2012-09-09

Asus Transformer Prime Revisited or Bashing The Prime

I should keep my promises... I haven't found any time to do any blogging, or I was too lazy. Who knows... Anyways this is my retaliation. As promised Asus transformer review revisited! If you haven't seen last review - look here.

The Bad


WiFi... I've mentioned that WiFi is not the strongest point of this tablet. It's still true. Range wise it's OK...ish. But the main problem with it is speed. Downloading larger files suffers from quite a speed loss. I can't tell the exact figures since it depends on place and WiFi spot, but I've ran into situations where cheap eee net-book downloads up to 4x times faster. For regular usage it's fine, just for larger files you will feel lack of speed.

Battery life is amazing. I love it. Problems appear when you ran out of battery. There is two stages of battery death. When it does not turn on, but displays an empty battery if trying. And another stage is when it does nothing at all. On first stage it takes somewhere up to 15 mins of charging time till you'll be able to turn it on. On second stage it takes up to half an hour of charging. It sometimes becomes really annoying. For example if you're not using tablet for few days or a week and just want to watch a movie in little time you got.

It's bit on the heavy side. While reading a book or playing a game it may become a bit uncomfortable. It's not a big deal but...

The Ugly

Brushed aluminium finish does look good, and I can't see any scratches on it. Fingerprints don't shine on it ether (the screen is still a magnet for them). However it gathers fat from finger prints and then dusts so that might look a bit ugly. It's still quite easy to clean it though, but it's not as easy to maintain shiny as some plastics.
OK i'm nitpicking here, but my point is that it looks really good only if it's clean therefore it requires regular cleaning of all surfaces.

Opening keyboard a bit too wide and pushing on it a bit makes a gap in the keyboard dock back side. I does not break just makes a little gap that is closed easily with little push. It's just a tiny bit annoying.

Although I was worried about audio jack connection, it turned out fine. However micro-HDMI connection turned out to be fiddly. It will loose connection from time to time if you're moving tablet. So it might not be the best option for presentations if you want to have tablet in your hands and connected via micro-HDMI. I have to point out that it won't happen randomly, so for connecting to TV and watching movies/YouTube there are no problems.

The Weird

Physical keyboard is only good in so few languages. If your native language is English or one of few supported that it's fine for you, but for me it sucks. I can't reply to the most of the emails, I get uncomfortable when using IRC or other chatting programs... The only option is to use non standard on-screen keyboard. It does work, but leaving out physical keyboard in spots where it would be most useful is a bummer to say the least. Sure I could write using only standard characters, but I feel like a retard by doing that.
It is possible to solve this issue with external apps apparently.  Also incoming Jelly Bean update might contain cure for this issue.

If I'm trying to watch a better quality movie on my TV via HDMI connection... First of all most of such movies won't be playable by default player. Sure it's a minor complain since there is so much to choose from. However most players stops playing those movies after 3-15 mins randomly. It's due to software decoders as far as I know and only few support hardware decoders well enough to be usable. So I ended up using BSPlayer. So don't rush to purchase any of the player apps and test those before buying if you need one.

Round up

These are the main bad point I've seen so far. I still think it's awesome tablet and worth it's price, just it's not as perfect as someone may portray it. Sure new model is already out there, but if you get chance to get this one for cheap, I would say it's a good deal.