Home > Review > ASUS PadFone: Unboxing, Benchmarking and Initial Impressions

ASUS PadFone: Unboxing, Benchmarking and Initial Impressions


Good day Folks!

As you know, Computex 2012 had just ended last weekend. Luckily, I was lucky enough to pay a visit and see all of the new things in store for 2012. Even luckier is that i got to pick up a little gift for myself.

Yes, The Asus Padfone.

The Asus Padfone is one of the most unique devices i have ever seen. On it’s own it’s a 4.3 inch SuperAmoled Smartphone powered by the latest Snapdragon S4 processor. What makes it unique though is the proprietary dock which you can insert the phone inside on. The magic doesn’t end there, though. There’s even an optional keyboard that turns the whole combination into something like the Transformer tablets from Asus. Pretty amazing, isn’t it?

Here’s a quick rundown of the specifications:

4.3inch Super Amoled Display with a qHD resolution
Dual-Core 1.5Ghz Snapdragon S4 Krait Processor
Adreno 225 GPU
1GB RAM
16GB, 32GB and 64GB internal storage (Expandable by MicroSD up to 32gB)
WiFi 802.11 b/g/n – Bluetooth 4.0 – HSPA+ 42Mbps
8 MP, 3264×2448 pixels, AF, LED flash
GPS w/ aGPS support
1520mAh Li-Ion battery
128 x 65.4 x 9.2 mm
Android 4.03

Optional Accesories:

10.1 inch Padfone Station (Expands battery life up to 64 hours)

Keyboard Dock (Expands battery life up to 103 hours)

Check out some of the pictures i took of the phone and tablet. I even got a free sleeve with the bundle, btw.

  

 

  

You may view the other pictures in Flickr.

The handset itself is pretty thin. It’s not as thin as the original Galaxy SII or even as thin as the Galaxy SII but it’s still hold pretty comfortable in the hand for a 4.3inch phone. It’s rather light at a gram less than 130g actually.

It’s the tablet that makes it quite heavy. During the last 3 days i found the tablet more comfortable to make texts and send emails but i did find it rather uneasy to hold it for prolonged periods of time. Nevertheless, i find the transformation of the whole device pretty amazing. If my knowledge is correct, the two ports in the padfone is a micro-SUB and a micro0HDMI port which sends the data and display to the padfone station. In short, the station only acts as a host for whatever the padfone sends it. This is what Asus calls “Dynamic Display”.

Here’s a demo video to show it’s capabilities.

Speaking of display, the padfone’s screen is actually bright even under direct sunlight. Viewing angles are not so bad but it’s not the best i’ve seen available in the market. Nevertheless, it is well above average.

Another feature that i find interesting is the stylus headset. I mean, it would indeed be funny if you pick up the padfone in tablet mode when someone calls or use it in loudspeaker at all times. This is where the stylus headset comes in handy. It syncs via bluetooth and acts as a receiver for voice calls. Pretty, neat e?

You can manually or automatically sync it with the phone when in ranged when the phone is docked inside the tablet then it will work like any ordinary bluetooth headset. It’s powered by a rechargeable battery and charging takes place via a microUSB port along with the volume and enter button on the phone. It even vibrates as a way of notifying you about calls. This being the case, it makes it a lot easier to pick up calls when your padfone is, say, hidden in your bag.

It did feel weird using the stylus as a phone in the middle of a crowd though.

All in all, the Padfone tries to cover all the basics in anyone’s day to day routine. It offers the best of both a tablet and a phone’s world while even throwing in a plethora of handy features.

Not to mention, it doesn’t slump in performance either. It actually tops HTC and SAMSUNG’s flagship phones – The OneX and the SIII respectively.  I’ve got benchmarks to validate my proof.


VELLAMO

Vellamo™ is an Android benchmark app, developed by Qualcomm Innovation Center, Inc. (QuIC), that tests the most important aspects of your mobile Web experience and generates a numeric score you can use to compare your Android device performance with others.”

As you can see, the Padfone is the new king of the hill even beating the Snadragon S4 version of the HTC oneX which has not even been released yet. Note that both the Padfone and the HTC One XL are both only dual cores and it handily beats the Quadcore Transformer Prime and the HTC OneX, both being powered by Nvidia’s Tegra 3.

We see the same parttern in the Quadrant and NenaMark benchmarking apps as well.

QUADRANT

Quadrant is a benchmark for mobile devices, capable of measuring CPU, memory, I/O and 3D graphics performance.”

NENAMARK 2

Although Quadrant does perform a number of different tests and compiles them into a file score, in my experience it’s a bit tilted towards CPU performance. If you’re interested in isolating the GPU, NenaMark is a great choice. NenaMark puts your phone through its paces by asking it to render a pre-determined scene. The camera flies through 3D terrain along a predetermined path and records the number of frames rendered each second. This is then averaged to provide a final result.”

Nenamark II

Nenamark II

NEOCORE

Neocore is an OpenGL-ES 1.1 graphics performance benchmark for Android devices. It shows off some of the techniques that are possible on accelerated platforms such as 1-pass light maps and bump mapping.”

NeoCore

NeoCore

So there you have it folks! I hope you enjoyed this short review that we made for the ASUS Padfone.

Here are the prices btw!

18,995NTD – Asus PadFone

23,995NTD – Asus PadFone + PadFone Station

28,995NTD – Asus PadFone + PadFone Station + Keyboard

That’s roughly PHP28.5K, PHP36K and PHP43.5K respectively.

Sadly, i hear it won’t reach the Philippines. Even if it does, it will be priced much more expensive than it is in Taiwan.

I’m expecting it to be like this:

32,995PHP – Asus PadFone

39,994PHP – Asus PadFone + PadFone Station

46,995PHP – Asus PadFone + PadFone Station + Keyboard

Maybe we’ll have better luck with the Padfone 2.

For now, enjoy the official PadFone commercial video!

For more information, visit the Asus website.

There’s an interesting design story in the Padfone’s microsite.

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