The long wait is over! Asus Transformer Pad Infinity TF700T is finally here. After several postponements of the release date, Transformer Infinity was launched in Australia at an Asus media event held in Sydney on August 7.
This new member of the Transformer family is believed to be the best Android tablet in the market right now. We all remember the Transformer Prime released last year. Let’s look at the differences between the two.
First thing you’ll notice about the Infinity is its full HD Super IPS+ display with a 224ppi pixel density (1920 x 1200). Although less than the new iPad in numbers, side by side comparisons claim the difference is not recognizable to the naked eye. The screen is protected by the new Corning Gorilla Glass 2, which is slightly thinner than the previous one providing the same strength.
The next big advance over the Prime is the WiFi and GPS reception. The Transformer Prime had major issues with WiFi and GPS reception due to its full metallic finish. Asus has fixed this issue by using a rubber style strip at the back of the device.
The cameras are also upgraded. The Infinity packs a 2MP front-facing camera for video chat and an 8MP camera at the back with built-in flash.
Although no one will really use a 10” tablet to take pictures, Asus has really worked on the rear camera promising stunning pictures, being hailed as the best camera on a tablet so far (even compared to the Samsung Galaxy SIII’s camera by some reviewers).
Other special features of the Infinity are its optional keyboard dock, providing additional battery life (up to 14hrs), a full QWERTY keyboard, a full sized USB port and an SD card slot, turning the tablet into a netbook.
There seems to be some controversy over the TF700T’s keyboard dock, with some people claiming Asus has just repackaged the Prime’s keyboard dock and is selling it as the Infinity’s dock (the sticker and the firmware indicate the dock is a TF201 dock and on the box it says “compatible with TF700 Series/TF201”).
This would have not been a problem if the docks were sold at the same price and the TF201 dock worked fine with the infinity, but that is not the case. There is a $50 difference between the old and the ‘new’ dock.
Also, since the Infinity is slightly heavier than the Prime, the dock should not be the same to avoid the tablet tipping over. At the same time there are people who have bought the Prime dock and say it works fine with the Infinity. (Amazon reviews)
The tablet sells for 499USD in the states for the 32GB WiFi model (3G/4G LTE model promised to be available later this year) and 599USD for the 64GB. It supports Android ICS out of the box, but Asus has confirmed the Jelly Bean update will be available “in the coming months”. The optional keyboard dock for the Infinity has a 150$ price tag, while you can get the Prime’s dock for 100$.
These are the US prices. Things are a bit different down under.
Asus is only providing a 64GB of the infinity with keyboard dock included for 999AUD (previously promised 899AUD). The reason as to why Asus is only providing a bundled version of the tablet in Australia is due to Asus’ past experience with the Prime. They believe that everyone getting the Infinity would want the keyboard dock as well (Read this).
I believe they have a point about the bundle, but why the expensive price tag and only 64GB version?