At long last, the Asus Padfone is finally, officially released. We first saw the Padfone in the flesh at last year’s COMPUTEX during Asus’ presscon and now it’s finally ready. The heart of the whole concept is a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED equipped smartphone that’s running a dual-core 1.5GHz processor under the hood, along with Android 4.0 (ICS). Imaging-wise, you’re given an 8-megapixel digital camera with a five-element lens that doesn’t skimp on quality, and along with near universal connectivity via Wi-Fi, EDGE/GPRS/GSM 850/900/1800/1900MHz and 3G via HSPA+ with 21Mbit/s, 42Mbit/s (optional) DL, 5.76Mbit/s UL means that you’ll almost always have a way to connect to the internet.
Of course, like we saw in COMPUTEX last year, the Padfone isn’t just a phone per se. It can actually dock with a larger, bigger screen – a 10.1-inch (1280 x 800) capacitive multi-touch screen to be precise – to transform into a fully fledged tablet. All the computing duties are handled by the smaller smartphone, with the larger screen acting like…well, a larger screen and a bigger 6600mAh that supplements the 1520mAh lithium-ion that’s located on the base unit. Asus also says that any app running on the base device will also continue on the larger screen when you connect it, allowing you to transfer from a small screen to a bigger one without interrupting whatever you’re doing. The device will also be able to use a specialized stylus that not only allows you to write on the tablet with greater precision, but will also act as a Bluetooth bridge of sorts for calls and the like.
Just like their previous tablet devices, the Padfone can also dock with a dedicated keyboard unit, which gives the device better flexibility and hopefully gives the device even better battery life. No word yet on how much this little docking wonder will cost nor when it’ll land, but at least it’s nearing the finish line, right?