What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

Summary: Imagine a thin tablet running Windows 8 that plugs into a laptop dock to become a full notebook computer.


The CES is about to get underway in Las Vegas and we are sure to see a lot of Ultrabooks and tablets on display. There will no doubt be future products on display that will run Windows 8 in all its Metro interface glory. What I want to see more than anything is a hybrid Windows 8 tablet that pops into a laptop dock for double duty as a laptop. Think of an ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8.

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The ASUS Transformer Prime, which I am anxious to get my hands on, is a thin Android tablet that runs state-of-the-art tablet hardware. It is the best Android tablet on the market, and has the added distinction of plugging into a laptop dock for those times when a keyboard is needed. This turns the Transformer Prime into the most versatile tablet, and I can't help thinking how great that would be with Windows 8 onboard.

Imagine having a tablet running the Metro interface of Windows 8, capable of running new apps designed for touch operation. It would be awesome if that included pen input for those scenarios when it makes sense, although it isn't absolutely necessary. Even without the pen it would be a full Windows tablet as capable of those running other OSes.

Now imagine that tablet can be plugged into a laptop dock, gaining a full keyboard and trackpad for operation as a laptop. This would be able to handle not only the new apps designed for Metro, but the thousands of legacy Windows apps already out there. This would be the most capable laptop or tablet on the market, and running Windows.

The ASUS Transformer Prime gains the benefit of an extra 10 hours of battery life when plugged into the laptop dock as it has a second battery inside. This would be spectacular with Windows 8 onboard, as it would then become the longest running Windows laptop on the market for its size and weight.

The Android-running Transformer Prime retails for $500, $650 with the laptop dock. That is a solid price point for the Windows 8 version I want to see. I predict ASUS would sell as many of these as it could produce, in fact I believe this would quickly become the biggest-selling tablet that is not an iPad. I also believe it would be the top-selling laptop, for which it would also qualify. It would be a runaway best-selling hit of the year.

This is a product that could be made today, not sometime in the future like a lot of gadgets that will be shown at the CES. It is already a shipping product, with a quad-core Tegra 3 processor that is tailor-made for Windows 8 for ARM. It could be one of the first real products shipping with Windows 8, and the only one that can take full advantage of the new version of Windows. If the Microsoft team developing Windows 8 hasn't already gotten Windows 8 running on one of these, someone should be fired.

I can envision the TV ad for the Windows 8 Transformer Prime. A man sitting at his desk at home using it as a laptop, and his wife comes in and says "Maybe we should look at those tablets everyone is talking about. A tablet would sure be handy." Then he pops the screen off the laptop and hands it to her. Oh yes, they'd sell millions of these.

How about it? Would you be willing to try a Transformer Prime with laptop dock running Windows 8?

Topics: Tablets, Hardware, Laptops, Microsoft, Mobility, Operating Systems, Software, Windows

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  • RE: What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

    This is the product I'm waiting for.
    • Asus doesn't need your business

      @thomg57 Asus is unlikely to be able to ramp their manufacturing capacity to meet the already-existing demand for the Transformer Prime before the end of the year as-is, and then the new tech is due. To take away from that to build some untried product is just dumb.

      Like the iPad, they're riding the tiger. They should just keep riding it. The idea is not to find a winner and then stop.
      • Transformer does NOT need Windows.

        why would you want software that will crash your system. Will make everything break after an update an render it useless. And have to pay extra for the miserable experience.<br><br>You want to waste your money on windows.. be my guest... I will never consider a product that has windows on a Tablet, its not designed for that. It may be adapted for it, but the basic design is not there. <br><br>Windows 7.5? Mango.. yeah.. we do C# development and it may be cool. But I rather keep investing resources on current Android apps as the return is constant and increasing. There is no need to spend resources on Windows. Windows is too much of a resource hog. The only way to use Windows on Android is through a VM and a machine that can handle the extra resources Windows needs.
  • RE: What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

    Cool product and going in the right direction. I would be very concerned about the durability of the dock connector, but otherwise nice.
  • RE: What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

    Need a good windows based tablet that will not kill me. A lot of my work related proprietary software runs only on windows only and these emulators and remote desktop applications are killing me.
    • RE: What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

      @rgor@... Try the 3G Transformer Prime with Citrix or other remote desktop solution. You then get the glory of a true Android Tablet with all-day battery, and access to a real Windows desktop with the resources to run heavy apps. The best of both worlds.

      And take a look at this, due out soon: http://androidos.in/2012/01/asus-transformer-prime-tf202/
      • You get 1st run at the price ....

        @symbolset .... for responding with suggestions about the exact items the poster is complaining.

        In other words ... you get the 1st submition of the year for the "RTFPBR" (read the effing post before responding) award.
  • RE: What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

    For once, I agree wholeheartedly with James. The "adaptable tablet" will, I believe, become the predominant format for tablets/laptops in the future for everything other than the ultra-high-end laptop market.<br><br>Thankfully, Asus have already stated that they'll be releasing a Transformer running Win8 this year so it sounds like I can write my list to Santa early this year <img border="0" src="http://www.cnet.com/i/mb/emoticons/wink.gif" alt="wink">
  • Not at all

    WoA is not what you think it is, and Windows on the Prime would ruin it. Asus will be making this to serve the counterfeit demand blogs like this generate in the comments - but like the raves for Windows Phone the real person who actually ponies up his own cash to buy it at full retail will be beyond rare.

