Android Central

This morning at events in Milan, Italy and Taipei, Taiwan, ASUS has announced its second-generation phone and tablet hybrid device, the Padfone 2. Like the original Padfone, it’s an Android phone which can slot into a tablet dock to deliver a full-blown tablet experience. Time time around, ASUS has boosted specs throughout the device, including an upgrade of the CPU to a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 chip. The device also packs 2GB of RAM, a 13MP camera and a 4.7-inch, 720p IPS display, matching the specs of leading Android phones like the LG Optimus G.

Unlike the first-generation Padfone, the Padfone 2 fits inside its tablet dock without needing to be secured in place with a door. What’s more, the weight of the entire package has been reduced to 649 grams, down from 853 grams in the original. On-stage in Milan today, ASUS Chairman Jonney Shih demonstrated the same seamless transition from phone to tablet UI, just as we saw from the original Padfone at Mobile World Congress.

On the software side, it’s running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, with an upgrade to Jelly Bean promised in the future. Connectivity options include NFC and 4G LTE support, though no carriers were mentioned at today’s events.

The device will ship in Europe and Asia before the end of the year, in 32 and 64GB flavors, which will retail for €799 and €899 respectively with the tablet dock included. At this price, the new Padfone remains a niche product, but ASUS will be hoping that a focus on hardware specifications and a slimmed-down tablet chassis will help the Padfone 2 succeed where its predecessor stumbled.

Anyone tempted by ASUS’s latest Padfone iteration? Shout out in the comments! We've got more images after the break.

Live Life Intuitively with ASUS PadFone™ 2
The latest Smartphone technology features incredible battery life and a thinner, lighter 
PadFone™ 2 Station to deliver the ultimate mobile flexibility.

Milan, Italy (October 16, 2012) — ASUS, a global leader in the new digital era, today announces the PadFone™ 2. Building upon the successful PadFone combination of an Android smartphone and dockable tablet for incredible mobile flexibility, PadFone 2 features the latest quad-core smartphone technology and a completely redesigned tablet.
ASUS Chairman Jonney Shih unveiled the PadFone 2 at a world-wide press conference in Milan, Italy. “Our relentless drive to innovate through Design Thinking has empowered us to create PadFone 2. It’s beautiful, it’s fast, it’s seamless and, best of all, it’s intuitive,” said Mr. Shih.
PadFone 2 is a fully featured 4.7” Android™ smartphone with industry-leading specifications that docks with the unique PadFone 2 Station to become a lightweight, but fully featured, 10.1” tablet. Apps are seamlessly optimized on-the-fly to support both tablet and phone modes, with an instant transition between smartphone and tablet screen sizes.

Portability with Power to Spare
ASUS’ world-renowned Design Thinking philosophy has significantly reduced PadFone 2 Station’s thickness and weight. At just 649g, the combined weight of both PadFone 2 and PadFone 2 Station is now lighter than most tablets on the market, and the dock mechanism has been redesigned to require just one easy dock or undock action. PadFone 2 has also been subtly refined to increase its screen size to 4.7”, while reducing its maximum thickness to 9mm and weight to just 135g.
Battery life is astounding, too. The higher-capacity PadFone 2 2140mAh battery provides up to 16 hours 3G talk-time and 13 hours Wi-Fi web browsing, while PadFone 2 Station’s 5000mAh battery provides up to 36 hours of 3G talk-time. PadFone 2 Station’s internal battery also has enough capacity to fully recharge the docked PadFone 2 up to three times.

