Laptop functionality comes second, albeit most manufacturers argue these devices are actually capable of replacing a traditional notebook in everyday use, and judging by the success of the Surface lines, many buyers agree.
In the last two weeks I’ve spent some time with a newcomer in the segment, an early sample of the Asus Transformer Pro T303UA, and I’m going to tell you what I think about it in this article.
It’s thin and fairly light, so is comfortable to hold and use, although if you’re used to an i Pad like I am you might find the extra weight taxing on your arms.
On the other hand, I find that grabbing this by the kickstand (as shown in the pictures) is great for one-hand tablet use and actually takes the air-grills completely out of the picture, as your hand won’t have to come in contact with them anymore if you hold the device this way.
In fact, all the other peripherals might get in the way as well, since they are all here on the right edge.
They’re also quite cramped together, but I was able to use all of them at the same time just fine.
I don’t own a Surface so I can’t compare the two mechanisms, so this is just my feeling and I could well be wrong about it. Still, I’ve read some other impressions claiming the kickstand on this laptop isn’t as well built or as stiff as the one on the Surface Pro 4. I might agree with the first part, based on this sample, but the hinges were stiff enough on my unit and never felt that the kickstand would give in in any position.
Aesthetically, the Transformer 3 Pro is available in two color options, called Icicle Gold and Titanium Gray. The tablet can be paired with 4 different folio options, the two above and some sort of beige and some sort of orange, that will definitely get some fancy names of their owns.
On other thing that differs on the Transformer in comparison to the Surface Pro is the fact that the exhaust grills are placed on the top side.
The build quality is solid, the magnesium shell feels nice to the touch and from what I can tell, should age nicely.
I do have some concerns about the kickstand, whose mechanism is quite complex, and I’m not sure how well it will face the test of time.
There’s a 13 MPx main shooter on the back, in case you want to take photos with a tablet (Don’t!
), as well as a 2 MP webcam and an IR camera on the front for logging in with Windows Hello.