Asus just kicked out two new 10.1-inch tablets, powered by Nvidia Tegra 2 for the graphics and a pair of QWERTY sliding keyboard mods that miraculously turn them into light and portable laptops. Sort of. But you have to admit it’s still convenient to type on physical keys rather than the virtual alternative. Basically, there are two models that fall within this category: The Eee Pad Slider (to the left) that boasts a IPS, 1280 x 800 resolution touchscreen with some sort of mechanism that looks exactly like a slider mobile phone (where the screen slides in and out), and the Eee Pad Transformer which probably got its inspiration from Lenovo’s U1 Hybrid laptop – and that means a detached screen which you can reattach to the typing base at your own will. And while the slider weights only 2.2 pounds and packs up to 1 GB of memory along with 16/32GB of storage, WiFi, Bluetooth, optional 3G connectivity, HDMI out, mini USB, a 1.2mp front facing camera plus a 5mp one (with LED flash on the back) and a MicroSD card slot, the Transformer on the other hand, boasts pretty much the same, only with one extra USB hub, a card reader and battery pack that is claimed to deliver up to 16 hours of work. And best of all, both devices will arrive preloaded with Google’s android 3.0 platform, which you might also know as Google’s Honeycomb. As for prices, Asus says that you’ll have to shell out between $500 to $800 for the Slider and about $400 and $700 for the Transformer flavor. availability is rumored for early Q2. Full specs after the break.
Update1: We’ve added a couple of hands-on videos, courtesy of JkkMobile. Check ’em out after the break.
Update2: We now hear rumblings that Asus’ latest and greatest hybrid model, known as the Transformer, is going to live in the UK around May or June for £379 ($595), while the base unit will cost you a £100 ($155) more. As for the Slider version – which seems even more attractive IMHO – word on the street is that we’re looking at a July / August release with a whopping £429 ($675) price tag.