Smartphone, Smarter Performance
A 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 quad-core processor with 2GB of RAM ensures incredible PadFone 2 performance in both smartphone and tablet modes. The new 4.7” 1280 x 720 HD Super IPS+ display uses scratch-resistant Corning® Fit Glass and delivers sharp, detailed images with accurate colors, ultra-wide viewing angles and 550 nits brightness for stunning outdoor visibility.
A new 13-megapixel high-performance camera captures incredibly detailed images with no shutter lag. Burst mode can capture up to 100 shots at a blisteringly quick six shots per second, while simultaneously recording 1080p HD video at 30fps, or 720p HD video at 60fps. Low-light performance is also enhanced by the wide f/2.4 aperture and a dedicated image signal processor. Both PadFone 2 and PadFone 2 Station feature superlative sound quality too, thanks to ASUS SonicMaster technology and audio tuning by Waves, recipient of a Technical GRAMMY Award® for audio design.

Easy to Share, Easy to Save
With capacities up to 64GB and 50GB of ASUS WebStorage provided free for two years, PadFone 2 offers endless possibilities for storing data. Data syncing between devices is also a thing of the past, since PadFone 2 storage is used by PadFone 2 Station when the two are connected. Shared mobile data connectivity between smartphone and tablet also means just one data plan is needed for both devices, while support for up to 42Mbit/s DC-HSPA+ and 100Mbit/s LTE delivers super-fast web browsing and downloads.

User-friendly enhancements
PadFone 2 also features a new version of the SuperNote app that instantly converts handwritten notes made in multiple languages into editable text. Its Instant Translation tool also translates any word, phrase or sentence in an email, web page or app at a touch, without the need for a third-party translation tool.

Availability
PadFone 2 will be launched before the end of 2012 in Europe (Bulgaria, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden) and Asia (Hong Kong, India, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, U.A.E). Availability in other countries will be announced at a later date.


PADFONE 2 SPECIFICATIONS
Networks
WCDMA 900/2100MHz
EDGE/GPRS/GSM 850/900/1800/1900MHz
LTE 800/1800/2600MHz
HSPA+ (DL: 21Mbit/s, 42Mbit/s (optional) / UL: 5.76Mbit/s)
LTE (DL: 100Mbit/s / UL: 50Mbit/s)
Operating system
Android 4.04 ICS (upgradeable to Jelly Bean shortly)
Processor
Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 (8064 + 9215m) quad-core Cortex A15 class (1.5GHz) with Adreno 320 graphics
Storage / memory
16GB / 32GB / 64GB eMMC Flash / 2GB LPDDR2 RAM
Color
Black / White
Connectivity
802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi with Wi-Fi Direct, Bluetooth 4.0 & NFC (mobile payment function is optional and by specific regions only)
3.5mm audio jack, Micro SIM
ASUS 13-pin dock connector (supports Micro-USB 2.0 & Mobile High-Definition Link for HDMI connection)
GPS
A-GPS & GLONASS
Display
4.7“ (1280 x 720) / 312ppi
Super IPS+ (550 nits)
Scratch-resistant Corning® Fit Glass with HCLR Film (anti-fingerprint coating)
Main camera
13MP BSI Sensor Sony Camera, f/2.4 Aperture,
five-element lens, auto focus with LED flash
Front camera
1.2MP
Other
G-sensor, proximity sensor, ambient light sensor, gyro sensor, e-compass
Battery
2140mAh Li-Polymer (non-removable)
Talk time
Up to 16 hours with 3G (LTE under qualification testing)
Standby time
Up to 352 hours with 3G (LTE under qualification testing)
Browser
HTTP / Google browser / YouTube browser / Facebook / Google+
Messaging
SMS / MMS / email / IM
Video
Video Playback: MPEG4/H.264/H.263/WMV @ HD 1080p
Video Recording: MPEG4/H.263 @ HD 1080p / 60fps @ 720p
H.264 Video Decode @ 720p / Video Encode @1080p
H.264 / Ogg / Theora / MPEG4 / WMV / 3GP
Picture
JPEG / PNG / GIF / BMP
Audio
MP3 / WMA / 3GP / AAC / AAC+
Dimension
137.9 x 69 x 9mm
Weight
135g

