast five core processor, packed with Android goodness, excellent keyboard dock, dock can charge the prime or even other usb devices. good wifi in strong to medium wifi hot spots. Excellent bundled apps.
Cons If you use the dock you are going to loose the rubber/plastic grommets covering the small slots that go into the dock. GPS not very strong.
Summary The device itself is utterly beautiful, a far cry from it's predecessor. The original Transformer, despite being popular and incredibly useful, was a bit of an ugly duckling being heavy and a little on the fat side. However, with the Prime, Asus appear to have truly found it's feet with design. Measuring and weighing in as thinner and lighter than tablet design benchmark, iPad 2, the prime sports a combination of spun aluminium and high quality polymer materials, giving a sturdy build and inspiring looks. The Prime comes in two colours, a dark grey with a hint of purple and a silver with a hint of gold (which Asus appropriately calls the "champagne" colour). If you admired the build quality, weight and thinness of the iPad 2, then you're going to be gobsmacked by this; the first ten minutes of my time with the Prime was spent literally caressing it, I almost licked it. If I had done that with a living being, I'd have probably been arrested. The ring spun aluminium finish on the back, when it has light shone on it, gives a beautiful array of concentric circles as they reflect off the brushed finish. the Asus logo in solid Aluminium dominates the center of the back of the tablet, but tastefully. Directly above the Asus logo, towards the center-top of the back is the 8MP camera with single LED flash. The camera has a 2.4 aperture, a significant upgrade from the usual 2.2 apertures seen on consumer devices. This will lead to a high quality camera experience (which is somewhat lost on a tablet).
On the front side of the tablet, you are greeted by a beautiful, sturdy slab of Corning's Gorilla Glass. Not only this, but Asus have followed suit with Apple by using a hydro-oleophobic coating on the glass so that fingerprints and smudges are somewhat mitigated (though not fully). Aside from the screen itself, the front side only sees the Asus logo used once again in the top left section of the bezel. Also housed in the bezel is the 2MP front facing camera which is situated just right of center-top and the photometer for adjusting screen brightness. Physical connectors and buttons are fairly par for the course for a high end tablet such as this. The left section of the top edge holds the power button, the upper section of the right edge holds the 3.5mm audio jack. The left holds the following in top-to-bottom order, volume rocker, micro-HDMI port, Micro-SD card slot and microphone. The center of the bottom edge houses the 40-pin proprietary connector Asus uses to connect the tablet to the dock. It is also the connection used to hook it up to your PC, so this is somewhat bittersweet but is forgiven when considering the kind of functionality it brings in the form of the dock.
On the inside the Prime sports some beefy specs. First up and most notably, the Prime is one of the first tablets in the world to hold Nvidia's brand new Tegra 3 quad core processor. Sporting 4 ARM Cortex A9 cores clocked at 1.3GHz and a fifth, ultra power efficient, "companion" core clocked to a maximum of 500MHz, the Prime isn't lacking in processing grunt. Now, now, I hear you all clamouring in unison, "but what about battery drain?!1'. Fear not, children, as the Tegra 3 actually, according to Nvidia, has less power drain than the Tegra 2. This works through the companion core with it's ultra efficient architecture keeping the tablet ticking over with menial tasks, with the four big boys only turning on when some serious work needs to be done. This combination makes power efficiency shoot through the roof compared to Tegra 2 who only had it's two equally clocked 1GHz cores to provide processing power which would have been less power efficient. Paired to these beastly cores is a 12 CUDA core (or 48 stream processor) GeForce ULP GPU. Nvidia has its expertise firmly set in graphics and 3D rendering with it's successful consumer and enterprise graphics solution business. This translates over to developers wishing to make games or other 3D applications utilising some of Nvidia's special API's like Physx for greate realism in games, or CUDA for more efficient floating point calculation. So these two major processing centers are paired to 1GB LPDDR2 RAM which gives ample memory for apps to play with.
