ASUS Padfone 2 Android phone (preview)
ASUS is back for round two with the thinner, lighter and faster Padfone 2
- Thinner and lighter than predecessor
- Significantly upgraded internals
- 13-megapixel camera
- Not compatible with original Padfone dock
- Padfone Station screen resolution
- No word on AU release or price
The ASUS Padfone 2 is thinner, lighter and faster than the original Padfone and has significantly upgraded internals. There's no word yet on an Australian release date or pricing, so watch this space.
The original ASUS Padfone, an Android phone that docked into a tablet shell, was certainly an interesting idea. However, it was unfortunately held back by a chunky and heavy design and too many disappointing bugs. ASUS is back for round two with the aptly-named Padfone 2, a thinner, lighter and faster upgrade over the original Padfone.
The ASUS Padfone 2 is an upgrade in every sense or the word but it's the downgrade in size that's the biggest advancement here. The Padfone 2 package now weighs a competitive 649g all up (Padfone 2 docked into Padfone 2 Station) compared to the hefty 853g weight of its predecessor. ASUS repeatedly stressed that the PadFone 2 is lighter than Apple's new iPad, so the docked package is certainly comparable in weight to the best tablets on the market.
ASUS deserves plenty of credit for the design of both the Padfone 2 and the new Padfone 2 Station. The Padfone 2 has a larger 4.7in screen (up from the 4.3in display of its predecessor) yet is only 6g heavier at 135g. It's also thinner (9mm) than its predecessor and the tear-drop design means the phone is only 3.3mm at its thinnest point.
The Padfone 2 Station has an improved design, too. The bulging Padfone door latch on the previous model is gone, replaced by a simple slot that the phone slides into. That results in a thinner and lighter tablet module that weighs only 514g. Curiously, however, ASUS hasn't listed the official dimensions of the Padfone 2 Station.
The bulk-reduction design changes on the Padfone 2 Station have come at a cost. The built-in battery, which charges the PadFone 2 when it is docked, has been downgraded from 6600mAh to 5000mAh. Further, owners of the original Padfone will be disappointed to learn that the Padfone 2 won't work with the old Padfone Station. If you're upgrading you'll need to purchase the new dock, too.
One thing that hasn't changed on the Padfone 2 Station is the display, a 10.1in panel with a resolution of 1280x800. This unfortunately doesn't match up too well with competing higher resolution panels of tablets like the new iPad, the upcoming Acer Iconia Tab A700 and even ASUS' own Transformer Pad Infinity.
ASUS hasn't only focussed on the physical design of the Padfone 2 as the specifications have been significantly upgraded, too. The 4.7in IPS+ display now has a 720p resolution of 1280x720 and is among the first smartphones to use Sharp's IZGO display technology. ASUS says the screen has a brightness of 500nits.
The Padfone 2 is also equipped with a 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon S4 processor and has a hefty 2GB of RAM, while the battery has been increased in size from 1520mAh to 2140mAh. The other significant upgrade is the rear-camera, which now uses a 13-megapixel lens manufactured by Sony. According to ASUS, the backside-illuminated camera can record 720p high-speed video at 60fps and can capture 100 consecutive photos at 6fps.
ASUS doesn't appear to be selling the PadFone Stylus Headset and Padfone Keyboard Dock accessories with the Padfone 2. The capacitive stylus accessory for the original Padfone doubled as a Bluetooth headset thanks to an answer button, a speaker and a microphone, while the physical keyboard dock turned the Padfone into a netbook-style device and had a built-in battery.
The ASUS Padfone 2 will initially ship with the 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich version of Google's Android operating system, though ASUS says it will be upgradeable to the 4.1 Jelly Bean in the coming months.
ASUS will launch the Padfone 2 "before the end of 2012" in Europe and Asia, but there's been no word on an Australian release. Thankfully, LTE 1800MHz compatibility is listed in the official ASUS specifications, so the Padfone 2 is likely to work on the 4G networks used by Telstra and Optus once it launches Down Under.
