Asus announces Transformer 3 hybrids: three new tablets to compete with the Surface Pro 423
With the new ZenFone trio having just been announced, it's clear that Asus is a fan of releasing things in threes. The firm's hybrid tablet series has also been furnished with a major bump courtesy of the all-new Transformer 3, Transformer 3 Pro and Transformer Mini. With plenty of strong hardware to be found within the new line of slabs, Asus is gunning for the likes of the Microsoft Surface Pro 4—and not just in terms of power.
There's little question that these new slates are rather similar to Redmond's lauded Surface line. The profile of the Transformer 3 has clearly taken cues from what's already out there—right down to the similar keyboard and kickstand. With the Surface Pro 4 considered by many to be the gold standard of hybrids, it makes some sense that Asus would use the tried-and-tested device as a guide. Having said that, this new Transformer 3 clique could struggle to capture the imagination of the consumer with such a samey exterior.
Still, it's what's inside that counts, as they say, and the Transformer 3 series doesn't disappoint in this regard. The Pro model can be maxed out with Intel's seventh-gen Core i7 processor, 16 GB RAM and a 1 TB SSD. The standard model, meanwhile, can reach up to 8 GB RAM and 512 gigs of solid-state splendor. There's no i7 in the non-Pro variant, but rather an unspecified Intel Core 'Kaby Lake' chip.
Both get USB Type-C, Thunderbolt 3, Harman Kardon audio, USB 3.0 / HDMI ports and a fingerprint scanner. They're each also kitted out with 12-inch displays of 2880 x 1920 resolution, so clarity should not be an issue.
The Transformer 3 will retail at upwards of $800 while the Pro model will start at $1000. A third, Mini version will also be making its way to market in the near future with a 10.1-inch display and lightweight build. Naturally, the specs will also be sacrificed in favor of portability and a cheaper price point. Unfortunately, details on how much the Transformer 3 Mini will cost have yet to be revealed.
Let us know of your first impressions in the comments!