The Prime also comes with the usual gamut of radios like Wifi b, g a & n, A-GSPS and Bluetooth 3.0. 3G is not included in the Prime and there is not a 3G model. So if you were absolutely banking on your tablet having 3G then this isn't for you, lest you use your Android smart phone as a wireless hub for the Prime to utilise you phone's 3G connection (something available on all Android phones from 2.2 onwards). The screen is a 1280 x 800 Super-IPS display. I'm not sure what the "Super" in Super-IPS actually means or does; but it seems that these screen manufacturers like to put an endless amount of prefix names to denote a new iteration (see also Samsung's Super-AMOLED display). Like the iPad 2, this display of the Prime's is a full RGB array, which means absolutely nothing. This endless tussle between full array and PenTile is ridiculous as 99% of users don't tell the difference and that 1% are usually tech-nerds who deliberately look for the difference just to rant about it on XDA or somewhere else. In short, the display is beautiful. Bright and vibrant, viewing angles are excellent and outdoor reading in sunlight is actually do-able to a nice degree. All this beautiful tech wet-dreamery is powered by a 22Wh battery that gives the Prime, on a full load torture test, 10 hours 17 minutes battery time (according to Engadget). The battery in the dock extends that to (what Asus claim to be) 16 and a half hours. So, with moderate use, you don't need to worry about running out of juice throughout the day.
The keyboard dock is as beautiful as the tablet itself, being incredibly thin and light. It has the same colour as the tablet, so you are perfectly colour co-ordinated. Dominating the top of the dock is the keyboard itself. Black chiclet keys were Asus' choice and they were a good once, giving a demure and understated look. Asus have made a number of changes to what you'd be used to on a standard PC keyboard, replacing the top Function keys with shortcuts to many things like turning Wifi on or off, adjusting screen brightness, accessing the browser app, skipping or pausing music etc. There is a button for "Home" where the Windows or Apple key would be and left Alt is replaced by a Search key which takes you straight to Google's integrated search functionality in Android. Overall, the layout and innovative alterations seen on the keyboard are fantastic, the only gripe is that the layout is a little compact (but what do you expect on a 10' form factor) and that the keys themselves have shallow press distances, so initially you're not overly confident when pressing keys but it is something that mitigates itself over time. The trackpad, while small, is very nice. It supports multi-touch gestures (two-finger movement will enact a scrolling action in whatever you're doing) and is accurate. Integrated into the track pad are both left and right clicks. Left click sends a touch instruction over the thing you have the cursor over and right click opens the context menu for that item that will often be brought up when touch-and-holding.
The left side of the dock holds another 40-pin connector, the same one on the bottom of the tablet, that can be used to connect the dock to the charger or a PC. Note that charging the dock while the tablet is connected to it will also charge the tablet in a one-two fashion. The front side of the dock tapers into a very thin front finish reminiscent of ultra books. The right side of the dock holds a full size SD card slot that can take up to 32GB and a full size USB port that can be used to connect to a phone or other device. The connection onto the tablet itself is very secure. It takes some force to clip the Prime onto the dock, there are two spring loaded clips that load into little slots found on either side of the 40-pin connector on the tablet. The connector slides into place and you will hear both clips click into place. The Prime will make a little "bing" noise to let you know it is connected, and the black status bar at the bottom of the screen will bring up a little icon to let you know it is connected. To disconnect, there is a little spring-loaded latch toward the back of the dock which dis-engages the two clips and allows you to pull the tablet off the dock. Some force is required to do this, which is only a testament to how well Asus have engineered the tablet to stay sturdy on the dock. When connected, the cradle section of the dock that holds the prime creates a natural lift at the back end of the dock. This tilts the keyboard and screen ever-so-slightly towards you, which helps with ergonomics. Asus have seriously done their homework with the design of this. Capping things off are four rubberised feet at the bottom of the dock to keep it gripped on whatever surface you put it on.
