ASUS dares to be different at every opportunity. The company’s latest release, the Eee Pad Transformer tablet, is one of the few currently available that runs the Android 3.0 update, Honeycomb. The $399 Tegra 2-equipped device rivals the iPad 2, but for $100 less, and it can be converted into a netbook using a special keyboard/trackpad docking station with its own built-in battery. It’s hard to say what the next trick will be for ASUS, but the company is teasing a reveal for Computex 2011 that asks “Pad or Phone?”
The above image is accompanied by a series of suggestive but ultimately unrevealing product photos posted over on Engadget. Lots of looks at rounded edges and ASUS logos, but it’s impossible to distinguish anything concrete from what’s there. The “Pad or Phone?” question suggests that we may be looking at a fusion of both — Engadget calls it a slate device — in the same way that the Pad Transformer is a convertible netbook/tablet. Exactly how that will be realized is a mystery that won’t be unraveled until Computex kicks off in Taipei next week.
Meanwhile, ASUS has been struggling to keep up with demand on the Pad Transformer, which went on sale in North America in late April. The cheapest-on-the-market Honeycomb tablet sold out almost immediately, and supplies have been limited since then. Most retailers are pointing to June as the time to expect more shipments.