Product Asus Padfone 2
Specifications 4.7in 720x1280 312ppi touchscreen phone display, 10.1in 1280x800 IPS touchscreen tablet display, Qualcomm quad-core 1.5GHz processor, 13MP rear camera, 1.2MP front camera, 802.11 a/b/g/n WLAN, Bluetooth, NFC, HSPA+, LTE, WCDMA, EDGE/GPRS/GSM, 2GB RAM, 16/32/64GB internal storage, 3.5mm headphone jack, microUSB port, non-removable Li-ion 2,140mAh phone battery, 5,000mAh tablet battery, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean mobile operating system, phone 138x69x9mm, tablet 263x181x10.4mm, phone 135g, tablet 514g
WITH THE ARRIVAL OF WINDOWS 8, transforming devices have become all the rage, with seemingly every hardware firm under the sun rushing out hybrid machines. Clearly aware of this, Asus has taken a page out of Optimus Prime's book, creating devices that are more than meets the eye.
However, unlike most firms that aim to offer tablets that turn into laptops, Asus has taken a different approach with its Padfone 2 to create a phone that turns into a tablet.
In theory this will allow users to run two devices from the same SIM card, thus saving money on data.
Design and build
The Padfone 2 keeps up Asus' understated approach to design, with both the smartphone and tablet sections having a bare-bones, minimalist look.
The main smartphone section, which is the heart of the device, looks something like a cross between an iPhone 5 and black LG Optimus 4X HD handset.
It features a metallic band around its sides, a plain Gorilla Glass front and a textured plastic back, complemented with slightly rounded corners.
The Padfone measures 138x69x9mm and weighs 135g, meaning that is in the same size bracket as most top-end Android smartphones.
Overall, this makes the Padfone smartphone look fairly unassuming compared to the vibrant designs seen on competing devices like the HTC One, Samsung Galaxy S4 and Nokia Lumia 920.
While some might be put off by the understated design, we quite liked its unashamed focus on usability over fancy design, with the metal surround and textured back making making the Padfone's smartphone section feel solid yet comfortable in the hand.
Our only real qualm with the smartphone's design is that, like the HTC One and Apple iPhone 5, its silver metal sections are prone to picking up marks and blemishes, meaning it can soon start to look scruffy.
Next: Design and build.
Sign up for INQbot – a weekly roundup of the best from the INQ