Asus Makes Transforming Windows Tablets Way Less Chunky

By Sean Hollister on at

Asus popularised the cheap detachable laptop, but they've always been chunky little things. Not the Transformer Book Chi. Asus claims the new 10.1-inch T100 Chi is the thinnest Windows tablet ever made. And the 12.5-inch T300 Chi—combined with its keyboard—is now thinner than a MacBook Air.

Sure, thin isn't everything, and even the 7.2mm thick T100 Chi probably won't quite reach the same threshold of portability as Apple's 6.1mm-thick iPad Air 2. Still, I'm sure there are folks out there hankering for an ultra-thin Windows tablet with a tailor-made keyboard anyways.

And those people (you?) will actually have three choices this time around: the T90, the T100, or the T300. The $300 (£197) T90 and $400 (£262) T100 are both budget machines with quad-core Intel Atom Bay Trail processors and either 32GB or 64GB of solid state storage, but the T100 features a 10.1-inch, 1080p IPS screen compared to the smaller, lower-res 8.9-inch, 1280 x 800 one you'll find on the T90. The T90 does weigh a little less, though.

Asus Makes Transforming Windows Tablets Way Less Chunky

The Transformer Book Chi T90

If you're looking for something with processing power and screen real estate closer to a standard laptop, the T300 Chi starts at $700 (£459) for a 12.5-inch 1080p screen, or $800 (£524) for a 2560 x 1440 screen, powered by an Intel Core M processor in a fanless design with a 128GB SSD. It also features a new neodymium magnetic hinge to attach the screen.

Unfortunately, none of the machines have room for a full size USB port, using a miniature USB 3.0 socket instead to help you transfer files. Asus is also promising "virtually all-day battery life" from the new machines.

Asus Makes Transforming Windows Tablets Way Less Chunky

Asus says we should expect the Transformer Book Chi to start hitting shelves in February.


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