CES: Asus debuts Eee tablet family

CES: Asus debuts Eee tablet family

Summary: At CES 2011, Asus announced a new family of tablet devices using its "Eee" moniker, ranging from a pocketable 7-inch device with a stylus to a netbook-like device with a sliding keyboard.

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CES 2011

LAS VEGAS -- Asus on Tuesday announced a new family of tablet devices using its "Eee" moniker, ranging from a pocketable 7-inch device with a stylus to a netbook-like device with a sliding keyboard.

The first device announced by the company, called the Eee Pad MeMO, has a 7-inch IPS ("in-plane switching," like the iPad) capacitive touchscreen display and a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. It runs on Google Android -- version 3.0, skinned by Asus -- and can manage 1080p HD video playback, according to the company. (It will have a micro HDMI port.)

It's also compatible with a stylus, which is included. It will be available in June starting at $499.

The new Eee Slate EP121, on the other hand, is more like a traditional tablet computer, running on Microsoft Windows 7 with help from an Intel Core i5 470UM processor, up to 4 gigabytes of memory, 32 or 64 gigabytes of solid state storage and reportedly a Wacom Digitizer-compatible 1280-by-800-pixel resolution LED-backlit capacitive touchscreen display, viewable at a 178-degree angle and which hints at its intended use.

It also sports 802.11n Wi-Fi connectivity, Bluetooth 3.0, two USB 2.0 ports, an HDMI port and a 2.0-megapixel camera. It will start at $999.

The third announced device, the Eee Pad Transformer, is what we've come to call a "convertible netbook." (Although it remains to be seen who would be interested in such a device.) The device touts an Nvidia Tegra 2 dual-core processor, a 10.1-inch (1280 by 800-pixel resolution) IPS display and two cameras: 5 megapixels in the back and 1.2 MP in the front.

It supports Flash and will have a mini HDMI port. It will also have an optional docking station. (Get it? "Transformer"?)

The big sales points: it's got a 16-hour battery life and is thinner than an iPad once the keyboard is detached. It will be available in April starting at $399.

Finally, the Eee Pad Slider's claim to fame is a slide-out QWERTY keyboard. Along with that comes a 10.1-inch IPS capacitive touchscreen display, an Nvidia Tegra 2 processor and Google Android 3.0. It's got a pair of cameras -- 5 megapixels in the back, 1.2 megapixels on the front -- weighs 1.98 lbs. and is just 0.66 inches thick. Onboard 3G optional.

It will be available in May starting at $499.

Topics: Hardware, Laptops, Mobility, Tablets

Andrew Nusca

About Andrew Nusca

Andrew Nusca is a former writer-editor for ZDNet and contributor to CNET. During his tenure, he was the editor of SmartPlanet, ZDNet's sister site about innovation.

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10 comments
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  • I'll take mine with Windows 7 please!

    Thanks!
    NonZealot
    • RE: CES: Asus debuts Eee tablet family

      @NonZealot

      Its a great machine (I read additional reviews of the Eee Slate EP121 tablet on Gizmodo and Engadget) but it only has a reported max 3.5 hour battery life and only a 64 GB SSD max.

      For a primarily content viewing tablet, 64 GB is more than enough memory. (My iPad has 64 GB)

      For a full fledged PC (which this machine is), 64 GB is not really that much anymore. That size limit was a main point of contention on the original Apple MacBook Air.

      Looking at the back of the case, I don't think this has a user replaceable battery pack option (although I could be mistaken). If that's the case, I believe ASUS other tablet options running Android 3.0 would be a better option. (The Transformer claims 15 hours of batter life .. although I would bet that to achieve that run time, the detachable keyboard would need to remain attached since I suspect the battery would be contained in that module.
      kenosha77a
  • This illustrates the problem with Windows 7 on tablets very clearly.

    The Windows 7 tablet costs twice as much, heavier, hotter, thicker, less battery life. Sure Windows dildos will buy it. Who else?????????
    DonnieBoy
    • This illustrates the problem with iPads very clearly

      @DonnieBoy
      iPads cost 500 times more, are heavier, hotter, thicker, and have less battery life than a pad of paper. Sure, Apple dildos will buy it. Who else????????

      PS Windows 7 tablets can accomplish [b]so[/b] much more than iPads can, just like iPads can accomplish [b]so[/b] much more than pads of paper can. Windows 7 tablets cost more because they can do more and you get what you pay for!
      NonZealot
      • RE: CES: Asus debuts Eee tablet family

        @NonZealot

        It's not that iPads or Android tablets aren't capable of doing more, it's just that the Windows platform is so much more mature than the others and thus has more available software. So if you need that maturity for your job, get it of course. But realize that by the next time you are ready to make a purchase a few years down the other platforms may have matured to the point of being able to do what the Windows platform can.

        Though of course by then Windows may also get its wheels rolling again and catch up to the iPad's and Android's abilities, mainly the ability to run on low powered devices.
        Michael Kelly
    • yep and...

      @DonnieBoy yep and also runs more you pompass ass... If it were a clone of your favorite device you would mock it and not because it isn't you knock it...

      For the reccord, I have an iPad and Incredible so it has nothing to do with being a fanboi, that is where you come in! And no, I have no plans to big another tablet but I often wish this iPad would do more that my Windows box does!
      slickjim
    • Wow.. someone's feeling a little stressed today...

      @DonnieBoy "Windows dildos"?<br><br>Man, that was lame even by YOUR standards. <br><br>What next? "Windows poopooheads?"
      TheWerewolf
  • what a joke

    my guess: ces will be full of tablets running windows 7 (like last year) or honeycomb coming out some time in june (or later) and more expensive than the ipad. heavier, thicker with a weaker battery. the whole mediocre, we-don't-have-any-idea-ourselves, copycat, me-too industry is a whole and utter joke. thank god, there is apple.
    banned from zdnet
    • Spoken like a person who's clearly never used one...

      @banned from zdnet When you compare the prices for what you get, the Windows slate come up way ahead of the iPad. Heavier? Some are - but my HP Slate is actually slightly *lighter* than the iPad. Battery life? Perhaps - but not that many people regularly use a slate for 5 hours in a stretch, let alone 10. 10 is nice, but 5 is more than good enough for most people.
      TheWerewolf
  • I have an HP Slate 500...

    (yes - really - I do)<br><br>And it's simply fantastic. All the lightweight portability of an iPad, but can actually run serious applications. Since it has a digital pen, I can draw with it and 'type' with handwriting.<br><br>I can use REAL photoshop, not a binned down web version.

    And of course, I can use websites with Flash. And output to a TV over HDMI - and connect real peripherals not just 'iPeripherals'.
    TheWerewolf