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Asus opens up the Transformer Book Duet: A semi-Surface that runs Android 4.1 AND Windows 8.1

Asus has unveiled the latest in its Transformer range of tablet-laptops, the Book Duet (TD300) which runs both Android 4.1 and Windows 8.1. 

As well as letting you do an Optimus Prime by detaching and reattaching the keyboard dock, the Book Duet promises to do a full Tony Stark-Iron transition with the touch of a button. 

Thanks to a dedicated Instant Switch button, found on both the keyboard and on screen, you’re able to flip between both OS in just four seconds. 

Every time to jump to either OS you’ll be able to pick up where you left off when you jump back, meaning you can flip between games of Candy Crush Saga and the work you should be doing instead seamlessly. 

Asus opens up the Transformer Book Duet: A semi-Surface that runs Android 4.1 AND Windows 8.1
Is it a tablet? Is it a laptop? Yes.

Read our reviews of Asus’ Transformer tablets Asus is claiming that this feature of its patented Instant Switch system will give the Book Duet an edge over other dual OS systems, like Samsung’s Ativ Q hybrid Windroid tab-top

Another bonus Asus is keen to stress is that the Book Duet doesn’t use OS virtualization, meaning once you’ve switched over to Android or Windows, you’ll be using all of the Intel Core i7 processor with Intel HD graphics. 

Alongside the Intel chip you get 4GB of RAM (DDR3L 1600), 126GB of SSD storage on the tablet portion of the Book Duet and a further 1TB on the keyboard dock. If this isn’t enough for you, the microSD slot supports cards of up to 64GB in size. 

Asus opens up the Transformer Book Duet: A semi-Surface that runs Android 4.1 AND Windows 8.1
Taking a leaf out of the Samsung Ativ Q’s book (Duet)

Read our review of the Windows 8.1-only Asus Transformer BookAt a glance, there’s also no way of telling how much of that 128GB will be available to the user. There’s two OSs jostling for space on there after all. 

The tablet’s Full HD (1920×1080) screen measures 13.3-inches across and features IPS technology. Twin speakers are built in to the tablet which combined with the HD graphics support and great viewing angles promised by IPS, should make for a great multimedia experience. 

Connections-wise there’s USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports, HDMI 1.4 and a LAN port. WiFi AC and Bluetooth 4.0 with EDR aerials are included. 

Asus claims that the Intel processor combined with the 4GB of RAM makes the Book Duet twice as fast as current tablets powered by ARM processors. If that’s the case, we’re surprised to see that you only get Android 4.1 and not a more up-to-date version of Jelly Bean, let alone 4.4 KitKat. 

Asus opens up the Transformer Book Duet: A semi-Surface that runs Android 4.1 AND Windows 8.1
Behold the power of Windroid. Now, where’s that Jelly Bean update?

For the money Asus will undoubtedly charge for this – you’re essentially getting four devices rolled in to one – we would have liked at least 4.2 Jelly Bean. 

All the specifications currently available are:

Transformer Book Duet TD300 Specifications

  • Dual-OS – Windows 8.1 Standard / Android 4.1
  • 13.3-inch Full HD IPS multi-touch display
  • Up to Intel® Core™ i7 processor
  • 4GB DDR3L 1600 RAM
  • Up to 128GB iSSD
  • Up to 1TB HDD
  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi; Bluetooth 4.0 + EDR
  • Tablet ports: Micro SD card, Headphone jack, DC jack
  • Keyboard dock ports: 1 x USB 3.0, 2 x USB 2.0, 10/100Mbit/s LAN, HDMI 1.4, audio combo jack, DC jack

A UK price and launch date has yet to be announced. 

 

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