Overall, the Prime looks and feels the part. It performs lightning quick, the quad core Tegra 3 providing ample grunt to sweep through any and all that gets thrown at it. Physically, you're not going to be embarrassed by being seen with this, it's something you're definitely going to want to show off. The keyboard, while providing some gripes regarding the keys and its compact nature, allows you to really step up the work you can get done if you need to do an extended typing session. ICS on tablets is just as it is on phones, but for the bigger screen (so it's lovely, in short). If you want a bottom line about the Prime, it's this: the Prime is the best Android tablet out now, and is probably the best tablet out now, depending on your perspective.
P.S. If you're will buy this ASUS Transformer Prime, I suggest you have to compare for best prices before you decide at: Prices-comparison.info/Transformer-Prime/
Thank for reading!
Pros quad-core Nvidia Tegra 3 processor,8-megapixel camera same as Iphone 4s and has smooth and clear 1080p video,microSD and Micro-HDMI ,Thinner and lighter then the Ipad 2
Cons none as of now
Summary Very bad review by Eric "my next kid will be named Steve Jobs" Franklin there is no way this should have been rated lower then the Ipad 2 at least even. CNET keeps taking down the reviews of people that are upset with Eric's review its about 35 to date that they have pulled down. Eric gave the Galaxy 10.1 a rating of 8.0-6.0-8.0 the Ipad 2 9.0-8.0-8.0 and the prime 8.0-8.0-8.0 the prime blows away the galaxy 10.1 Donald Bell should have reviewed the Prime. Lets see if CNET as the guts to Prizefight the Ipad 2 vs Prime. I bet it will be a tie.......CNET Cause Nobody Equals The apple. I'm sure they will take me down again for the 4th time.
"Owner's review"on by KenHayashi
Pros Aesthetics and design
Cons HC is not optimized for quad core, hopefully ICS eill be
Summary I think I may be one of the first actual owner of this tablet. I am currently visiting Taiwan, and per-order for the device started way before than in the States, and actual delivery started on the 3rd. I took delivery of my Prime at 2pm. I preorder mine through TKec here in Taiwan. Taiwan is home to Asus, after all, and it seems Asus really takes care of its fans in its home base.
I have several tablets currently, both iOS and Androids, and have had more. Of course, this is only my personal opinion of the device, and you should take it with a grain of salt as with any other reviews. I am not associated with Asus nor cnet.
Ok, first thing first: I am reviewing this for those that are tablets pros, those who have had several tablets of all competing platforms, and who are wondering what Prime is bringing to the table. Looks elsewhere if you do not already have several tablets of made by Apple, HTC, or HP, etc.
I think I am not out of line when I say that I believe of all platforms out there iOS is the most mature, androids has the most potential and others are just also ran. With that being said, I have to say I am disappointed with just playing HC on my Prime instead of ICS. All the little annoyances of HC are still there, even the bad optimization. Home screen switching is very smooth, and so are apps launching. But every so often, there will be stuttering performing either tasks, just like what HC has always done. I am beginning to believe that all those performance issues really are Google's bad coding, as the hardware of this tablet is not in question. It's is a freaking quad-core! Until ICS ships, I believe, do not think that all the stuttering will be gone. Compare to iOS, sadly, iPad 2 still wins in the consistent smooth operation for now. ICS may very well change that quickly.
Aesthetically, this thing is the best looking tablet there is, bar non. Yes, it is prettier even than the iPad 2. It is thinner as you probably know, but what really strikes me is how solid the tablet feels. The flexing problem or the previous transformer are gone. This thing feels like a solid forged piece of metal when you hold it in your hand, and it exudes expensive and sophistication with aplomb. Design cue pays more than a nod to its Apple competitor, but that is not necessary a bad thing. It is different enough that no one will confuse the two, so on the aesthetic side this thing is the best looking Androids tablet there is. Compare to iPad 2, it is on par with the Apple on looks alone. Prime does feel more "expensive" than even the iPad, so combined with that aspect then it trounces even the Apple offering.
