Asus has launched a new tablet range, called the ZenPad, which consists of two devices. However, while rumors prior to the announcement indicated we would get a 7-inch and an 8-inch model, Asus has actually confirmed four models: A 7-inch, two 8-inch tablets, and a 10.1-inch version with an optional keyboard. Here’s everything you need to know about them.
Updated on 06-01-2015 by Andy Boxall: Added in official release information for the ZenPad 8 and ZenPad S8.
The ZenPad S8 is the more technically impressive of the two 8-inch models. The 8-inch screen has a high 2,048 x 1,536 pixel resolution IPS LCD screen, placed on the front of a super thin 6.6mm metallic-look body, which weighs just under 300 grams. An Intel Z3580 quad-core processor running at 2.33GHz and working with 4GB RAM — a first on an 8-inch tablet, according to Asus — powers the tablet, and there’s is an option of 16GB, 32GB, or 64GB internal storage space, plus a MicroSD card slot.
There are two cameras, an 8 megapixel on the rear and a 5 megapixel on the front, and Android Lollipop is installed as standard. Interestingly, Asus has fitted the S8 with a USB Type-C connector to recharge the battery, but decided to only offer the tablet as a Wi-Fi model. Asus will release a stylus for the ZenPad S8.0, called the Z Stylus, which has a 1.2mm tip and 1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity.
A more modestly specced tablet, the ZenPad 8.0 also has an 8-inch screen, but the resolution is just 1,280 x 800. Another Intel processor powers the slate, and this time it’s a Rockchip-produced 1.2GHz Atom with either 1GB or 2GB of RAM. An 8GB or 16GB version will be produced, and there is the option of buying it with 4G LTE connectivity.
The cameras are less capable at 5 megapixels and 2 megapixels, and the metal finish chassis is thicker at 8.5mm. The Android Lollipop OS remains, but the charging system reverts back to the usual Micro USB port.
However, don’t pass by the ZenPad 8.0 just yet. Asus has come up with a series of rear covers that enhance the little tablet in interesting ways. The ZenCase comes in leather and a selection of different colors, while the Zen Clutch turns the tablet into a fashion accessory, while making it easier to carry around. The Power Case adds an extended life battery that’s good for an additional 15 hours of use. Finally, in another tablet world first, the Audio Cover gives the tablet 5.1 channels of surround sound.
While Asus has stated a 7-inch and a 10.1-inch ZenPad will be released, it hasn’t provided any information on either, so we’ll have to wait to discover how they stack up against the two 8-inch models. It’s the same situation for the price and availability of all the ZenPad tablets, but we’ll update here when we know more.
CONTINUE TO PAGE TWO FOR ALL THE RUMORS REGARDING THE ZENPAD TABLETS