Transformer Duet: Asus unveils tablet/laptop that uses both Windows and Android at CES


Asus unveiled its Transformer Duet, a tablet/laptop that uses both Windows and Android, on Jan. 6 at CES in Las Vegas. (Asus)

New smartphones and a brand new 2-in-1 tablet dominated Asus’s announcements at International CES Monday, as the company added half a dozen products to its consumer electronics lineup.

The major pitch of the day was the Transformer Duet, a 2-in-1 tablet and laptop that also runs both Microsoft’s Windows and Google’s Android operating systems. Asus chairman Jonney Shih said that the 2-in-1 was an important innovation for Asus as it responds to the flagging PC market.

The $599 device has a switching button on its keyboard that allows users to go between the two operating systems. Switching from Windows to Android and back took about two or three seconds in a brief hands-on session after the conference, and Asus reps indicated it shouldn’t take too much longer even when programs are running.

The company also showed off a handful of new phones called Zenfones, in 4-, 5- and 6-inch sizes. The models will cost $99, $149 and $199, though the company didn’t make any mention of U.S. availability.

Some of the models have their own unique capabilities. The 5-inch phone, for example, allows users to operate the device even while wearing gloves; the 6-inch will recognize any pencil or normal pen as a stylus input.

Asus also unveiled an update to its Padfone line -- the Padfone mini, which has a 4-inch smartphone that docks into a 7-inch tablet if users want a bigger screen. The line is one of Asus’ most popular around the world, but has yet to see a U.S. release.

That will change in 2014, Shih said. The PadFone X, which combines a 5-inch smartphone with a 9-inch tablet dock, will be coming exclusively to AT&T sometime this year, the company said, though it still hasn’t released an exact date or price.

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Samsung unveils 105-inch curved-screen TV at CES

Hate cords? Try Prong

The top five tech themes to expect this week

Follow The Post’s new tech blog, The Switch, where technology and policy connect.

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.
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