ASUS Transformer TF101-A1 10.1-Inch Tablet (Dock Sold Separately) Reviews

ASUS Transformer TF101-A1 10.1-Inch Tablet (Dock Sold Separately)

  • 10.1″ WSVGA (1280×800) IPS Capacitive LED Touchscreen; Android 3.2 Operating System
  • NVIDIA Tegra 2 CPU; 1GB of DDR2 SDRAM, 1 slot, 1GB Max; 16GB Internal Flash Memory; Wireless 802.11bgn; Bluetooth 2.1
  • Mini HDMI Port; Micro SD Card Slot; 1.2MP (front) and 5.0MP (rear) Webcam
  • GPS; Gravity Sensor; E-Compass; Light Sensor; Gyroscope; 24.4Wh Lithium Polymer Battery (Up to 9.5 Hours Battery Life)
  • 40-Pin Docking Port for Optional Keyboard (Keyboard Not included)/Docking Station (Model Name: TF101 DOCKING)

With a slim, lightweight design and a 10.1-inch WSVGA IPS capacitive display made from durable and scratch-resistant glass that is viewable at angles up to 178°, the versatile Eee Pad Transformer is the perfect tablet for anyone who want to enjoy multimedia on the move, but still wish to have easy access to the web, email, and other productivity applications. A custom user interface provides easy access to the many features of the Android 3.2 (Honeycomb) operating system, while the NVIDIA® Teg

List Price: $ 399.00

Price:

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3 Responses to ASUS Transformer TF101-A1 10.1-Inch Tablet (Dock Sold Separately) Reviews

  1. Alex Tamulis says:
    2,080 of 2,103 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Best Honeycomb 3.2 tablet so far (updated August 3rd 2011), April 26, 2011
    By 
    Alex Tamulis (Edmonton, AB Canada) –
    (REAL NAME)
      

    This review is from: ASUS Transformer TF101-A1 10.1-Inch Tablet (Dock Sold Separately) (Personal Computers)

    I was lucky enough to wake up early today and go to Memory Express in Edmonton and they had one. Stores received a limited amount of tablets and they were all sold out within hours, including here on Amazon. I’ve been playing with this thing for hours now and so far I’ve only had great experiences with it.

    The main feature for me is the remote desktop: you can access your PC, whether it’s a Mac or a PC, if they’re both connected to your home wi-fi connection. You can control your PC from anywhere and use all of its features. I watched a HD movie and worked on MS Word docs, everything went smoothly.
    The tablet doesn’t weigh much for its size and the IPS screen is amazing, it’s the same screen used on the iPad 2. I’m not a person who needs to buy products made by just one brand. I like Apple and I own a iPhone 4, but when it came to deciding which tablet to buy, I went for the Transformer because it offers me a tablet/netbook function, the best of both worlds.
    The tablet itself has a microSD card slot so I already have 32GB more to use it. The docking station (which can be purchased by 149.99) has 2 USB ports and 1 SD Card slot.
    You can edit Microsoft Office docs on it using Polaris Office, it’s great and this app comes pre-installed on it. Playing mp3s or acc files on it it’s great too. You can use the app MyNet to play music from your own PC or Mac, via bluetooth.

    I’m playing SNES games using SNESoid app and using a Wiimote/Classic Controller via Bluetooth and everything works great! It has native email (which Blackberry Playbook doesn’t) and you can sync your calendar and contacts easily. It has full flash compatibility. For $399, there’s nothing on the market with these specs. The Motorola Xoom has similar specs and it costs $200 more. It doesn’t give you the option to attach a docking station with all those slots. When I buy computers, I want to be able to upload content to it easily, or transfer files from it easily as well. The Apple system is ok but needing iTunes for everything is kinda like a dictatorship. I had to jailbreak my iPhone to be able to play SNES games on it, or even listen to music on Grooveshark. That’s where the Android Market comes in.

    You can download any apps you want, any developer can create apps for it, it’s a “free” system. It’s not as wide as the App Store, but it’s getting bigger and bigger by the minute. I downloaded the Kindle app and already transferred all my e-books to it (I also own a Kindle and I love it).

    There are some quirks that have to be tweaked with Honeycomb 3.0 OS and that’s something Google is working on. That’s easy since updates will be released (an update is scheduled in 2 days). So that will improve the overall performance of the OS. But I honestly didn’t have any issues with it, I really like Honeycomb 3.0 so far.

    I definitely recommend this thing for people who want to use their tablets as an extension or even a replacement to their laptops. Asus has hit a home run with this one, since it costs much less than anybody else and its specs are great. It’s hands down the best purchase I’ve had under 400 bucks.

    The docking station is sold out anywhere else but I pre-ordered it on Amazon and I’m hoping to get it in a couple of weeks. I’ll post a video with the combo once I get everything up and running. I’m a iOS person who’s welcoming Android with open arms!

    Review Update: Apr 29 2011 – Ok, so I’ve been using my Transformer for a few days so I’d like to add a few pros and cons to this review.

