Asus is showing off innovations at Computex this week. The device-maker introduced two new tablets and a three-in-one mobile device.
The Asus Transformer Book Trio combines a notebook, tablet and desktop while the new Transformer Pad Infinity is an Nvidia Tegra 4-based tablet with a 2560x1600 resolution display. Asus also announced the six-inch Fonepad Note FHD 6 tablet with 3G voice-calling and the 7-inch MeMO Pad HD 7 value tablet on Monday.
It may be the MeMO HD 7 that really turns consumer heads. When it hits the market in July, the tablet will sell for $129 with 8 GB of internal storage and $149 for 16 GB. The tablet weighs 10.6 ounces and has a quad-core processor. The device also features a 10-point multi-touch 1280x800 IPS display with a 170-degree-wide viewing angle. It carries Asus SonicMaster audio technology, a front 1.2-megapixel camera and optional 5-megapixel rear-facing camera.
Who's Making Money?
Avi Greengart, a principal analyst at Current Analysis, told us the MeMO HD looks similar to the Nexus 7 in terms of specs and value.
"We are definitely seeing a race to the bottom in terms of price on Android tablets, even from well-known manufacturers," he said. "It's not clear whether anyone makes any money at those prices but the value proposition for consumers is pretty clear."
Although Apple often points out that consumers are using iPad tablets more frequently than Android tablets -- especially for Web browsing and e-commerce -- the story could change as Android devices proliferate. And not just because of the sheer volume.
Budget Tab Advantage
"Today's budget tablets have two distinct advantages over the ones from just a year or two ago," Greengart said. "One advantage is that the hardware specs, even at these low prices, have gotten to the point that the processors can keep up with the touchscreen commands. You can download apps and update and they run. You don't get stuttering in games."
The other advantage modern budget tablets offer is newer versions of Android. The Android operating system has improved over time -- and more vendors are deploying tablets with the latest version of Android.
"The user interface on the new versions of Android devices is much better and it's faster and smoother on the software side as well," Greengart said. "As Android tablets get better -- Google made a concerted effort at Google I/O to help developers create tablet-specific apps -- we'll see if that changes the market dynamics."
New ViVo Products
Asus also debuted the VivoPC, a wireless media center designed to provide HD Wi-Fi audio and video streaming through a high-speed 802.11ac connection. Consumers can also opt for the VivoMouse, a combined touchpad, mouse and PC remote designed to bring the Windows 8 touch experience to PCs without a touch display. And Asus showed the RT-AC68U, a dual-band 802.11ac router with combined AC1900 data rates of 1900Mbit/s.
Posted: 2013-06-03 @ 5:47pm PT
One other budget priced tablet to launch this week that's worth looking at is the new Novo 8 Discovery tablet by Ainol Electronics which is priced at $169 at T a b le t Sp r i n t-- and compares in size to the current iPad mini and this new model matches most features of the upcoming Acer Iconia A1 but at a more competitive price and features, that include a more powerful battery (5000 mAh) as well as twice the Memory... and offers a Quad Core processor, WiFi and Bluetooth 3.0... and is also one of the first Android tablets to offer Miracast HD Wireless capability, which is similar to Apple's $100 AirPlay system to provide wireless connection to any HDTV with high resolution 1080p HD -- ideal for streaming movies (including NetFlix), and to play 3G games on a Big Screen TV using the tablet as a motion control device, as well as to display any other tablet and web content in HD... essentially turning an HDTV into a multimedia computer console-- T ablet Sprint also features the new CloudNetGo Miracast HD wireless adapter ($45) which became available last week, and is less than half the price of most other Miracast HD Wireless systems on the market, which are currently priced around $100--