PADFONE 2 STATION SPECIFICATIONS
Color
Black / White
Display
10.1“ (1280 x 800, WXGA), 149ppi
IPS with capacitive multi-touch
Scratch-resistant Corning® Fit Glass with HCLR Film (anti-fingerprint coating)
Camera
1MP front camera
13MP via PadFone 2 rear camera
Battery
19Wh (5000mAh)
Connectivity
3.5mm audio jack via PadFone 2
ASUS 13-pin dock connector (Micro-USB 2.0 Host)
External phone antenna
Wi-Fi & BT, GSM, WCDMA, & LTE receiver diversity
Audio
High-quality speaker with ASUS SonicMaster technology

All specifications are subject to change without notice and may differ from country to country. Actual performance may vary depending on applications, usage, environment and other factors. Content and product availability varies by country and coverage areas, and is subject to change. Brand and product names mentioned are trademarks of their respective companies.


About ASUS
ASUS, the world’s top 3 consumer notebook vendor and the maker of the world’s best-selling and most award winning motherboards, is a leading enterprise in the new digital era. ASUS designs and manufactures products that perfectly meet the needs of today’s digital home, office and person, with a broad portfolio that includes motherboards, graphics cards, optical drives, displays, desktops, Eee Box and all-in-one PCs, notebooks, netbooks, tablet devices, servers, multimedia and wireless solutions, networking devices, and mobile phones. Driven by innovation and committed to quality, ASUS won 3,886 awards in 2011, and is widely credited with revolutionizing the PC industry with the Eee PC™. With a global staff of more than 11,000 and a world-class R&D team of 3,100 engineers, the company’s revenue for 2011 was around US$11.9 billion.

 
There are 42 comments

PaperMate3rd says:

Never been first before......weird lol stayed up to watch the live stream. This is why I wish Asus made the new nexus phone they are just at the top of there game right now. 64 gig option great battery great screen the whole 9 even if you minus the pad station this is amongst the best android phones out. (I'd take it over the s3 in a heartbeat) and the station comes with the phone at full price. Great deal good updates why would google not want to use them for the phone i just don't get it. Sadly im on sprint here in the states I doubt we'll ever see it. Come on softbank lol. If it's penta band i may just have to drop the dough though.

15israellai says:

You're right, I'm tempted...
WANT but no money.

turb0wned says:

Yet another phone better than that LG crap!

PlanetJumble says:

There is good (weight, design, power, features), bad (price, tablet resolution, capacitive buttons, no sd card) and ugly (no keyboard). Also it should have been announced running Jelly Bean right away, ICS just smells dated at this moment.

All in all, I could find myself getting one, if I stumble upon a good offer. 32GB does make up for missing SD card, and I am not too happy with my SGS3 currently.

arjen82 says:

Price is steep; but you are getting a phone and a tablet in one...

Hard choice, HTC ONE X+ or the ASUS Padfone...

Need some reviews!

sndplace says:

Well I will say that Asus makes great products and I love this Padfone And the idea. Wish someone would make a universal tablet dock for other phones, that will drive this down in price. And price is the thing here. 1 without a carrier this thing won't go nowhere. Tablets are struggling to sell at $500 so for both at around $1000? and you need both because then it wouldn't make sense to buy just the phone.

Asus also has software issues. From what I read around Briefly. If this came to a Big carrier here. on contract $399-$499 for both it will do good IMO.

eahinrichsen says:

I doubt this will see US carriers. The carriers make so much money selling individual phones and tablets, and attaching separate data plans to both or having both as separate devices in a pooled plan that selling this device would basically be shooting themselves in the foot.

blessedred says:

Did the original Padfone come to the US?

ungibbed says:

This just dropped upgrading to a galaxy S3 off my list if it hits the US. I don't see the 1700 MHz band for T-Mobile AWS, but with a monster like this and the 1900 MHz refit for iPhone and others, I'd buy this monster for retail!

