ASUS has launched what it calls a PadPhone at the ongoing COMPUTEX 2011 convention in Taipei, Taiwan. The device involves a pair wherein an Android smartphone docks at the back of an Android tablet.
The ASUS smartphone has a 4 inch display and is expected to run Android 2.3 Gingerbread.
ASUS PadPhone’s Android tablet sports a 10 inch display capable of 1280×800 pixel resolution and runs Android 3.0 Honeycomb operating system. It has a special compartment at the back for docking the smartphone. When docked, the smartphone gets charged through the tablet’s larger battery.
The compartment’s lid has a small slot to expose the smartphone’s camera when it is docked. The tablet doesn’t have a camera at its back and is dependent on the smartphone for imaging. However, ASUS has put a front facing camera on the tablet.
When someone calls the smartphone, the user can remove it from the tablet’s hind or use a Bluetooth handsfree to respond. The smartphone shares the 3G data connection with the tablet, hence both can make use of the same SIM card for 3G connectivity.
Known for its ‘cost-effective and affordable’ philosophy, ASUS has clubbed the tablet and the smartphone together so that both devices can use a common 3G data connection. The devices are expected to sync seamlessly with each other because they both use Android OS.. Usually, tablets are capable of using a tethered 3G connection.
The concept is indeed interesting but has a couple of pitfalls too. For instance, the phone needs to be docked at the tablet’s back for using the camera, and for the incoming phone call one has to remove the smartphone from the tablet. ASUS hasn’t revealed detailed technical specifications of the devices though we can expect them in the coming months.