Asus Eee Pad Transformer TF101 Tablet Overview

Asus Eee Pad Transformer TF101 (A1)The Asus Eee Pad Transformer TF101 is Asustek’s first Android tablet. It features a 10.1-inch display and an optional keyboard dock that transforms the device into a netbook computer.

The 1.5-pound half-an-inch-thick TF101 is based on the Nvidia Tegra 2 1GHz dual-core processor that powers Android 3.0 “Honeycomb” OS with Asus Waveshare user interface, Flash 10.2 support, pre-loaded Polaris Office suite and access to Android Market and Asus Webstorage cloud service. Its capacitive multi-touch display, covered with scratch resistant glass, uses IPS technology and has a resolution of 1280-by-800 pixels.

The Transformer is capable of playing 1080p HD videos and streaming them onto an external HDTV or monitor via the mini-HDMI port. There are also a front 1.2-megapixel and rear 5MP web camera, stereo speakers, wireless-n and Bluetooth connections, GPS, gravity sensor, e-compass and gyroscope, an SD card reader and docking port.

Asustek’s tablet has a textured non-glossy pattern on its lid and comes with 1GB of DDR2 memory and 16GB or 32GB of Flash storage. Units with smaller storage capacity are the Transformer TF101-A1 and TF101-A2, while 32GB is included in the TF101-B1 and TF101-B2.

We are not sure what’s the difference between the A1 and A2 and the B1 and B2, but it could be that the A2 and B2 come bundled with the docking station, which is otherwise sold separately. Besides the QWERTY keyboard with touchpad, the dock includes a secondary battery that expands tablet’s autonomy to maximal 16 hours, instead of 9.5 with the default battery, as well as two USB 2.0 ports, and a MMC/SD/SDHC card reader.

According to the company’s spokesperson David Chang, there’s a shortage of the Transformer TF101 tablets currently in the market. That’s because of high demand, not component shortages, he said. Production will be reportedly increased in June.

In the U.S, select retailers and e-tailers list the sold out Transformer TF101-A1 for around $400, while B&H is taking pre-orders. According to their product page, the tablet will ship after May 31st. The docking station (SKU: TF101 Docking) is on back-order at various stores and is priced at $140.

UPDATE (05/20/2011): The Transformer is now in stock at Best Buy for $399.00 for the TF101-A1 model.

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