I’m still kind of smitten with the Samsung GALAXY Note 8, but the ASUS Fonepad looks kind of tasty as well. The ASUS Fonepad is a 7″ Android tablet running Android 4.1.2. Like the GALAXY Note 8, the ASUS Fonepad can also function as a phone. (That functionality may not be available in all markets and all carriers. We will see how that plays out once the device begins shipping.)
Now let’s admit that Judie looks kind of silly holding this 7″ tablet to her head as a phone. She wouldn’t be seen dead doing so in real life and neither would I. That noted, there is a pretty good argument to be made for having voice capabilities built into a tablet like the ASUS Fonepad. After all, Bluetooth headsets and speakerphones like the Jabra Speak 510 and the Plantronics Calisto work incredibly well. Moreover, I can see using a device like this with my Martian watch. In each case the tablet would make the connection but the conversation would take place over the headset, speaker or watch. And while my iPad mini doesn’t have the built-in voice connectivity of the ASUS Fonepad, Thanks to Line2 i use the tablet as my speakerphone on a daily basis.
ASUS did some interesting things with the ASUS Fonepad. Like the Nexus 7 the Fonepad has a 1280 x 800 IPS display that is LED backlit. For some reason AUS decided to use an Intel Atom Z2420 processor in the device. The radios include 850/900/1900/2100MHz WCDMA and 850/900/1800/1900MHz EDGE/GSM bands with support for 802.11b/g/n and, strangely, BT 3.0 rather than BT 4.0.
Other specs include 1GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage. The ASUS Fonepad does include a microSD slot so you can add additional storage. And while the ASUS Fonepad isn’t the most powerful or highly-spec’ed device we’ve seen, it does come in with one number that impresses — the ASUS Fonepad will be just $249 when it ships later this spring.