Saturday, 2 June 2012

Asus Transformer or iPad?

Having used my Transformer for a year now I've started to realise my next tablet will possibly be an iPad.

Don't get me wrong, the TF101 is still a nice piece of hardware and the keyboard dock is useful (I'm actually writing this blog on it right now!), I'm just not sure tje keyboard is such a big deal.  What I use this device for, more than anythin else, is web browsing.  For that I almost always use the Transformer without the keyboard.  This is something that a tablet is very useful for.  Furthermore, I'm not convinced that the 16:9 aspect ratio is that good in portrait mode.

The main gripes I have with the Transformer are:
  • Poor battery life.  Compared to the iPad, the TF101 just doesn't deliver.
  • Buggy Software.  Ice Cream Sandwitch has some nice features, unfortunately this doesn't make up for the buggy implementation Asus released.  On occasion the device gets stuck in a reboot loop, causing the battery to quickly expire.
  • Sluggish - While a factory reset or new upgrade (e.g. ICS) runs smoothly at first, the device soon starts to become sluggish.  Screen transitions and web browsing suffer especially from this.  Sadly I've seen the same deterioation in performance on my HTC Desire-Z so this could be an inherent issue with Android.
  • USB3 charging.  I don't know if the iPad has this issue, but USB3 charging means that I can't use my AA Battery based portable charger.  Not very good when I want to use the Transformer for entertainment on my next long haul flight.
  • Poor video codec support.  The iPad has the same issue so not fair to point fingers at Google.
All that being said, I'm still planning on taking the TF101 to Japan in August as my Dell Latitude was a little too heavy and took up too muh space in my carry on bag last time.
Question for the long term is: Will the iPad do what I need and can I live with iTunes?

I'm hoping to get a few feature comparisons and differences from Bytey who has used the same TF101 and now uses the iPad3 as his tablet PC.

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