The tablet market is going to be busy for the next few months and competition is growing. At the top of course is arguably Apple with its Retina Display equipped iPad and Microsoft is hoping to make a dent with its own Surface tablet, then of course there is Google and it’s Nexus 7. Asus are adding their own branded tablet to the more premium market tablets with the Asus Transformer Infinity.
The infinity is a full HD screened Android tablet that is looking to go head on with the iPad, this will of course not be the easiest thing to do as Apple are so dominant in the market. With its stylish looks though and high battery life it’s looking to wow its users.
The look of the Infinity will be instantly recognisable to Transformer Prime users, and is a look that rivals the iPad for its stylish design which is of course the first test for people who like the fashionable look of Apple products. The screen comes in at 10.1 inches, and the tablet itself is around 8.5mm in thickness which actually makes it slimmer than the iPad and manages to be lighter too. It should be noted though when the tablet is docked into its keyboard then of course the weight will be increased.
The screen is protected by Gorilla Glass 2 which makes it scratch resistant, with this upgrade in the glass this also keeps down the thinness as the first version of Gorilla Glass was thicker (the one used on the Prime). It does its job just as well though protecting the precious screen from annoying scratches.
The screen as mentioned is 10.1 inches and is capable of full HD at 1920x1200. As with the Prime this is a very nice colourful and vibrant screen, something that the Asus range of tablets are known for. One noticeable thing though which is something outside of Asus’ control is that the icons for the applications on the screen can often let down the HD quality of the screen. Putting this aside the video quality is excellent and at 224 PPI is quite close to the iPads 264 PPI, but not there yet though. Compared to other Android tablets though the superiority is obvious.
There is also a Super IPS+ mode that can be turned on, so along with the protective glass this can be used outdoors with minimum glare and bright visuals. The only issue with this though will be battery life which will be affected. One thing is for sure though visually this tablet is up there with the iPad and ready to do battle.
The Infinity comes with Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0) when you first turn it on and Asus have also added their own software to this to add to the user experience. This includes new camera features to play with and apps such as the @vibe Fun Center which is Asus’ answer to the iTunes store. This interface for this is quite poor though so you will probably find yourself sticking to Google Play more, it’s nice to have more choice of course and you will have access to things such as music, books and apps from Asus.
Asus have worked to improve Ice Cream Sandwich for their own system and have improved certain things such as taking screenshots and settings for the tablet. This is all surprisingly slick and very well presented (other than @vibe) and compliments the tablet as a whole; this is welcome as it can often be found that some companies can get this side of things wrong.
Along with the excellent screen the Infinity has provided the tablet with plenty of power underneath the hood. With a NVIDIA Tegra quadcore procession running at 1.6 GHz and extra processor for smaller tasks this is quite a beast. Everything you do runs fast and smoothly without slowdown. This includes games which run at a good frame rate.
For cameras it has a 8 megapixel rear camera and 2 megapixel one on the front. The tablet is capable of recording full HD and has no problems with HD video calling too. Add all this to a strong battery life (around 14 hours stated but this is depending on what is being used). It should also be noted that as of right now this is a Wi-Fi only model.
With the Snap-On keyboard, excellent screen and powerful processing capabilities this is a tablet to be reckoned with. What Asus have done is to take the Transformer Prime and update it to make it competition for the iPad, which in Android terms it does manage to do. At the price it is quoted at though (£599/$650) I do always question the need for a tablet over a laptop that can offer more. This is of course a personal choice, for a premium tablet this would be an excellent buy.