Asus launched a video today giving us a sneak peek into how the next Transformer will look like, and from what I can tell, it's exactly what I've been hoping it will look like. The first Transformer look ok, but it wasn't as light or thin as a Galaxy Tab 10.1 or iPad. So I was hoping that Transformer 2 will be more like 2 Galaxy Tabs packed together (tablet+keyboard), which would make it incredibly thin for a tablet/netbook hybrid.
The Asus UX21 "Zenbook" with Windows 7 also gave me hope when I saw how thin it is, because that means they now have the experience to build something that thin, and out of aluminum, too. The video even shows that it has the same kind of materials as the UX21. So Asus Transformer 2 is shaping up to be a great device, but the looks and build is just the beginning. The fact that it will be the first Tegra 3 tablet is also giving it tremendous bragging rights.
I believe quad core chips like the Tegra 3 will be much more important for a tablet than they are for a smartphone. For a smartphone, a dual core, with a high clock as possible, should be enough to handle the limited multi-tasking, apps, and other advanced apps. But on a tablet, you're going to do a lot of browsing and multi-tasking, and a quad core is much better for that kind of work load than a dual core. The browser should take full advantage of the 4 cores, so you'll have better performance, too, with pages that should render in under one second (granted you have a nice Wi-Fi connection, too).
The Transformer 2 will most likely ship with Honeycomb very soon, but Asus has been very good with Honeycomb updates so far, and I'm sure Android 4.0 is not too far behind either. It will probably arrive on it by the end of the year, so when it's out just go out and get it, before you'll be treating yourself with a nice Ice Cream Sandwich by the time Christmas arrives.
I expect this tablet/netbook hybrid to be a killer product, because I think that's how tablets should be – not standalone tablets, but hybrids like the Transformer to be able to use the keyboard when you want to get productive and want it in that laptop form factor on your desk, and just the tablet when you want to use it in bed for media consumption or some browsing.
And here's the Asus Transformer 2 promo video I've been talking about: