Our pick of the top Android devices out of this week's Taipei show
Computex isn't normally a huge highlight of the year for new Android device launches, but this year's show has been full of hidden gems — interesting, unusual and head-turning devices worthy of any Android fan's attention. As the Taipei-based tradeshow starts to wind down, it's time to bring you our list of device picks from the event, which has hosted an eclectic mix of wearables, smartphones, tablets and entertainment devices.
Head past the break for the rundown of Android Central device picks from Computex 2015.
1. ASUS ZenWatch 2
ASUS' latest Android Wear smartwatch isn't a dramatic departure from the original, but it expands upon its predecessor in a few important areas. There'll be more choice than ever for ZenWatch 2 buyers, with two sizes available, a range of first-party steel straps, and a total of 18 combinations of body and strap.
ASUS' latest wearable also comes with latest version of Android Wear out of the box, and the promise of new software features allowing owners to customize their own watch faces. We'll have to wait a few months before we're able to buy the ZenWatch 2, but there's no denying it's made the biggest impression of all here in Taipei.
2. ASUS ZenPad S 8.0
ASUS unleashed four new ZenPad tablets this year, however the most impressive of all was the high-end offering, the ZenPad S 8.0.
Boasting a slim, light design, an impressive 2048x1536 resolution and fast performance thanks to a new Intel Atom Z3580 (Moorefield) processor, the ZenPad S is a strong entrant into the mid-sized tablet space. Even better, ASUS is supporting it with an extensive line-up of accessories, including a powered stylus and first-party cases. It's been a while since an ASUS tablet gave us reason to be excited, but the ZenPad S stands out as one of the most impressive slates of the show.
3. NVIDIA Shield TV
Technically announced just before Computex, the NVIDIA Shield TV made one of its first public appearances at this year's Computex show. NVIDIA's latest Shield device includes its latest Tegra X1 processor and 16GB of storage into a sleek futuristic design, completely with expandable memory and support for 4K video output.
In addition to straight up Android games through the Play Store and Android TV, NVIDIA adds extra value with support for its own GameStream service and NVIDIA Grid, introducing the ability to play leading PC games on your TV.
4. Acer Liquid X2
High-end Android phones are great, but increasingly we're seeing some highly capable mid-rangers nipping at the heels of the more expensive Android handsets. The Acer Liquid X2 is one such device, bringing a lightweight design, solid construction, speedy performance and a near-stock Android experience.
In contrast to some of Acer's earlier handsets, the Liquid X2 runs a near-pure build of Lollipop, with just a few software additions from the manufacturer. Acer has also managed to pack an enormous 4,000mAh battery into a relatively small 5.5-inch device. And with a 64-bit octa-core MediaTek CPU, there's more than enough performance to go around too.
5. Acer Predator 8
When you're building a gaming tablet that's supposed to stand out from the crowd, it makes sense to take a bombastic approach to design and go all-out on hardware specs, and that's exactly what Acer's done with the Predator 8.
Powered by Intel's top-level Atom X7 processor, the Predator 8 sports a futuristic chassis with four speakers and a bright, vivid display. Some areas of the Predator's hardware remain a mystery, but Acer deserves credit for being one of the few Android tablet makers bring us something unusual and undeniably badass.
6. Check out Windows Central's awards!
Our sibling site Windows Central has also been roaming the show floor here in Taipei, and the editors have come up with some Windows phone, tablet, laptop and desktop recommendations of their own. Head on over to Windows Central to see the best Windows deices from the show!