Review | ASUS Transformer Prime

ASUS Transformer Prime 32 GB with Keyboard DockI’ve had the ASUS Transformer Prime with its keyboard dock in my possession now for just over three weeks. I figured that’s long enough so I should probably write a post and do a little review of it.

I’m going to separate this review into three different sections to try to make this a little bit easier for everybody. The first section will be a description of why I bought the Prime. I want everyone to understand why I got one, the features I was most interested and the specifications I considered before making the purchase. Then I will list all of the pros and cons that I think are applicable.

If you’d like, you can find the rest of the pictures I took of my Prime in this album here.

Transformer Prime: Why buy?

I have a desktop computer that is way more powerful than any laptop I’ve seen. The first thoughts I had about getting rid of my laptop and buying a tablet started forming when I realized that. When I’m at home, I use my desktop, not my laptop. It would be nice however to have a tablet every once in a while to be able to read or check out my tweets on a big screen rather than on my phone.

So if I was getting rid of my laptop for a tablet, what did I need from that tablet? I wanted something that I can read a book on, pass the time when I’m bored, has the option of buying a keyboard so I can type an email or blog post easier than with the on-screen keyboard and a front-facing camera for Skype is a plus. This is where I started my search and surprisingly, it narrowed down pretty quickly.

After seeing the Transformer Prime’s specifications, it was almost impossible to say no to it. Sporting the NVidia Tegra 3 Quad-Core processor, 1GB of RAM, 32GB of internal memory, Ice Cream Sandwich and a micro HDMI out port, this tablet is one of the quickest in its class.

The final straw that made me open my wallet was the keyboard dock. Not only does it have a keyboard that can match that of a netbook, it includes a trackpad, a full-size SD card slot, a full-size USB port AND it’s own battery! Done and done!

So I bought it. The brand-new, ASUS Transformer Prime along with its matching keyboard dock were mine. Three weeks later, what do I think? Was it worth the money? Would I go back and do it again? Here is the pros and cons list that I could come up with.

Pros

The keyboard dock. I realize that this costs extra money to get but for me, it was completely worth it. The dock makes this into a real, usable computer for everyday things like sending an email or writing a blog post but is one flip of a switch away from turning it back into a stand-alone tablet. Also the extra battery in the keyboard gives it double the battery life. The specs website lists 18 hours.

ASUS Webstorage. When you buy your Transformer Prime, you are automatically signed up for a life-time membership to ASUS Webstorage. 8GB of it to be exact! This works just like Dropbox just with a different name. If you don’t have your ASUS Transformer Prime yet but you want to sign up for a free 2GB ASUS Webstorage account, you can do that here.

Ice Cream Sandwich. With the Transformer Prime, you have access to Ice Cream Sandwich already, which not a lot of devices can boast. And with being such an advanced tablet, it will be sure to be getting all of the latest and greatest updates for a long time.

Pre-installed Apps. Most of the time this would be lumped under the cons section, which some people inevitably will do, but actually ASUS has installed some very useful apps. Along with the ASUS Webstorage app, they have provided you with App Locker and Backup programs, the TegraZone app as well as Polaris Office, a very nice office suite that is currently not available in the Android Market.

Cons

Price. Obviously one of the biggest downfalls of the ASUS Transformer Prime is the price. Being one of the fastest and most advanced tablets right now, it is also going to have one of the biggest price tags. And with the keyboard being sold separate, get ready for your bank account to be drained.

Hard to open. This only applies if you buy the keyboard dock. While I love the dock, apparently no one thought about trying to open it up when it’s closed. There is nothing to grab onto and the tablet is so skinny that it is hard to get your fingers in to open it up to use. This is more annoying than anything.

The Trackpad. I feel that the trackpad is a little bit to sensitive for my taste and it is much easier to just reach up and touch what you want. I use the analogy, it’s like using an older Blackberry with the little track ball versus an Android phone with a touch screen. It’s so much easier to just tap the screen than trying to roll around to try to find what you want.

Is there anything else you’ve been dying to know about the ASUS Transformer Prime? Let it rip down in the comments and I’ll let you know what I think.

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