I love ASUS tablets and this phone just sounds like a beast!

patburk says:

Hey I'm on TMobile in the US too. I typically buy unlocked (Sim Free) phones that work on that network. My galaxy note 1 gets edge data until the cell towers are retrofitted to make unlocked iPhones work....but Im on wi-fi most of the day.
can you tell me? I dont know much about these specs, but you might be able to tell me...would it work on TMobile?
thanks

IceDree says:

Its a nice concept, but with that price you can get a phone AND a tablet !

One question though, why no one complained about Jelly Bean ??? Why ASUS gets a pass ???
Just saying ... personally it doesn't effect me, just asking

mssca says:

Yep... JB is an issue for me.... I have no idea why companies takes so long to test the new versions of Android. Specially when this phone is not even out yet, I think it should have JB on delivery.

HeatherDawn says:

What gets me is that their other tablets already have JB. Why they release a NEW tablet with ICS is beyond me. I'm sure the update isn't too far away, but still...

blessedred says:

It's probably going to have the update to Jellybean in the week or some after it comes anyway just calm down. Asus are very fast with their updates because they don't play. I think a human being can wait a few weeks for what they want.. Honestly the only true thing that will be completely different is Google Now because project butter isn't gooing to have a humongous difference on a phone like this because it's already a speed demon.

plunder says:

They seem to have fixed most (perhaps all) of the limiting factors in the original design. I use a TF300T now and really like it, so the tablet side of this looks very promising. Add to that the high quality look and features of the phone and you have a really powerful solution. I wonder when this unit will reach the UK?

One of the big upsides of the Transformer series is the keyboard. The first Padfone had that option, I wonder if they will make one for the Padfone2?

jean15paul says:

"We've got more images after the break." - LIES!

return_0 says:

Don't worry… you can find images here:

http://www.asus.com/Mobile/PadFone2/

JobiWan144 says:

You've got to view the full desktop site. I'm on my phone and didn't see it, but I tapped full version and saw the pictures. You should check them out; Asus designed it quite nicely.

False_Aesop says:

Hrm.... Right now I have a Galaxy Nexus and a Transformer Prime, it'd be great to combine the two... but... it looks like this wont have a keyboard dock, unlike the Padphone 1. That disappoints me. Both of my devices are already on Jellybean (the Prime being Asus's 3rd, or 4th if you count the Nexus 7 tablet back in thier current tablets on the market) seeing the Padphone launch with ICS is another knock against it.

This idea has potential, but right now, I'm just not tempted by it. Give it another few years, maybe I'll be interested in a Padphone 4, but the keyboard dock is now a must for me on a tablet and you have only yourself to blame on that Asus.

mrich70 says:

Too rich for my blood...

sledgie#AC says:

Wha????? This makes no sense....
Ok #1, no pictures
#2 no dimensions in width, length for tablet (important because, did you see the original padfone?)
#3 Super IPS+ for the phone, but...IPS for the tablet? As much as i like seeing that finally on a phone, super ips+ was one of the reasons i bought the prime (and returned it for qc issues), but Asus took it away for the tablet? Huh?
No keyboard? Is this incomplete or just yet unannounced? Did johnny shih snap the tablet and keyboard together on stage? Did he take a phone call on the bluetooth stylus?
Ok in all seroousness, ive seen all of Asus' tablet on stage presentations for the last 2 years. Johnny has always been over the top. Was he over the top this time? "And now...presenting......a truly AMAZING transformation....." and then the crowd is usually silent for 10-15 seconds because they dont know whether to clap or cry

Suntan says:

I would take the 32GB version subsidized on VZW for $550 out the door.

-Suntan

blessedred says:

I would honestly just buy the phone because I really don't NEED a tablet. If I did I would've bought one already but $300 for the 32g phone would be great even better if $250.

Fradworth says:

"Shared mobile data connectivity between smartphone and tablet also means just one data plan is needed for both devices, while support for up to 42Mbit/s DC-HSPA+ and 100Mbit/s LTE delivers super-fast web browsing and downloads."

