UK Retailer Revolt Gives Asus a Transformer Prime-Shaped Headache (Updated)

By Sam Gibbs on at

Looks like Asus is in for more trouble over the much-heralded but issue plagued Transformer Prime, as at least one retailer has pulled the device from sale over hardware fault complaints from customers.

Following up on poor stock levels and faltering sales, Clove said in a blog post that it had decided that the Prime units currently available were just a bit crap and not up to standard. It’s pulled the tablet from sale and cancelled all orders until further notice:

“We are at this time not satisfied that all units we could provide you with are working correctly, and performing to the standard we expect of the unit.”

It might be just one retailer so far, but Asus isn’t having a happy time of it with the Transformer Prime, what with GPS issues; wrong footing with a locked bootloader; problems getting functioning stock out, and now a retail revolt. Perhaps Asus should take a bit of time to get it right before shipping out more units. Then again, we really want to love the Transformer Prime, but things move on swiftly and something new and shiny is always just round the corner to grab our fickle hearts. [Clove]

Update: We've had an official response from Asus on the issue of Transformer Prime product quality, and unsurprisingly, it's unaware of any faults in its flagship tablet short of the GPS issues:

"ASUS is not aware of any quality issues with the Transformer Prime. We have already issued a statement regarding the GPS module, and provided a number of options to our customers. We have conducted extensive testing on the Transformer Prime in laboratory conditions and the device is performing as expected in all areas and to all of our required parameters. ASUS prides itself on the rigorous testing of all products to ensure the highest quality possible. We refute any and all claims from third parties regarding the quality of our products. Stock availability to-date has been constrained due to massive demand for the Transformer Prime. Large quantities of stock is arriving on a weekly basis and we expect to see increased availability within the UK shortly."

So there you have it, according to Asus, Clove is talking rubbish. Whether or not the Transformer Prime is actually landing on our shores with faults, it’s not good news that a retailer has decided to pull its stock off its virtual shelves. Let’s just hope it was a bad batch (or Clove really is talking trash), and that we can get on and love the Transformer Prime like we should.

Update 2: Looks like Clove might have been telling porkies. According to Asus:

The following statements are factually incorrect.

- “we took the decision to thoroughly test stock before fulfilling any orders."

- Clove said that it received a "reasonable stock allocation"

This allocation has not been delivered to Clove in case there is any confusion over ‘allocation’

- "We did some random testing on the stock”

To-date, Clove has received one unit of Transformer Prime from distribution.

One unit? Doesn't sound like a thorough test to me.