According to anonymous supply chain makers from Taiwan, Asus is getting close to passing the 1 million sales mark for the Padfone 2 smartphone. This is a pretty important milestone for Asus, a company that is a relatively new entrant in the smartphone market.
To be honest, I didn’t think the Padfone 2 would sell as well as it did, although I was hoping it would. The reason I didn’t think it would sell well was because of their idea of integration with a tablet. Even though it can be sold separately, too, the name is too tied into that whole idea, and might get some stigma for it.
I don’t think it’s that convenient to buy a phone and a “tablet dock” of sorts. I just don’t see people wanting to do that often. I think that if we are to see any kind of integration at all is when devices will connect with other devices seamlessly and wirelessly, without needing all sorts of docks, accessories and cables to make it work. It needs to be dead-easy to do it. Anything more complicated than that is not going to work and people are not going to buy into that.
So I think the reason Padfone 2 managed to achieve at least some moderate success is because the phone itself was pretty good on its own. It had an HD screen, a dual core S4 processor, and had pretty good design and build quality. As Asus has gotten a pretty good reputation lately in the mobile world, especially after making the Nexus 7, that also played a big role in helping them sell quite a few of them in the end.
I think if they become a little more serious on the design side, and then try to beat the “top” Android manufacturers in specs and quality, and manage to land a partnership at least with a major US carrier, they will start selling a lot more devices. Hopefully, being a new entrant in the US mobile market, won’t mean that the US carriers get to take advantage of them, and dictate all sorts of stuff about how they should build their phone and what to put on it. If they manage to avoid all of that, and push the same model globally, with a decent amount of promotion, I think Asus will continue to grow in the mobile market, especially if they maintain their good software upgrades reputation.