In Europe, the 32GB Padfone 2 will sell for €799, with the 64GB model retailing at €899.
Join the newsletter!
Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 14
SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-55EZ950U
WD MY PASSPORT™ Gaming Storage
Dyson Supersonic™ Hair Dryer Fuchsia/Iron
Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-77EZ1000U
Nespresso Creatista Coffee Machine
Apple iPhone X
WD MY PASSPORT™ X Gaming Storage
Toys for Boys
Onyx Smart Walkie Talkie
UBTech First Order Stormtrooper Robot
Google Daydream View VR Headset
Bose SoundLink Micro
Ubiquiti Network’s Front Row Camera
Leica M10 Digital Rangefinder Camera
LaCie Rugged USB-C Portable Hard Drive
Lego Mindstorms EV3
Propel Star Wars T-65 X-Wing Drone
Toffee Bags Commuter Satchel
PETKIG Go Smart Dog Leash
Xbox One X
Amazon Echo Bluetooth Speaker
Belkin Pocket Power 10,000mAh
Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K
Nest Protect Smart Smoke Alarm
Dearear Endear In-ear Wireless Earphones
Panasonic Hi-Fi - SC-UA7GS-K
WD MY CLOUD™ HOME Personal Cloud Storage
iRobot Roomba 980 Vaccum Cleaning Robot
Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse
Kogan Bluetooth Soundbar
3SIXT 3-in-1 Smartphone Lens Kit
Panasonic Portable Splashproof Fun - RF-D20U
Logitech Doodle Collection Wireless Mouse
Ikea NORDMÄRKE Wireless Charging Pad
Tile Pro Bluetooth Tracker
Lexon Flip Alarm Clock
Fallout Geeki Tikis
Urbanworx Full HD Action Camera
Raspberry Pi Starter Kit
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Mate 10 Pro Review: A solid winter flagship that cribs from the best
- 2 Google Pixel 2 review: not quite 'pixel perfect' but damn close
- 3 Google Home Mini review: a welcome addition to the smart speaker family.
- 4 Huawei Nova 2i review: Flagship features get smuggled into the mid-tier
- 5 Moto X4 review: This is what a world without MotoMods looks like
Latest News Articles
- Sony Commences Android 8.0 Oreo Rollout in New Zealand Starting With Flagship Xperia XZ Premium Smartphone Device
- Qualcomm adds security, battery life features to phone chips
- Cygnett’s new wireless charging range has arrived
- Belkin Introduces USB-C 3.1 Express Dock HD
- Porsche Design Huawei Mate 10 Will Come To Australia
PCW Evaluation Team
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
- LG V30+ review: The videographer's smartphone arrives
- Fitbit Ionic review: Impressive but not quite iconic
- Xbox One X review: Brave new world
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
Product Launch Showcase
- TPSenior Project ManagerNSW
- FTSenior Business AnalystOther
- FTiOS DeveloperWA
- TPTransition ManagerVIC
- TPSharepoint DeveloperQLD
- FTSAP SD ConsultantNSW
- FTSenior Solution ArchitectOther
- CCWeb Writers/EditorsVIC
- FTCyber Security Analyst | 6 mthOther
- FTSolution Architect - Feasibility/ImpactSA
- FTLevel 2 Mobile ICT AdministratorACT
- CCTechnical Lead - BrisbaneNSW
- TPCommunications & Change AnalystQLD
- FTAX Dynamics 365 Solution/ Technical Architect/ Develope/ConsultOther
- TPSystems Engineer - Dell EMCWA
- CCKofax DeveloperVIC
- FTStorage EngineerACT
- TPTechnical Consultant - SOE, SCCMNSW
- FTPart-time Project Administrator (Agile) - TelecommunicationsOther
- CCProject ManagerNSW
- FTProject Engineer, Operational Infrastructure & TelcoOther
- FTCustomer Service OperatorOther
- CCSenior MySQL Database Administrator - SydneyQLD
- FTSenior iOS DeveloperQLD
- CCBusiness Intelligence SpecialistNSW