Light on wallet, not on performance

Mar 13 2014, 03:32 IST
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SummaryThe T100 is an ultraportable workhorse

Though a known name among tech enthusiasts, Asus is yet not that popular among general consumers in India. To shed that image, the company has gone into an overdrive, releasing a slew of pocket-friendly but extremely good looking devices. Right from its range of budget-to-premium laptops like the Vivobook, Zenbook and Taichi to its Transformer range of tablets, the company is not keeping any stones unturned to fill every price segment in the market.

The Transformer range of tablets is an initiative on the company’s part to bridge the gap between a tablet, netbook and a laptop. The Transformer Book T100 is a Windows 8.1 convertible tablet. This is a new segment that is quickly gaining traction and is expected to become a separate vertical in the tablet segment.

Once unpacked, the T100 does not make heads turn with its glossy back. The deep bluish-black tablet is light at just over 550 grams and compact to hold, however it has a plasticky feel. The device has a 10.1-inch screen, which is a fingerprint magnet. With a HD display measuring 1366 x 768 pixels, I felt the display quality was a bit below satisfaction. Colours did not look vibrant enough. Viewing angles were good though, thanks to the IPS display.

But where the tablet scores is the detachable keyboard that comes along. It is not a full sized keyboard with the weight same as the tablet itself, and lacks light indicators of any kind. Attached with a USB port, the keys could feel too small for someone with thicker fingers and the small built-in touchpad isn’t very responsive. Considering that the T100 is a tablet that has been priced attractively, including a keyboard is still a very smart move, and will definitely help Asus stand in better stead compared to the Acer Iconia and Dell Venue tablets, both of which lack keyboards.

Powered by an Intel Atom quad-core processor, the T100 is extremely fast. Whether its multitasking between apps, documents, browser or quickly switching from the Metro user interface to the desktop mode, the tablet responds well.

The T100 comes loaded with the Windows Home and Student Edition, which should definitely please professionals who want a lighter device to work on their documents, spreadsheets or presentations. However, one has to purchase the license separately from the Microsoft store, which was a let down. The Acer Iconia W4-820, a competitor to this device, had an active

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