Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Asus VivoTab Smart ME400c - A Full Windows PC in a Tablet

Tablets with with full PC versions of Windows are nothing new. They have been around for some time, and for the most part have served a niche market. Windows 7 was not the best tablet operating system, and hence was the choice for a few enterprise clients who had to run full x86 PC software on a tablet form factor. Intel processors were also power hungry, giving this Windows tablets short battery life.

Enter Windows 8 and Intel's new Clover Trail Processors. Windows 8 gives you a user interface and apps which are optimized for tablets. At the same time you can also run your old PC software. The best of both worlds.  Intel's new Clover Trail Processors have enough power to run a full Windows operating system and at the same time provide 8-9 hours of battery life.

While several of these devices have been released in the Philippines, the new Windows 8 powered Asus VivoTab Smart ME400c really make me take notice. This tablet is selling for just Php25,999 with 64 GB of internal storage. This is a really good price for a 64 GB tablet, and given that Windows 8 occupies a fair amount of space a 64 GB tablet is really pretty much compulsory for a tablet with a full PC operating system inside. You can also expand storage via a microSD card slot. Asus also bundles this tablet with 32 GB of Asus Cloud Storage for 36 months.

The Asus VivoTab Smart ME400c has a 10.1-inch display with a HD (1366 x 768 pixel resolution) display. Inside is an Intel Atom Z2760 dual core processor and backed-up by 2 GB of RAM.  For connectivity you have WiFi, Bluetooth, HDMI, and a MicroUSB port. This tablet also comes with a 8 MP primary camera and a front facing 2 MP camera. Asus promises that you will get up to 9.5 hours of battery life with its new Windows 8 Tab.

Asus VivoTab Smart ME400c is almost as slim as an Apple iPad 4, at 9.7 mm, but the real bonus is that it is a lot lighter at just 1.28 pounds (an iPad 4 weighs in at 1.44 pounds).

A stylus and keyboard are available for the Asus VivoTab Smart ME400c, but I have not seen them yet locally, so I have no word on pricing.

Windows Phone has had a hard time gaining any traction. Windows RT tablets looks like they will get killed off by their full PC OS packing siblings. But I think Windows 8 tablets, might be able to break into the Android-iOS duopoly in a big way.

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