Asus Eee Pad EP121 - (now Eee Slate)
Update - Current availability for this tablet is very limited at this point. You will have a better chance of finding the business version, the B121 in stock and priced at a more reasonable price. You can still find some open box EP121 tablets from J&R.com but the main retailers have no stock. You can look around and you may be able to find one online. Just be careful what you're paying. This tablet should be less than $1200 in North America. It's a rare find at this point if you're looking for new or even refurbished. Used may be the only option at this point.
The future of the Slate lineup may be over. It appears that the Windows 8 Asus tablets will be based on the Transformer naming. Initially we thought the "Slate" tablets were going to be Windows 8 based, but now we don't hear Asus using Slate in any of their many upcoming Windows 8 models.
Update - Asus has created a business version of the EP121. The new business model is the Asus Eee Pad B121 aka Eee Slate B121. It has the same hardware, but it comes with enhanced security software for networking and privacy. It's more expensive but it has the Windows 7 Professional version operating system. We currently see the B121 shipping in many countries and should be arriving in your country soon if it isn't there already. We will be launching a Eee Pad B121 page in the near future which will break down the differences between the EP121 vs. B121.
About the Asus Eee Pad EP121
Currently the EP121 Eee Pad is the most powerful tablet on the market. It has an Intel Core i-Series processor which makes this like a laptop. If you are looking for versatility and power, the Asus Eee Pad EP121 is a great choice. It's unique from every other tablet on the market today. This Asus tablet comes with a Core i5 with integrated HD graphics.
It has digitized pen input. It ships with a Microsoft Bluetooth keyboard and a folio case also. It runs Window 7 Home Premium edition so you can integrate into your home or office easily and seamlessly. It comes with either 32GB SSD storage or 64GB SSD storage. The Asus EP121 display is 12.1 inch, 1280x800 resolution. It ships with 2GB RAM which is upgradeable to 4GB RAM. The EP121 comes with a 2MP webcam also. It has wifi B/G/N and Bluetooth connectivity. If you want ports, this comes with plenty. The ports include: Mini HDMI, 2 USB, 2-in-1 Audio Jack, Card Reader, Mic, Stereo Speakers. The battery is the only real concern you might have. With that said people are extremely satisfied after purchasing and using the Asus EP121. It would seem that the 4 hours average battery life is reasonable consider what this tablet offers. The size and weight is as follows: 12.28 x 8.15 x .66 inches; 2.53 lbs.
That covers the review in terms of hardware and what's inside. There is more though. The EP121 comes with a Digitizer Pen, Microsoft Bluetooth keyboard and a versatile Folio which doubles as a case and productivity stand. If comes with a good range of software including the following: Windows 7 Home Premium, Internet Explorer 8, Windows Live Essentials: Mesh, Mail, Messenger, Photo Gallery, Movie Maker, Writer, and Family Safety, Microsoft Office Starter 2010, Amazon Kindle application, ArtRage application, ASUS media sharing, and ASUS My Cinema.
Previous Updates, History and News Stories
January 16, 2011 - An EP121 price drop at Amazon.com! The 64GB model went from $1,099 to $1,066. Not sure how long this price drop will last, but you can check it out at Amazon.
January 1 - The EP121 is not actually part of the Eee Pad family now. Asus officially launched this as the Eee Slate EP121 instead. Same product, but different name. Confused? Think of Eee Slate as the Windows tablets and the Eee Pad as the Android tablets. Now we are confused about whether we should cover this model on our site or not. If you want to pre-order the tablet, you can do it. USA shoppers only so far!
December 23, 2010 - With the hype building around CES 2011, more details have been officially announced. The details are accurate but now we know that it will feature an Intel Core i5 Processor.
Let's stop and pause and think now about the EP121. With a tablet packing that type of processor, it's going to stand far and above the rest of the tablet crowd. Remember the Apple iPad and Samsung Galaxy Tab have the 1 Ghz processors whereas the Eee Pad EP121 is packing a laptop processor. It's likely to be equal to what the Apple Macbook Pro offers in terms of processing cababilities! That's well beyond what the competition is offering. This is going to be a make or break for Asus. The fact that the EP121 has this processor at least seperates it from all the rest of the competition in the tablet PC space.
May 31 - The official announcement from Asus has finally come. The first Asus tablet will be the Asus EP121 officially named. The details? Of course you want to know!
Aside from these early details of the EP121, Asus will be releasing a docking station as well as a keyboard accessory. So if you think of an iPad experience done the Asus way, you pretty much have the EP121 in a nutshell. This is not a bad thing! In fact it's lighter and thinner than the Apple counterpart.
May 31 - New hands on videos of the Eee Pad EP121