With the rapid pace of the tablet market showing no signs of slowing, Asus CEO Jonney Shih pulled out the Transformer successor, apparently called the Transformer Prime, while on stage at the AsiaD Conference in Hong Kong today. The 8.3 mm thin tablet will be formally announced on November 9th, said Shih, and would feature NVIDIA's Kal-El quad-core SoC. The device has a 10" form factor like the original and while he did not specify whether it would be launching with Ice Cream Sandwich, he did say that we could expect Ice Cream Sandwich to show up in tablets before the end of the year. The tablet itself has USB and mini-HDMI ports, along with an SD card reader and a reported 14.5 hour battery. The new keyboard dock looks to aim for an even thinner duo than the original Transformer, and with those four (five) cores purring it should be a screamer. 

As if that weren't enough, Shih also teased an update on the Padfone, the tablet/phone pair first showed off in May at Computex. According to Shih, the device still has to undergo carrier testing and that they're targeting a Q1 2012 release, and it will be running Ice Cream Sandwich. As the Padfone must  serve as a competent, and battery sparing, phone, in addition to its tablet duties, it may be running on Tegra 2 and not Kal-El. We'll know for sure next Spring, for now enjoy a teaser video below. 

Gallery: ASUS Padfone

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  • sprockkets - Wednesday, October 19, 2011 - link

    Though maybe I'll just settle for a cheaper transformer haha.

    This is a tablet I've been waiting for.
    Reply
  • MonkeyPaw - Thursday, October 20, 2011 - link

    Check Microcenter. They are selling the 16GB version for $349, in store only though. Very tempting to me, but my NookColor running CM7 is holding its own so far. I might wait until the next round of tablets to make my upgrade. Reply
  • quiksilvr - Wednesday, October 19, 2011 - link

    I remember them saying the keyboard dock will work with future iterations, but this dock looks thinner. Will it still work? Reply
  • chillmelt - Thursday, October 20, 2011 - link

    This will be just in time or Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales. Plus, this is the reason why I didn't buy a Transformer + keyboard promo from Newegg for $399, or any tablet for that matter. Reply
  • Kamen75 - Thursday, October 20, 2011 - link

    The TF2 is giving me blue-balls it's so hot. Reply
  • DanD85 - Thursday, October 20, 2011 - link

    5th line first paragraph "didn't not". Sorry! Reply
  • JasonInofuentes - Thursday, October 20, 2011 - link

    Fixed. Thanks!

    Jason
    Reply
  • dcollins - Thursday, October 20, 2011 - link

    I don't have high expectations for Kal-El. I regularly extol the benefits of many cores on a PC, but I'm not sure 4 cores will have the same advantages on a tablet. You have less background services and run multiple applications less often. I am not convinced Kal-El will be able to compete with Krait's superior per-core performance.

    For now, I'm taking a wait-and-see approach. I hope I am wrong because I have great respect for nvidia, who are clearly pushing hard to innovate in a fiercely competitive market.
    Reply
  • nafhan - Thursday, October 20, 2011 - link

    I'm not going to complain about more cores, but I kind of agree.

    My opinion: better follow up to Tegra 2 might have been: add NEON, a faster GPU, and Kal-El's extra low power CPU. Basically, I think they should have made a dual core Kal-El.

    In favor of quad core, though: I know ARM9 CPU cores don't use a ton of transistors. So, the actual die size difference between a quad core and a dual core might be relatively small. Plus, marketing for a quad core practically writes itself...
    Reply
  • Lucian Armasu - Saturday, October 22, 2011 - link

    I doubt the dual core Krait will match it, definitely not in browsing performance, where Kal-el will use all cores. Plus, we'll see how Krait fares in performance. I know it's made fully LP which normally means better efficiency but slower performance. I am more excited about the Cortex A15 OMAP 5. I was hoping Nvidia will come up with a quad core Cortex A15 by then, but rumors say they'll continue to use Cortex A9 for a while, and might even skip Cortex A15 in favor of their own custom ARM design (like how Qualcomm is doing it). Reply

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