Taiwan has yielded us the likes of HTC in terms of hardware manufacturers with a sense of style when handling high quality materials like aluminium. But a company that has been overlooked for its more globally-minded cousin HTC is Asus. Asus shook the market at CES earlier this year by announcing their ZenFone 2, a budget smartphone, coming in at under $300 USD, packing in a 64-bit Intel processor aided by a maximum of 4 gigabytes of RAM. The ZenFone 2 launched internationally not long ago, but Asus isn’t settling for the ZenFone 2’s success. Meet the ZenPad S 8.0.
With the growth of the Android tablet, specifically since the launch of HTC and Google’s Nexus 9, specifically with its unique 4:3 display aspect ratio. Now, the 4:3 aspect ratio isn’t new to tablets, iPad or Android, but Asus is only adding to this growing family of Internet- and app-oriented devices. The ZenPad S 8.0 is the new kid on the block now, but it isn’t slouching in its specification-related chair.
The S 8.0 has the rather respectable Intel Z3580, a 64-bit affair with a top frequency of 2.33 gHz across its four cores, and this processor will be backed by a full 4 gigabytes of RAM, so nothing running on the tablet lags or slows down. Asus has even future-proofed the device with a USB type-C connector. Much like the Nexus 9, the ZenPad S 8.0 features a 2048 by 1536 pixel display, which will allow for a more pixel-dense experience while running Android topped off with Asus’ own Zen UI overlay.
The best part, or parts actually, are the front-facing, stereo speakers on the S 8.0 that will fire out, thanks to DTS enhancements, surround sound for a more immersive experience. The other part that you honestly probably already guessed is the fact that this tablet will run all those specs from within an aluminium body, with a set of stylish and functional accessories.
Alongside the ZenPad S 8.0 comes the 7.0 and 10.1, part of the same family, though the 7.0 will feature a lower resolution display, only 1024 by 600 pixels, and these three will be acting as a replacement for the MeMO Pad line Asus currently has. Asus will reportedly be offering a folio case that offers an even more surround sound, one for better battery life with an external battery, and one that will simply be a stylish folio to protect that display. The 10.1 variant will also reportedly have a partner keyboard dock to allow for laptop-like use of the larger screen.
Asus looks to step up their game not only in their home country, but in the global market that is now paying full attention to the company that surprised us once, and looks to do the same and then some at the currently-occurring Computex conference. And with the ZenPad line, Asus is aiming squarely at iPads everywhere, and they might be the company that proves that Android tablets can do just that and truly compete.