Asus Transformer Book Trio is tablet, laptop and desktop rolled into one

The combo device runs Android as a tablet, Windows as a desktop and a choice of the two in laptop mode

Asus Chairman Jonney Shih at Computex Monday

Asus Chairman Jonney Shih at Computex Monday

The company that brought us the PadFone, an all-in-one smartphone, tablet and laptop device, is thinking a bit bigger. Taiwan's Asustek Computer has now combined a tablet, smartphone and desktop PC into a single product that it calls the Transformer Book Trio.

Asus Chairman Jonney Shih introduced the product during Asus's news conference at the Computex Trade show in Taipei on Monday. "Ladies and gentleman," said Shih, who loves to put on a show for the Computex press corps, "I present the Transformer Book Trio, the world's first three-in-one notebook, tablet and desktop PC."

The Trio is an 11.6-inch Android tablet, with a 2GHz Intel Atom 2580 processor. Snap it into a keyboard and it becomes a laptop that can run both Android and Windows 8. Remove the tablet display, and the keyboard -- which has its own hard drive and Core i7 processor -- can be connected to a wireless monitor and used as a desktop PC.

The tablet and keyboard each have their own battery, CPU and operating system, so while using the keyboard as a PC, "you can give the tablet to your kids to go play with independently," Shih said.

The tablet has a 16:9 aspect ratio IPS display with 1920x1080 resolution and up to 64GB of storage, Shih said. Connected to the keyboard "dock station," which has its own 750GB hard drive, the device can "smoothly transition" between Android and Windows, he said.

"You can access 700,000 apps in the Google Play store and over 50,000 apps in the Windows store, and they all run natively on the device," Shih said. He didn't give a price or a shipping date, but most of the products unveiled at Computex are on sale in time for the end of year holiday season.

It's not clear how much demand there will be for the all-in-one product, but Asus is doing more than most companies to innovate around the PC and help it compete with tablets and smartphones, which many people are turning to for their computing.

At last year's Computex, Asus introduced the PadFone, an Android smartphone that can dock into the back of a 10.1-inch tablet PC, giving it up to 64 hours of extended battery life. The whole device can then be docked onto a keyboard to form a laptop-like contraption.

The Transformer Book Trio was one of a half dozen products Asus announced at Computex Monday. It also launched a 6-inch phablet called the Fonepad Note FHD6, and a 7-inch tablet called the Memo Pad FHD7 that will be priced at $149 in developed countries and $129 in emerging markets.

Shih is one of the more entertaining executives at Computex and enjoys playing the impresario and putting on a show. Each time he introduces a product, he takes time to walk across the stage, posing for photographs and saying, "Thank you, thank you, thank you."

"We try to see the world the way da Vinci saw it," he said at one point Monday, flashing a sketch of the 15th Century artist and inventor on the big screen behind him.

James Niccolai covers data centers and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow James on Twitter at @jniccolai. James's e-mail address is james_niccolai@idg.com

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags computexWindows desktopshardware systemsdesktop pcstabletsAsustek ComputerAndroid tablets

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

James Niccolai

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?