Asus Debuts New Tablets and Smartphones at Computex 2017
Asus had an impressive showing at Computex Taipei 2017, unveiling a slew of notebooks, tablets and smartphones. While some of what it unveiled had been announced previously this was (for the most part) the first time they were fully revealed alongside their specifications.
On the tablet front Asus refreshed its ZenPad 3 8.0 with a new ZenPad 3S 8.0. Largely an incremental upgrade, the new ZenPad 3S retains the 7.9 inch screen of its predecessor at a 1536x2048 pixel resolution, its 4,680 mAh battery, as well as its 4 GB of RAM. However it does sport a slightly better Snapdragon 652 processor, 13 MP and 5 MP cameras, and will run Android Nougat 7.0 out of the box. While far from groundbreaking, the most noticeable improvement in the new edition is the aluminum unibody that has a far more premium feel than the brushed metallic finish of its predecessor.
The other tablet Asus revealed was the new ZenPad 10. Essentially coming in two versions, the 10-inch tablet will either have a 1280x800 or 1920x1200 pixel resolution. Similarly the processor will vary between the MediaTek MT8753W 1.3 GHz and MediaTek MT8735A 1.4 GHz. Aside from that the specifications are nothing to shout about, with a USB-C connector, 3.5mm headphone jack, 5 MP and 2 MP cameras, microSD slots and 2 to 3 GB RAM depending on the version.
As far as smartphones go, Asus didn't so much announce a new smartphone as they did finally reveal the Asus ZenFone AR. Back in January this smartphone had been announced at CES, but details about it have been scant aside from the fact that it will be a Google Tango smartphone that focuses on providing an augmented reality (AR) experience.
While it may not be the first Google Tango phone to hit the market (that distinction goes to the Lenovo PHAB2 Pro), the Asus ZenFone AR is arguably a far more attractive option. In contrast to the unwieldy and bulky PHAB2, the ZenFone AR is a slim 5.7 inch phone that comes equipped with the Asus TriCam system to providing motion tracking and depth sensing alongside its 23 MP shooter and video recorder. It is powered by the Snapdragon 821 processor and has been optimized for Google Tango.
For those who are interested in AR or the Google Tango experience but may have been put off by Lenovo's handset, the Asus ZenFone AR is possibly the first phone that can realistically provide that. Now that it has been fully unveiled and is expected to be available towards the latter part of June, it shouldn't be long before it starts being seen in the wild.
Compared to some of the Asus reveals at previous Computex events, this years may have been the tamest - with no robots or experimental devices stealing the show. That being said the tablets and smartphones that did debut are certainly more likely to be the type of gadgets that people would actually end up owning - which is definitely a step in the right direction.