Asus' Transformer Infinity Pad tablet to ship in a month

The highly anticipated Asus tablet is considered a challenger to the iPad

Asus' highly anticipated Transformer Pad Infinity TF700T tablet, a challenger to Apple's new iPad, will become available in late June or early July, a company spokeswoman said on Wednesday.

The tablet has a 10.1-inch display that shows images at 1920-by-1200 pixels, which is among the highest resolution screens offered on Android tablets today. The tablet will come with the Android 4.0 OS and optional 3G/4G mobile broadband connectivity.

With its powerful processor and high-resolution screen, the Infinity Pad is being pitched as a multimedia powerhouse. The tablet will come with a quad-core Nvidia Tegra 3 chip for models focused on gaming and multimedia or a dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 chip for models with 3G/4G LTE connectivity.

The company spokeswoman did not immediately comment on pricing on the tablet, which was introduced in late February at the Mobile World Congress show in Barcelona. Asus will likely share further availability and pricing information at the Computex trade show in Taiwan next week. Asus is holding a press conference at the show where the company also plans to announce products.

The Infinity Pad's most appealing feature is the display, but the resolution falls short of Apple's new iPad, which has a 9.7-inch screen that can show images at a 2048 by 1536 pixel resolution. Many of the latest Android tablets with 10.1-inch screens come with 1280 by 800 pixel resolution, including Asus' $349 Transformer Pad 300 and Samsung's Galaxy Tab 2 10.1, which started shipping this month.

Asus' Infinity Pad screen has a wide 178 degree viewing angle, which makes the tablet easier to view from different angles. The screen is also durable and scratch resistant thanks to Corning's Gorilla Glass 2 technology, which will make the screen tougher and thinner.

The tablet has an 8-megapixel camera on the back with LED flash, and a 2-megapixel front camera. By comparison, Apple's iPad has a 5-megapixel back camera and a VGA camera on the front.

The tablet offers 10 hours of battery life, but that can be extended to 16 hours with an optional keyboard dock. The dock has an extended battery built in and also makes the tablet a thin-and-light laptop with a full QWERTY keyboard. The tablet weights 586 grams, which goes up to 1.1 kilograms with the dock.

The tablet offers up to 64GB of storage, and has a micro-SD card reader and a USB port. The tablet can be hooked up to a big-screen TV through an HDMI (high-definition multimedia interface) port.

It is unclear what Transformer Infinity Pad models will ship first. However, Qualcomm recently revealed supply issues plaguing the S4 chips on the 28-nanometer manufacturing process, which could delay the launch of a 3G/4G version of the tablet.

Agam Shah covers PCs, tablets, servers, chips and semiconductors for IDG News Service. Follow Agam on Twitter at @agamsh. Agam's e-mail address is agam_shah@idg.com

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Agam Shah

IDG News Service
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