Computex 2012: 5 upcoming Windows 8 tablets
| by Karan Shah
Computex 2012, so far has been full of Windows 8 tablets, Ultrabooks and All in Ones. This new genre of Windows 8 slates are looking to usher in a new genre of tablets cum Ultrabooks with their keyboard dock and touch functionality. Coupled with the productivity superiority of Windows, they look to put up a formidable fight against the lot of Android and iOS devices. Also, it’s not just the software they have, but the entire package – the design, the hardware, the features, which may further accentuate its appeal and demand amongst the masses. From what has been announced so far, here’s our pick of the coolest Windows 8 tablets
The Asus TAICHI is one of the most interesting tablets at Computex 2012. It packs in two screens, both LED backlit, IPS panels with Full HD resolution, except that the one on the outside of the lid is a touchscreen, so the notebook acts as a tablet when closed. With the lid open, the outer screen switches off and tablet transforms into a standard notebook. You get a full-sized QWERTY keyboard and trackpad. Since both the screens share the same hardware, Asus claim that you can use both the screens at the same time. Not too sure what purpose this would serve, but there you go. The entire device is extremely lightweight, just like their Zenbook series and will be available in two sizes, 11.6-inch and 13.3-inch form factors. The TAICHI will be powered by Intel’s 3rd Generation Ivy Bridge CPUs and will have SSD based storage. They haven’t divulged too much information on this, yet.
Imagine sitting with your friends and showing off your new tablet, notebook or hybrid tablet. Double the displays, double the fun. As far as productivity is concerned though, we’re not too sure, if two displays will help, but we’ll leave that to ASUS to worry about.
The Iconia W510 is one interesting tablet with a 10.1-inch IPS display and a removable keyboard dock, something similar to what we saw on the Transformer Prime. But there’s one difference out here. This one comes with a keyboard dock and a swivel that can allow the tablet to be docked into presentation mode, with the keyboard neatly towed away at the back. The device allows for rotation up to 295 degrees for presentations and watching content. Connectivity options are well covered as well with SIM support, microSD card support, HDMI and micro USB on the tablet. The keyboard dock has two neatly placed USB ports as well.
MSI Slider S20
Similar to the Asus EeePad Slider, the MSI Slider S20 instantly transforms itself from being a tablet to a notebook. It’s got a slide-out feel, which might increase the overall thickness by a bit. However, the major advantage it has over the others is that you don’t need to bother carrying your keyboard along, since it always comes along with you. Coming to the specs department, the MSI Slider S20 has a screen that measures 11.6-inch diagonally, along with an Intel Ivy Bridge processor and Windows 8 onboard.
The Slider S20
There’s no news, yet about detailed specs, pricing and availability, but if priced correctly, we’re betting on this one to rock the Windows 8 show.
Acer Iconia W700
The ICONIA W700 is a Windows 8 tablet with an 11.6-inch full HD (1920 x 1080) display, coupled with the added versatility of a cradle. It is designed to set new standards in ergonomics and user-friendliness and comes across as a presentation tablet with multimedia capabilities. Not much has been divulged about the CPU, but chances are high that it’s running Intel’s Ivy Bridge CPU. The ports along the sides of the tablet, include the Power button, volume rocker, headphone jack and a Thunderbolt port. There’s also a five megapixel autofocus camera at the back and a Windows key and a front facing camera on the front.
The W700 with the dock
The dock allows landscape as well as portrait orientation, which is suitable for showing presentations, browsing or watching content. The slide-in dock is pretty unique and something unlike what we’ve seen in the recent past from manufacturers. Chances are high that the W700 may have more docks to further enhance its productivity.
ASUS Transformer Book
The Transformer Book, unlike the TAICHI is more familiar, as it’s loosely based on the Android Transformer tablets and Asus is calling it the world’s first ‘convertible notebook’. It allows users to instantly switch between a notebook and a tablet by simply detaching the screen. It is aimed at users who prefer the portability of a multi-touch tablet computer for leisure, but still want access to a more traditional Windows-based notebook for productivity.
The Transformer Book features the latest Intel Core i7 processor with discrete graphics, along with SSD and HDD storage, 4GB DDR3 dual channel RAM, and USB 3.0. It also features ASUS SonicMaster technology, developed by the ASUS Golden Ear team to deliver crystal-clear sound with deep rich bass through its integrated speakers. The Transformer Book also sports dual-cameras, with a HD front-facing camera and a 5MP rear-facing camera making it a tool for both photo-taking and video chats. This lightweight, ultra portable device is available with an 11.6-inch, 13-inch or 14-inch Full HD IPS display with multi-touch capabilities. Asus hasn't revealed any pricing or release details, as of now, but we should expect them towards the end of the year when Microsoft launch Windows 8. Top end specs, a Prime-ish design and Windows 8 onboard, this looks like one hell of a Transformer.
Now, that's our list of tablet that caught our attention. Which one did you like the most? Let us know in the comments section below.
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