segunda-feira, 3 de junho de 2013

New ASUS Transformer Pad Infinity Announced At Computex 2013: 1600p Display and NVIDIA Tegra 4 on board

ASUS is announcing a wide variety of mobile devices at its Computex 2013 event, - innovative and quirky alike - together with its latest flagship 10-inch tablet, a refreshed version of the Transformer Pad Infinity. While it doesn't, so far, appear to bring any big change to the Transformer Pad line, and in fact is more of a refresh, as the new Transformer Pad Infinity brings with it a very competitive high-resolution display and what must be the fastest mobile SoC yet.

The new Infinity uses the same kind of display as the last-gen Infinity, that is, a bright Super IPS+ display, however, the new Infinity receives a significant bump in terms of resolution, as it has a resolution of 2560 x 1600 (vs the 1920 x 1200 of the "old" Infinity), and a pixel density of 299ppi (vs 224ppi in the old Infinity), which beats the 264ppi of the iPad 4 and is on par with the Nexus 10's display. There's no data to back this up right now, but based on previous Transformers with the same Super IPS+ display, the display will probably have the same excellent blacks, and also unsurpassed screen brightness which characterizes the Super IPS+ display, which results in very good contrast from these displays. However, ASUS' tablet displays tend to reproduce rather washed out colors. We can't be sure these characteristics of ASUS tablet displays will also be present on the new Infinity, but it's definitely a possibility. Like the old Infinity, the new version will also have its display protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 2.

It's clear now how tablet cameras are really not that important, since ASUS actually downgraded the camera from the old Infinity to the new one (8MP vs 5MP), hence (almost) all modern tablets have 5MP cameras, which only shows how tablets, especially 10-inch ones, aren't adequate for taking pictures and videos.

One very interesting aspect of the new Transformer Pad Infinity is its internals. In fact, it is one of the first devices to use NVIDIA's powerful Tegra 4 System-on-Chip. Basically, it is an SoC built on power efficient 28nm process, which supports an optional Icera 3G/4G modem (hence, we may see an LTE variant of the Infinity). The SoC itself consists of four powerful Cortex A15 cores ticking at 1.9GHz, with an additional low frequency Cortex A15 core for handling light workloads with very little power consumption, with a 2 GB of RAM memory and a memory interface of 32-bit dual-channel DDR3-1899 (17.1 GB/s) and a whopping 72-core GPU. Thanks to the powerful GPU and outstanding memory bandwidth, the Infinity will fare very well with complex 3D games despite its mind blowing resolution.

Last but not least, the new Transformer Pad Infinity, much like every Transformer device preceding it, will have an optional keyboard dock that essentially turns the device into an Android Ultrabook, plus enhances connectivity and battery life. In fact, Pad + Dock combined will have a total battery capacity of 18,000 mAh; much more than the iPad 4's 11,000 (ish) mAh battery.

The Transformer Pad Infinity will be released in the coming months (no specific dates were given though), and so far is confirmed to ship with 32 GB of storage (a 64 GB version is likely to be released too). Pricing is still unknown but the 32 GB version will probably cost $499, corresponding to the last gen Infinity and competitive with other tablets. On paper, the ASUS Transformer Pad Infinity looks like it will place itself ahead of the current top tablets (specifically, the iPad 4 and the Google Nexus 10), or will at least be on par with them, in terms of display, design, performance, etc.

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