    Pros: beside what’s been mentioned above, I noticed that:

    - multitasking is really easy on the Transformer. You can quickly jump from one app to the other, check e-mails, browse something on Wikipedia, listen to music and even have your Skype session open at the same time. I was chatting with my dad and multitasking and had no issues. The Skype app needs updates, but that’s nothing to do with Asus.

    - File Manager: this feature is great! You don’t have to hook up your Transformer to your computer all the time to move, copy or paste files. You can create new folders and even transfer files from your microSD card straight to it. I transferred a movie from my microsd Card folder (path is rootremovable to access microSD files) to my Movies folder and it was very quick. And I didn’t need to plug it in in order to access or move the files.

    - Widgets: Your Desktop Area (Or Asus Launcher) is very wide so you can add many widgets to it, and they’re very handy. That’s something that can’t be done on the iPad 2. Mind you Widgets can affect the speed a bit, but nothing noticeable at all. Those people running speed tests between iPad 2 and the Transformer need to bear that in mind.

    - Weight: believe it or not, it doesn’t feel heavy at all for its size.

    Cons: ok, so here it is:

    -smudges on screen – it’s a fingerprint…

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  2. M. Kim "gadget freak and man-toy expert" says:
    862 of 884 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Awesome with one little complaint **Usage Update***, April 28, 2011
    By 
    Amazon Verified Purchase(http://www.amazon.com/gp/community-help/amazon-verified-purchase/176-3082764-6922745', ‘AmazonHelp’, ‘width=400,height=500,resizable=1,scrollbars=1,toolbar=0,status=1′);return false; “>What’s this?)
    This review is from: ASUS Transformer TF101-A1 10.1-Inch Tablet (Dock Sold Separately) (Personal Computers)

    I was one of the lucky view at the stroke of midnight on April 26th, was able to get my order in on Amazon. I just received my tablet tonight via Amazon Prime.

    I’ve been on Android since the original T-Mobile G1 released, and have owned an iPad since September of last year, so quite awhile on both. This is my first ownership experience of a Honeycomb 3.0 tablet.

    Software wise, there’s not that much I can add in terms of what others haven’t already said. It’s VERY refreshing coming from iOS, to actually not be staring at pages and pages of useless icons. The notifications are ABSOLUTELY sweet (i.e. useful!). The app quick access with screenshots adds to a very desktop-esque experience, but with the navigability of a tablet UI.

    Most things run very smooth, typical of all the standard Tegra 2 devices. Speakers are surprisingly loud, and there are actually 2 of them (stereo). Screen is absolutely gorgeous (IPS).

    If you’re deep in Google services, such as Gmail, Picasa, Youtube, Docs, etc. Honeycomb is a godsend. I have almost 20gb’s of photos in Picasa, and after one account setup, EVERY SINGLE PICTURE synced. Pretty much all my cloud files and settings synced. From Chrome bookmarks to docs to pictures…. it seriously is a breath of fresh air to have things “just work”, without the use of something like iTunes.

    Granted, if you’re not a Googler like me, it won’t be AS beneficial, but that’s not to say it’s still not a great device.

    It also charges FAST as hell. My iPad takes on average 6 hours to go from 0% to 100%. I haven’t done a full discharge on the Asus, but it went from 7% to 100% in a little under 2 hrs. That’s insane.

    The not so great, both the front and rear camera seem slightly sub-par as far as clarity goes. Very usable, but not great. My only real complaint is the “tightness” of the construction. I absolutely don’t mind the plastic. It’s light, grippy, sturdy, and looks great. However, along the bezel where the plastic seems to meet the glass, the Transformer tends to creak. Nothing worth concern, but it would be nice for a device that’s basically a slab of glass to “sound” solid in your hand.Then I think to myself, this thing cost 399… It’s 100 bucks less then the cheapest iPad.

    So, the question really isn’t “Is this thing awesome” or “is it better then an iPad”. I believe either of those answers are really up for interpretation. However, when you throw in the equation of PRICE…”Is this thing awesome for 399″ , i have to give a resounding “YES!”.

    ****** Edit : Usage Update *******

    So I’ve been using this tablet in place of my iPad exclusively for about 4 days now, and have better insight to the Transformer.

    The good is that my previous complaint about the build quality really has proven to be a really superficial concern. It does faintly creak in a couple spots, but I would have to classify the actual severity as minimal to non-existant.

    Also, after reading the issues with the Asus update, I decided to proceed since it’s only been documented that a handful (i.e. less then 5) people out of potential thousands have actually had issues. My update went without an issue.

    I hear people complain about the lack of apps specifically for tablet. I can happily say that i haven’t experience this limitation since even most non-tablet specific apps scale fine. “things look stretched out”. Yes, that’s actually an indication that Android was designed to scale properly (literally). Look at iOS, they literally blow up non iPad apps to the point of pixelation. Android’s solution, while not ideal, is much better and most non-tablet specific apps actually work and look just fine. Having a FULL browser is incredibly helpful.

    The notification system is awesome. Just this change makes this tablet twice as more productive then my iPad.

