Just a couple of days after pictures of the rumored mammoth 7-inch Samsung Mega 2 leaked (which has officially become the Galaxy W), Asus have announced a similar device of even greater proportions at this years Computex event in Taipei. In the never-ending battle to go one better, Asus have indeed gone one better, by revealing a new device in its FonePad line-up, the FonePad 8. The Asus chairman, Jonney Shih, boldly claims that the hybrid phone/tablet device would enjoy "landslide benchmarking victories" over it's competitors, depending on which benchmarking app was used. Whether the claims will be validated when the FonePad 8 is reviewed is another question altogether.
First, let's go over the specifications which place the FonePad 8 as a decidedly mid-range device. The FonePad 8 features Intel's Atom Z3560 Quad-core 64bit processor, which is clocked up to 1.8GHz. A single Gigabyte of memory is included, and graphics are provided by the PowerVR G6430 chip. The 8-inch IPS display carries on the mid-range theme with a 1280 x 800 WXGA resolution. A 2MP camera is on selfie duty at the front of the device, with a 5MP bringing up the rear. Dual-SIM slots are included, providing 3G capabilities. The FonePad 8 weighs in at 328 grams and has the following dimensions 120 x 214 x 8.9mm.
If you aren't keen on having an 8-inch tablet/phone hybrid in your pocket, Asus also unveiled an updated version of its smaller sibling, the FonePad 7, which includes shares most of the same specifications as the 8 inch, with the obvious exception of having a 7-inch IPS display with the same 1280 x 800 resolution. The FonePad 7 also includes Dual SIM slots with 3G capability, and weighs in a little lighter at 299 grams with dimensions of 108.9 x 194.3 x 9.8mm.
The FonePad range may not be world-beaters, but they aren't meant or marketed to be. And whilst we'd ideally like more than 1GB of RAM to cope better with multi-tasking, as well as a higher resolution display, it isn't needed. What has been included is adequate for the task. The FonePad range looks to offer users a best of all worlds experience, with a device pulling duty on three fronts: a mid-range tablet that not only offers users the ability to place calls and send texts, but also the ability to juggle personal and business profiles via the Dual-SIM slots.
The question is, do you like having a 7 or 8-inch device shoved in your front pocket? (keep it clean guys). Are tablet/phone hybrids just too darn big? What's the biggest device you've used as a phone? I ask this as someone who has previously used the original Galaxy Tab as his phone, and is currently using a Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4 LTE as his main device since Friday (stop laughing, and whoever is calling me, please stop!). As always, let us know your thoughts in the comments below or at our Google Plus page.