*The ASUS T100 Review has been provided by the resident Teen Geek; this then is what your average knows-more-than-you 16yr old thinks of the ASUS T100. We thought his opinion would be more relevant if you’re looking for a Christmas Gift that’ll cause on “OH!” of excitement rather than an “oh.” of disappointment…
The Asus Transformer book T100 is a pretty low costing, 10 inch windows 8 tablet that can also function as a laptop thanks to its keyboard! This isn’t a true laptop replacement, because it has a relatively low power Atom processor, but for £299 it is a great value, flexible device.
Now Asus has made a few windows tablets in the past, but this is the first I’ve had my hands on. I personally prefer Android operating systems, but I can see the practicality of the windows OS, allowing you to use this more like a laptop than a Netflix machine. Because its windows, you can get your whole office suite on this little thing, so great for commuters to finish off that document or presentation. Could even be useful for finishing off that bit of homework on the bus!
The Asus T100 uses a full laptop-style hinge. With the keyboard module attached, the T100 could easily pass for a small laptop. Unlike Asus’ more expensive Android powered transformer devices, the Asus Transformer Book T100 is not primarily made of metal. Some metal is used in the hinges inner workings to provide Longevity in the hinge, but this machine is largely made of plastic.
But that doesn’t mean they didn’t put effort into this design. The back of the tablet part is extremely glossy, the keyboard surround is faux brushed metal and the bottom of the keyboard is a soft-touch mat plastic. Three different finishes, should mean that there isn’t any design cohesion, but it just… works. The T100 is a smart looking thing. However it should be said that the glossy tablet rear doesn’t feel fantastic on the fingers. The T100 is solidly made, and the screen covering is Gorilla Glass – providing good anti-scratch protection and reassuring you, that even though it is a low cost tablet – they didn’t skimp on the design.
The keyboard module and tablet are around 550g each, and between 11-12mm thick. Separated from each other, neither is remarkable. There are thinner, lighter 10-inch tablets and nothing too notable about the keyboards design. Together, though, the magic happens, and they are pretty fantastic.
The keyboard doesn’t incorporate its own battery, but it DOES bring a USB 3.0, letting you plug in a mouse, external hard drive or other accessory. The tablet has a micro MDMI video output, a MicroSD memory card slot, headphone jack and MicroUSB port. It’s a simple setup but that keeps the tablet easy to operate. The MicroUSB is used for data transfer and charging, so you can use any standard android phone or tablet charger, and it’ll work just fine here (a 2A charger is needed for full speed charging, though).
The screen is a 10.1 inch screen of 1,366 x 7768 pixel resolution. In the world of tablets that’s a pretty low resolution – fewer pixels than the much smaller Google Nexus 7. As a result, text appears a little blocky at close quarters. Of course, this sort of pixel density remains the norm in the world of laptops. You still have to pay a lot of money to get a high resolution laptop and among tablets, Windows devices lag behind in resolution across the board. This is why I find it fairly easy to swallow in a sub-£300 10″ Windows tablet like this.
The Asus Transformer Book T100 feels like a necessary maturing of the budget Windows 8 tablet; it’s practical, pretty powerful, has a decent screen and its flexible design mitigates the lack of games and apps designed for windows 8 tablets compared to android and IOS tablets. It’s not one for your teen gamer, but at this price – it’s a very practical buy for the parents who like to keep their digital and cyber life synched. We recommend!