    Now, admittedly, there have been more not-so-good issues that I’ve discovered. First off, the tablet is definitely prone to freezes and locks. On several occasions it would just freeze completely and would require a reboot. Also, there have been several times where, when going from portrait to landscape, the resolution of the screen stayed fixed. This would result in an odd partial-screen view. Usually fixed itself after a couple of seconds of rotating the tablet. Other times, presses are unresponsive, ex. opening an app. This is definitely a software issue however, not an issue with the capacitive hardware.

    YouTube playback was surprisingly choppy, even in standard def. The recent update however, seemed to have improved that greatly.

    Last thing, just like most Android devices, the user experience is proned to “slow-down” once you’ve been on it for any decent amount of time. Can’t be a RAM issue as this has 1GB, and at any given time there’s only 400mb or so in use.

    All in all, most of these…

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  3. GPSUser says:
    501 of 524 people found the following review helpful
    3.0 out of 5 stars
    Still not the end all be all, June 1, 2011
    By 
    GPSUser (L.A., CA USA) –
    Amazon Verified Purchase(http://www.amazon.com/gp/community-help/amazon-verified-purchase/176-3082764-6922745', ‘AmazonHelp’, ‘width=400,height=500,resizable=1,scrollbars=1,toolbar=0,status=1′);return false; “>What’s this?)

    I purchased the Transformer with the keyboard from Amazon recently. Before I bought it, I was on the fence between this tablet, Ipad2 and the yet to be released Toshiba Android tablet. I had a hard time deciding between getting the Ipad2 and this Transformer tablet since I already have some investment with Apple/Itunes because of my iphone4. But the ability to run flash programs, built in GPS in the base unit, with microSD external storage and a larger screen with more resolution was the swaying factor. I’m neither an Apple or Google fanboy. I just want stuff to work and make my life easier or fun.

    First, the display unit is very nice and sharp. It is a bit glossy and it will reflect quite a bit and it’s also a finger print magnet. It’s also has a tackiness as you finger will not glide as easy as you might expect but these are minor quibbles. I don’t mind the back shell of unit as well as some others have commented that it feels cheap. It feels fine to me.

    It’s major disadvantage seems to be weak wifi performance. I have a Dlink N router and none of my laptops or iphone have any performance issues around my house. The tablet frequently registers fair to poor signal strength with wifi dropping off sporadically. I’ve altered my router to use a different channel which seemed to help the reliability of the connection but data rate is poor overall. But with wifi being it’s only lifeline, you’d expect it to perform better.

    Video playback at 1080p is not great either. I’ve tried streaming from DLNA source and on the microSD of some 1080p movies and the frame rates are very choppy. You’ll get one second of video and about 2 seconds of freezing. Playback on DVD definition video is adequate but not great. No freezing but doesn’t seem very smooth. With the recent update to 3.1 Honeycomb did improve video playback, but it didn’t fix the video playback problem. I will have to try some movies at 720p to see if that helps.

    This is my first experience with Google Android. On some things like the browser or Google Earth the system works great with the touch interface and provides a near seamless experience. But it still needs a lot more polishing all around. When I pinch and zoom in Google Earth, it won’t zoom in or out in the area I’m pinching in, just the center of the screen. You can’t pinch and zoom in an email either. The browser has flash support, some sites won’t recognize it as a full fledged browser and redirects you to the mobile version of their website so you can’t access the flash version of their sites. When you do get a site with flash, it seems slow. The other thing that’s a nuisance is that some apps prefer to run in either portrait or landscape mode and you can’t switch seamlessly around from both for certain apps. It is a pain to switch to portrait mode with keyboard attached. I still have other glitches where my keyboard would disappear and become non functional until I take the tablet off and plug it back in and I’ve gotten a few lock ups with video playback. Switching the wifi off/on seems to put it in a quandary sometimes. Overall, 3.1 Android still feels unfinished.

    It’s a bit disappointing in the end, I took one star off for unfinished Android experience and another star off for awful wifi performance/range and 1080p playback which is important to me. The only glimmer of hope is that these issues may get resolved with a future update. Then again, maybe I got a bad unit or my expectations were too high.

    6/5/2011 Update: You can pinch/zoom in the browser by turning off Auto-fit page option in the browser. 720P movies works but bogs down when there are heavy changes in the video. There’s a rhythmic change in speed every second. It’s very subtle but noticeable in slow smooth pans in video. 720 over DLNA works fine. Youtube video browser is pretty good. Network still drops out for no reason. I just realized there’s no easy way to print from the tablet.

    7/20/2011 Update: Just updated firmware which seem to address the problem of the wifi not picking up my wireless after coming out of sleep mode. Not sure what else the update addressed.

    8/29/2011 Update: Applied the 3.2 update a few weeks ago and just updated with a new firmware. I’m happy to say the lumpiness in 720 playback speed has been fixed. The odd thing was some of the 1080 playback has gotten a bit worse. In the past, the files would at least load and playback with lots of choppiness. Now 1080 files will not load at all. A step backwards in a feature that wasn’t working properly to begin with.

    Also, the battery life with the docking station has improved dramatically. Before the update, the tablet would run out of juice 1.5 days when tablet + docking station was just sleeping. So far it’s been about 3-4 days and it still has about 70% battery left.

    I worked around my wifi problem by buying…

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