eee pad transformer 1 Asus launches the Eee Pad Transformer in Taiwan

It's been nearly three months since Asus first showed off its Android tablets and earlier today the first of the new models launched, at least in Taiwan. The Eee Pad Transformer was launched by the company chairman, Jonney Shih with what appeared to be every single local media on location. Not much that wasn't already known was announced, although we did find out a few new details with regard to software features as well as the much important retail price.

It's been nearly three months since Asus first showed off its Android tablets and earlier today the first of the new models launched, at least in Taiwan. The Eee Pad Transformer was launched by the company chairman, Jonney Shih with what appeared to be every single local media on location. Not much that wasn't already known was announced, although we did find out a few new details with regard to software features as well as the much important retail price.

jonney shih Asus launches the Eee Pad Transformer in Taiwan

With regards to the software features, Asus has added a custom DLNA app called MyNet which allows for media streaming to and from other DLNA compatible devices. MyCloud is a version of Asus' cloud storage service which is free for the first year and US$4.99 a month after that and it's supposedly unlimited in terms of storage space. Another cool feature of MyCloud is remote PC access which allows you to access your desktop or notebook computer even if you're not at home or in the office. Finally MyLibrary is an eBook/eMagazine/ePaper app that is tied in with various service providers depending on where in the world you live. Asus has also included a copy of Polaris Office 3.0 which is compatible with standard office document files such as .doc .xls and .ppt.

eee pad transformer 2 Asus launches the Eee Pad Transformer in Taiwan

The build quality of the final product units of the Eee Pad Transformer are much better than the units we've seen before, although one concern is the overly stiff hinge of the keyboard dock and the fact that in “notebook mode” the Eee Pad Transformer we got some hands on time with today didn't shut properly as you'd expect of a notebook. Minor issues maybe, but not something you'd expect of what is meant to be production ready hardware. We were told that the reason for the stiff screen hinge was that it's because of the weight of the tablet part and in Asus' defence, it's nowhere near as top heavy as Acer's W500 AMD C-50 tablet and Asus' proprietary dock connector feels a lot more secure than the standard USB port that Acer decided to use.

eee pad transformer 1 Asus launches the Eee Pad Transformer in Taiwan

The pricing ended up better than we expected, in fact the Eee Pad Transformer is one of the most affordable Tegra 2 tablets to date. Just keep in mind that it doesn't have 3G/HSPA connectivity which is a contributing factor to the lower price point. The 16GB will retail for NT$14,900 (S$639) in Taiwan, with the 32GB model at NT$16,900 (S$725). These prices don't include the keyboard/battery dock which is an extra NT$3000 (S$129) in either configuration. You'd be mad getting the Eee Pad Transformer without the keyboard dock though as not only does it double the battery life, but it also adds a pair of USB 2.0 ports and a full-size SD card slot. The tablet itself houses a microSD card slot, a mini HDMI port and a headphone socket.