A few hours earlier, at URBN, a very rustic bar and restaurant, Asus Philippines unveiled to its media partners the newest iteration of their 7” tablets, one that functions both as a phone and a tablet – the Fonepad.
Succeeding the Nexus, it differs through messaging and telephony functions as well as a microSD slot nicely hidden on a detachable top panel right above a 3.2MP rear camera which all variants/SKUs of the Nexus does not have.
This specsheet above shows how lucky we are here in the country to be able to get an SKU with a 32GB internal memory AND a rear camera which was not supposed to happen according to the February presentation by Chairman Shih. There is a model with a lower internal memory and that costs 3,000Php less than that indicated.
A brief computing history and usage patterns as well as, of course, an Intel roadmap and a personal account of a very effective hybrid solution that the Fonepad offers were provided to us along with a hands on demo and a live video feed which showed us all the new software and features that the device offers: (AudioWizard, UpdatedUI, AsusStudio, and AsusSplendid which allows for color variance for preferential viewers)
Afterwards everyone was roaming around and enjoying the buffet while viewing the numerous available Fonepads that were present along with Asus reps (Jave and Irene in the photo below) who were more than glad to provide clarifications to any and all inquiries.
I was able to have some alone time with the device and I used it to make a comparison between it and its older brother the Nexus which AsusPh had given to me for an earlier competition.
From top to bottom: aluminum back plate with a rear camera vs the plastic matted finish, moved the location of the power/standby and the volume rocker to the opposite side, the speaker grille and location of the 3.5mm jack, and an Asus branding at the bottom of the Fonepad as well as four system buttons as opposed to three of the vanilla Android.
The Fonepad is quite the character, its light, has phenomenal standby time (up to 32 hours), very bright, and acts as a phone through a microSIM. Its 4th week of May release can’t come too soon; the price to spec ratio would definitely find its way to even the most discerning of power users. Full PR after the break.
Manila, Philippines (May 14, 2012) ― ASUS Philippines Fonepad™, a competitively priced handheld with 3G voice and mobile data for all the features of a smartphone, with the versatility of a 7-inch tablet.
The ASUS Fonepad
ASUS Fonepad™ is ideal for people who value both the voice communication features of a smartphone and the entertainment opportunities afforded by a tablet, but prefer the convenience of carrying just one device.
Powered by the latest Intel® Atom™ Z2420 processor with full Android compatibility, Fonepad™ which comes in Titanium Gray and Champagne Gold, features a perfect balance of performance and energy efficiency, with hardware-accelerated 1080p Full HD video decoding. The 7-inch screen features 10-point multi-touch, and a 1280 x 800 HD resolution for crisp screen results.
Built-in 3G with HSPA+ mobile data means ASUS Fonepad™ is an always-connected mobile device for seamless web browsing, fast downloads from Google Play Store, and smooth streaming of audio and video. Thanks to its full 3G telephony support, Fonepad™ can also be used for voice calls using the built-in noise-cancelling digital microphone or an optional Bluetooth headset. With just one mobile data plan to pay for, running costs are also much lower than those of a separate smartphone and 3G tablet.
Fonepad™ is available in 8GB and 32GB capacities, and has an SD card slot for up to 32GB of additional storage. All models feature a front 1.2-megapixel camera for easy video chat and an optional rear 3-megapixel autofocus camera with 720p HD video recording. ASUS SonicMaster audio technology with MaxxAudio 3 processing by Waves ensures clear, well-rounded sound quality.
Availability and Pricing
The ASUS Fonepad will be out in stores during the last week of May at very attractive prices of Php 14, 995 for 32GB variant.