Oct 20 AT 3:22 PM Taylor Wimberly 36 Comments

Prime is coming, ready to set the benchmark for what tablets should be

Transformer Prime

Late last night we got our first look at the ASUS Transformer Prime and today more details are beginning to come out. ASUS now has a teaser page for the Prime which claims it’s better than its predecessor in every aspect – “faster, stronger, slimmer, and of course, sexier.”

Once again, the Prime is confirmed as the world’s first tablet to feature the next-generation quad-core chip from NVIDIA known as Kal-El (and soon to be Tegra 3). Other unconfirmed specs include a 10-inch display, only 8.3mm thin, mini-HDMI port, microSD card slot, aluminum casing, and of course the optional keyboard dock accessory (which now offers up to 16.5 hours of battery life).

If you want a quick look at the tablet in action check out the video interview with ASUS CEO Johny Shin shared by AllThingsD. The Prime appears to be running Honeycomb Android 3.x, but Shin mentioned that Ice Cream Sandwich Android 4.0 was coming by the end of the year – “sooner than we think.”

Today ASUS tweeted that Ice Cream Sandwich was “coming to an Eee Pad Transformer near you” and asked us to stay tuned for details. ASUS announced they would hold a launch event for the Transformer Prime on November 9th, so we won’t have to wait much longer.

Overall, I’m really pumped to get my hands on the Transformer Prime. Even if it ends up costing $499 like rumored. I have really enjoyed using my Tegra 2-powered Galaxy Tab 10.1 for the last six months, but it still leaves me wanting more performance and that’s why I’m excited for Tegra 3.

How do you think the Transformer Prime will be received? Are you willing to spend $499 on a tablet with ultra performance or would you rather opt for the mid-tier of tablets, like Amazon’s $199 Kindle Fire?

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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  • http://goo.gl/tQ2E wwJOSHdo

    The new Asus transformer and the nexus prime would make the perfect couple!

  • Dustin Earley

    If Samsung doesn’t release a new 10-incher soon, I just might jump on this.

  • SliestDragon

    This is my next tablet. Been waiting for this since I tried the first Transformer. Really looks like it will be a beast among tablets. :D

    • https://plus.google.com/117702410245683101961/posts Lucian Armasu

      This is what will turn tablets from “companion devices” as Intel likes to call them, into “laptop replacements”. Sure, it will take a little longer until you have all the usual apps you need on a “laptop”, but it will get there. It’s just a matter of time.

  • http://www.typhonrt.org/ Mike Leahy

    I’m totally on this one… Bring it on.. Considering I splurged essentially $800 for the G-Slate when it came out to jump on the tablet bandwagon $499 is certainly fine especially if the build quality is solid and T3 inside.. Bliss.. ;) Hey Taylor, you or anyone from A&M covering AnDevCon?

  • Dragonithe

    Really liking this tablet.
    Quad core power in a 8.3mm tablet that I can use as a netbook if I want it.

  • kwills88

    I think if the day were to ever come when tablets become more useful than PCs I think ASUS’ tablets would be leading the march…the dock and tablet combined, when closed is almost as thick as a Xoom (first edition)…I finally see a tablet I really want.

  • AppleFUD

    I would like to see the finish with a brushed or satin finish–it looks too much like the inside of a stainless steel frying pan at this point and too shiny = fingerprint magnet.

    • Edgar Cervantes

      Yeah, ti is the first thing I noticed about this tablet. The specs seem great, but that look is just too much. Very flashy…

  • Techrocket9

    I’d love to get one, but I won’t be able to justify it if it comes in over $300.00

  • https://plus.google.com/117702410245683101961/posts Lucian Armasu

    If they can really put Android 4.0 on it by the end of the year, then I think they should wait for Android 4.0. The reviews will be that much better, and the buzz around it much bigger, too. Still good without it, but just imagine if it came out directly with it.

  • Ryan

    I’ve got a credit card with a zero balance ,I can’t wait!

  • inviolable

    From the title, I thought there would be more detailed specs. I can’t get very excited about it at the moment when I don’t know much about it, other then the Tegra.

  • http://www.jeffkibuule.com Jeff

    I can see the most popular Windows 8 devices having a similar form factor to the Transformer Prime:tablet off the dock, and laptop with the dock. Well also probably see SSD only storage with a much stronger association with the cloud for accessing documents pictures, etc… You don’t really need all of that stored on the device, but rapid access to it. Plus, there are UsB ports if you want to browse for stuff on a Flash drive or hard drive.

    • Lucian Armasu

      Windows alone would occupy the standard 16 GB storage.


    wish i could but i cant :(

  • M3rc Nate

    Im definitely willing to spend a large one time price to get the tablet i want and will keep for a long time, not feeling the need to upgrade for probably at LEAST 3 years.

    This tablet so far seems to really hit all of my requirements.

    10 inches? check,
    thin? check,
    high performance? check,
    keyboard dock? check,
    Newest OS version? Check
    Mini HDMI? Check
    USB? Check
    Expandable Memory? Check
    16.5Hr battery? Check

    aluminum casing? bonus check!
    quad core? bonus check!