    But hey - at least after you've proved that it's horrible, you'll at least be able to put cyanogen on it - probably. And they should go cheap on Woot and eBay.
    • RE: What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

      @symbolset I've had experienced with more then one Android Tab, and they have not met my standard. They are usually NOT smooth as expected. I've been using Android for the pass 2 years and I had been waiting for them to sort out all of annoying bugs. But Android has failed me, so I make a switch to Windows Mango and never looked back. I can tell you that I do missed Google Maps and being able to play Adobe flash. I also like to put in a few words that putting the all Mighty Windows 8 is an overkill for Tablets, simply put Windows Mango would more then enough. I've also had really bad experience with the previous Windows Mobile, but I have forgiven Microsoft by rewarding me with Windows Mango and the next Windows 8. Thinking of using Windows Mango on tablets is already giving me goosebumps.
      • Experience change with time

        @itsmebentang : You have bad experience? But did you try a quadcore running android 4 before?
  • RE: What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

    I'd buy one tonight!
  • What would be nice ...

    ... is tablets that have retractable stands at the back of them, that tilt the tablets upwards when you fold them out. (I used to suggest that tablets should be designed so that they could be pulled out and pivoted upwards. The above suggestion is however simpler and cheaper.) Beyond that, the Asus Transformer and Slider models seem great.
    P. Douglas
  • Windows 8 Running On A Tablet Would Be A Nightmare!!

    I'm sorry man, I can read the enthusiasm and excitement in your writing about this, but I honestly cannot stand Windows on a laptop never mind a tablet! I've had my hands on a Windows tablet and I just hate every aspect of it. Windows is just a horrible operating system. Linux is so much simpler and easier to use than Windows, not to mention its helluva lot more efficient.

    I really want the Transformer Prime because its running Android, a Linux based system, not Windows. If the Prime ever ran Windows I would just sulk in disappointment at Asus and wait for another Tegra 3 device running IceCream Sandwich. Windows is just too much of a pain to use. I could only imagine the hours of frustration as a result of owning a Windows tablet. That's just my two cents.
    • RE: What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

      @ThomasKarys Where I understand your point of view, you're not an average consumer. Most consumers want things to work with the stuff they have already purchased. Grandma isn't going to root her Android device and compile her own desktop Kernel. I've tried to get Linux flavors infront of everyday people, they keep asking me to put Windows back on their PCs.
      • RE: What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

        @ianr@... Linux works with the stuff they already use. I click on documents and they open. Grandma and I don't have to root anything. It worked to start with. I haven't compiled a kernel in years. I get automatic updates. My hardware just works. I don't have to worry about drivers. I regularly hand out Linux CDs to friends with little computer experience. They seem to have had no problems loading and using it. These same people used to call me with problems and questions when trying to get Windows working.

        The simple reality is ... Linux is easier to install and use than Windows for most people. Windows is either pre-loaded by the manufacturer or the average person gets assistance from someone else.
      • RE: What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

        @ianr@... Yeah I know the exact same. I've tried to introduce Linux to people and they just want to go back to Windows even though Linux, in my opinion, is the best way to go in terms of operating systems. After Vista came through I just couldn't take it anymore. XP was alright, I liked it actually lots of different distros of it (not legal...) lol @ Grandma rooting her Android.
    • Not sure what youre smoking but linux is never going to be easier to use

      than windows for joe average consumer. Not sure how youre defining more efficient but all preliminary indications from the dev preview are that win8 will be smaller and faster and have longer battery life.
      Johnny Vegas
    • RE: What I want: ASUS Transformer Prime running Windows 8

      @ThomasKarys That argument may have been true years ago... but Windows has not been a pain to work with since Windows 7... so I'm not sure where you're coming from there. Most of my machines are pretty high end, but even on my mid-range laptop... Win 7 just works... no hiccups, freezing, crashing, etc. With even further refinements being made to Win 8... I rather look forward to owning a Windows 8 tablet, and upgrading to Win 8 on all my laptops as well after the 1st SP and any necessary patches for my most used software and games.
      • Lost Interest in windows altogether

        Windows is irrelevant and Office is unnecessary. Cloud based apps are going to kill Microsoft, and Cloud based = Mobile based in so many ways. I work for a large Telco as a business Consultant and so many small businesses are moving to the cloud. Had an elderly customer the other day who is using Android and DropBox and Linux and Mac - files are current - work is done - Windows is nowhere. I bought a cheap notebook with Windows 7 to set up as a photobooth for a family occasion, but I wanted to run the E7 HomePremium inside a Linux VM - the OE Disks are useless for this - and neither Windows nor HP would come to the party with a clean copy of the OS. So no Windows 7 anymore. Loaded Suse Linux 12.1 - runs faster - has everything I need. Windows -- ho hum!