ASUS has finally done it – launched a PadFone in the US, we mean. In fact, the Taiwanese vendor has made such a to-do about the whole thing that the handset in question, the PadFone X, will be exclusive to the states both geographically and through its carrier of choice, AT&T, when the dual-mode (surprise, surprise) phone lands in mid-2014.
While ASUS isn't yet ready for folks to go hands-on with the device(s), the company was kind enough to display the PadFone X behind a teasing glass cube during its CES 2014 unveiling. Both the 5-inch phone (1920 x 1080) and 9-inch tablet dock (1920 x 1200) sport full HD, TFT LED-backlit touch screens, and it shows even beneath glass.
Powering those screens is the "latest Qualcomm Snapdragon" processor. (ASUS is still being coy regarding some details, including price.) ASUS has opted to give the PadFone X the latest everything, really, with Android. 4.4 KitKat on board, 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.0 and NFC as well.
Perhaps most importantly, the PadFone X runs on the latest LTE Advanced standard through AT&T, meaning a more reliable and (hopefully) even faster connection via carrier aggregation technology. And with 2300mAh and 4900mAh batteries inside the phone and tablet respectively, this smartphone should be able to serve up websites and downloads for a good while on a charge.
At first glance, the PadFone X is one slick device, with heavily curved edges all around amounting to a 0.39-inch thin phone and 0.46-inch slim tablet. The devices have a matte black plastic finish that we can't wait to get our hands on later this year.
It's interesting to see ASUS bring such an obtuse (albeit exciting) handset to the US as its first. The success of the PadFone X could determine ASUS's future in the US mobile market, so no pressure, guys.
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Joe Osborne is the Senior Technology Editor at Insider Inc. His role is to leads the technology coverage team for the Business Insider Shopping team, facilitating expert reviews, comprehensive buying guides, snap deals news and more. Previously, Joe was TechRadar's US computing editor, leading reviews of everything from gaming PCs to internal components and accessories. In his spare time, Joe is a renowned Dungeons and Dragons dungeon master – and arguably the nicest man in tech.