I bought my champaign gold Prime with the dock, so I'll go over a little bit about operation with the dock attached. The dock feels very much like the tablet: thin, light and high class. The keyboard layout is the same as the first gen dock, so if you're already comfortable with that, you'll be at home here. Two cons about the docks are that it is not backlit, and it is not as solid as the tablet itself. Don't get me wrong, it's not that the dock is of low quality, but compared to the tablet it does feel lower. An analogy would be like if you have been driving your Ferrari all day, stepping into your Mercedes S class feels like a let down. To match the quality of the Prime, I would've loved for the dock to be backlit, and the chicklet keys bigger. Maybe even for the keyboard to be thinner,I don't know. All I know is that I was blown away by the tablet. The keyboard, not so much. The top heavy comments made by several reviewers do ring true, Prime does tip over very easily. Be careful.
I have not had my Prime for that long to give a full review. Once I do, then I'll update my findings.
Pros Vastly better in every key regard than the iPad. Amazing display, camera,video, smooooooooth operation, form and function. Apps are now plentiful and great.
Cons Yes, with the keyboard it seems a little top-heavy, though not really a problem.
Summary A truly great product that fulills much of what the iPad supposedly promised...and, best of all, its an open platform free of the goofy limitations and insane restrictions that Apple inflicts on its users.
Pros - Nice Design, Built Solid
- Great display
- Usable Apps Included
- Works well as an entertainment power house or for the
professional who like to travel light but still be productive.
Cons 1. Stock Browser performance but that will be fixed with android 4.0
or installing another android browser from the market.
2. Not comfortable to hold and use with stock keyboard, download the
app thumb keyboard.
Summary I am going to keep my review as short as possible. First off, my tablet works flawlessly. I did have my concerns like some of you who have done your research about wifi performance, gps and light bleed. Off the bat, my wifi performance was good but not consistent. I used wifi analyzer to check my signal with comparison to my current android phone, the HTC EVO 3D. Both showed the same signal strength but I noticed the inconsistency with various download speeds that ranged from 8 to 20MPS. This was from about 15-20 feet away from my wireless router, the Netgear Wireless N600. I re-configured my router to use channel 11, set the security options to WPA2-PSK (AES), Mode set to 300mps. I disabled the guest network and the 5ghz wireless broadcast. After making those changes my wireless reception improved and I was consistently hitting 20 Mbs using the speed test app. My internet service is provided by Comcast. About the GPS... I was not able to lock onto any GPS satellites from inside my home. Took the table outside and locked on to 6 satellites and counting within seconds with great accuracy on location. Using the stock Navigation app I was able to lock and use. About light bleed... There is no light bleed what so ever on my tablet, confirmed using the light bleed app from the market. ONE issue I have with the tablet is when typing with the tablet using the stock keyboard can feel uncomfortable. Its like the edges of the tablet start digging into your palm. This will be easily be fixed once you put it in a case and/or download the app Thumb Keyboard. Performance wise, I did not notice any slowdown in switching between apps and screens until I installed the app called Pulse. This app or others like it may have a compatibility issue with the companion core causing a slow down when the Asus using the companion core to conserve power. Just something to keep in mind. The browser did not load web pages as fast as other free android browsers such as Opera, Dolphin Browser and Boat Browser. I was able to speed up the Asus stock browser by typing in the address bar, "about:debug" without quotes. *This will not take you to another screen though, follow my next steps...* Then enter the browser's settings, touch the option that says "debug", then make sure only the following is checked:
- Enable open GL rendering
- Enable Web Gl
- Use Wide viewport
Relaunch the stock browser and now one of my cons is no longer a con. Enjoy!
In short, this tablet looks great and does everything I want. I love everything about it, watching movies, fluidity, games, Multiple email account support using the Asus stock email app, and a beautiful display built into a great design to ice the cake. I was looking to jump in on a full featured Android tablet and I found it here with the transformer prime. All that's missing is Ice Cream Sandwich. I will update my review again when I receive the ICS update and/or our second transformer prime (champagne) that I ordered for my girlfriend. To bad it wont ship until the end of January early February from Amazon. The Grey Transformer tablet that I own know came from Best Buy, ordered on November 29th, shipped on December 19th, received on December 23rd. I know, I was one of the lucky ones!