    All thats left is some details on the cameras (MP, quality, front and back?) Screen res/quality, and a promise it will receive future updates (like having it be apart of the Android Alliance)

    If its all those things i am almost a guaranteed buy, however i would still want to wait and see what the Samsung 10.1 (2) and Xoom 2 (etc) will be like. Especially considering the Xoom is the “nexus” of Tablets (its what the developers use so i assume its more likely to get updates).

    Overall, loving it! Cant wait to get a tabet, want one so badly.

    • spenc0007

      hi yes your very wise to hold back spending your hard earned cash but i want to let you know kal -el codename quadcore processor check 5x faster than dual core check but codename wayne is next 10x faster will you wait now uncheck bigger better is nvidia but by 2014 a processor 85x faster will you still wait now

      • M3rc Nate

        Cant tell if your mocking me or just pointed out that things get better over time with new releases?

        Anyways, like i said the quad core is a bonus check, meaning it isnt on my required list, a amazing dual core would have been good enough for me. It is has everything i want and i still wait a little bit to see what the Xoom 2 will be and the Samsung 10.1 (2) etc will be , isnt for a specific thing to be better. More just to see that i wont like one of those overall more. I suspect however that whenever the Prime actually ships, there will be at least a lot of info on the new gen of tablets, let alone they could be releasing around a similar date.

  • Louis

    I will definitely pay $499 for an Android 4.0, Terra 2 Quad core, 8.3mm thin, gorilla glass

    • M3rc Nate

      Just curious where did you hear Gorilla glass from?

  • Tyler

    Ya know, this tablet kind of dropped off my radar. I’d pretty much settled on spending the money on a decent laptop. With the launch drawing near and the new info making its way out on the web, my interest has certainly picked up again. Price would still be a concern if $499 is accurate, but sounds like it would be a worth while investment for an Android tablet spec’d like this. I’ll hold off real judgement until I see it in real use case situations. Asus, you have my attention. $399-$450 sounds better than $499 for my shallow wallet.

  • 666

    I love the hardware but I just don’t see the purpose of Android in this form factor. I’d prefer to see this exact same tablet sans keyboard dock and at 7″ with ICS.

  • SalsaForte

    If they sell both eee pad and eee pad prime i might get thr original one if they drop the price on it.

  • Anadrol

    “faster, stronger, slimmer, and of course, sexier.”

    Am I the only one to think you should see a sink if you find an object sexy ?

    • Legend

      Depends if you find the sink sexy I guess ;)

  • Steven

    Wow! The interviewer was a huge ass.

  • Vforvortex

    I was hoping to hear more about the padfone running ICS.
    ( http://www.cnet.co.uk/i/c/blg/cat/mobiles/asus-padfone.jpg )
    Wish google released a Nexus Tablet version too that had the option of phone dock on back like that. That would basically take care of my phone, tablet, laptop :D And the best part, only have to use one sim card.

  • sap26

    I returned my original TF because it didn’t have support for Netflix, HBO GO, or video chat. That was my main reason for getting a tablet and yes, that was long before the updates. Will people have to wait just as long for similar updates with ICS on the TF2?

  • Eurodude

    I’m thinking great Tablet… But now that the power seems to develop faster than the OS and probably the OS will have trouble holding on to the power available, I fear that we will have hardcore Tablets with desktop like performance but the Software is only able to use 10% of that power… It seems already that Intel’s Atom is taken by nVidia’s Tegra 3…

    Don’t get me wrong. I’m really excited about this device. I would also be excited if Tegra 5 Transformer would come with Windows 8 or something or if Android would come so far, that content creation would be possible on such devices. I would love for those devices to replace the Notebooks. Having a small device for on the go and being able to work on the device would be great. So programming is a must for me.

    The best device for me would be the Padfone Transformer… Meaning the Padfone with a keyboard dock. Those two together would be awesome. No more 2 Sim Cards to have Internet on the go and enough juice for the day. Even in “Notebook”-Mode… So Manufacturers get to it! And stop the custom UI nonsense… or at least make it available as an aftermarket App in your custom App-Store…

  • spookz

    When i saw the “Prime is coming” i thought the Nexus Prime was coming until i read the full title :(

  • Ribbign

    Why did they have to name it Transformer Prime though? Makes it hard googling it. I just end up with a bunch of pictures of a certain red and blue robot.

  • blitz120

    Already I am looking daily for a credible site that offers preorder. I WANT one of these — it will be my first tablet. I already bought the original Transformer for my stepson as a High School graduation present — he loves it — and I’m a sucker for quad (quint) cores.

    I’m surprised at people concerned about the price — $499 is what one would pay for an iPad, and they would be stuck with an iPad.

  • Sal

    I will be picking one up at launch if possible. I hope to install the ARM version of Windows 8 on it next year :)

  • Simon

    the main reason i didn’t buy the original transformer was due to the lack of ports on the tablet itself (not the dock). For the tablet to be useful, you need the dock to be with you always.

    The table didn’t have USB support (microUSB) which is very important.
    Personally I wouldn’t want to carry the dock on me all the time, but it will be sitting at home.

    I really hope this tablet will have at least one microUSB port on the tablet itself.

  • Raymond Davis

    kitchen or bathroom sink?