But, will they charge you more? i.e. is it one plan, but second device(tablet) is $10-$20/month extra?

dchawk81 says:

They can't...it's not a second device. The dock just gives you a bigger screen. You're still using the same SIM in the same device with the same radio.

return_0 says:

I WANT.
No
I NEED THIS NOW!

blipp says:

Google needs to get Asus to make these a Nexus device(s). Fix up any docking issues with the software(who knows if its bad on stock JB, even though Asus has a light skin and ICS) and this is the perfect Nexus device to show off how ICS and JB are made for phones and tablets!

I've been saying this for a while now. Nex-ify this thing, give it proper GSM compatibility in the US and sell it for $550-$650. Bam, sold and done. Give me a keyboard dock for $125 and its all I need in the mobile tech world.

mmaestro says:

No pen support? I had really hoped they would retain the stylus of the first version, and the keyboard dock.

phonegeek says:

I would gladly pay unsubsidized prices for this device! JB doesn't concern me because it will likely have JB by the time we can buy a US/Canadian version that has LTE...

MG

KDM 95 says:

When does It come out in the United states?
And how much will it be?

blessedred says:

It's still pending if they will actually let it come to the state because of the US policies with the data and stuff. Technically it's only using one sim so it should come but they haven't made any announcements. But if it does it would probably be $200 for the 16g phone without the tablet $250-300 and $300-400 for the 32g and 64g and with the tablet it would be around the costs $500-800. That's just guessing though.

What we need ASUS to do is take the Transformer Prime Infinity (screen and KB) and the Galaxy Note 10.1 (stereo speaker layout, excellent stylus+stylus storage) and merge them with the phone specs that they have listed here. I was hoping that the Padfone 2 would be that.

I mean, really, the Tablet screen is arguably worse than the phone screen? No Micro-SD slot? (Apparently) No KB dock?

Two steps forward, one step back, ASUS.

BenjaSands says:

This phone looks beautiful. I wonder if Sprint will get this...

blessedred says:

If it does I will wait forever to get it and shell out any figure to buy it.

Mischiew says:

Only one problem with this device, it's made by ASUS. Buy 10 and hope to have one working correctly... no thanks.

This setup is great for a single user. I would rather have a separate tablet and phone. That way I could leave my tablet at home for someone else to use while I'm out and about with my phone.

dchawk81 says:

Buy something else and you can surely do that. If you're thinking "Asus won't get my money" - there's the Transformer line.

dphorgan2#AC says:

The answer to the earlier question about no Jelly Bean. Its because they have to make sure the "skin" doesn't cause crashes and only slows down the phone to 50% of Jelly Bean's original stock speed and smoothness. And to make sure there is enough bloatware to run in the background. There is NOTHING wrong with JB. After I bought my Galaxy Nexus and Nexus 7, I'm staying clear of non Nexus devices. Had a Droid Razr. Motoblur and all the bloatware made the phone sluggish and a pain and all the annoying notifications from bloatware. Add to that, it took a year to just get ICS! -Rant over lol

dchawk81 says:

If it's anything like the Transformer series, it won't have a bloated skin. Asus != Motorola.

blessedred says:

Asus has arguably one of the most stock skin on Android besides Motorola but that's only because Google bought them. But performance in my opinion can never be bad with 2g of RAM and it has the new quad-core S4 Pro which from looking at the LG Optimus G with it's completely bloated skin it ran smooth and unimaginaly quick with whatever they through at it. Plus the new PDK rule Google just made up will speed up the process of putting new Android versions on their phones. I wouldn't be surprised if the update it as fast as Google updates the Nexus brand of devices. With the new thing Google made for their OEM's to get their hands on the new software before it's released.

Rambler358 says:

I so want this! ASUS would be nuts not to bring it to the U.S.