Asus PadFone Infinity: Best of MWC 2013

Asus’s PadFone range isn’t the most popular one out there, but that doesn’t mean the company is not putting its full weight behind the phone-tablet combo. The PadFone Infinity comes with improved internals and competes directly with other 2013 flagships such as the HTC One and Sony Xperia Z.

The display is a 5-inch Super IPS+ LCD and the 1080p resolution means you get 441 pixels per inch. The PadFone Infinity’s tablet component, or what Asus calls the Infinity Station, retains the 10.1-inch screen, but there’s full HD resolution here too; it now has a resolution of 1920 x 1200 pixels, up from 1280 x 800 pixels in the last model.

Two HD displays in one, the Asus PadFone Infinity

Two HD displays in one, the Asus PadFone Infinity



The Infinity packs a quad-core Snapdragon 600 chip clocked at 1.7GHz and an Adreno 320 GPU, a combination that is gracing more and more flagships. The RAM is a healthy 2GB. Buyers can choose from 32GB or the 64GB version of the PadFone Infinity. However, there is no microSD card slot, which is an odd decision considering it could have easily been fitted into the PadFone’s tablet component without making many adjustments.

Here are the key specifications of the PadFone Infinity:

  • 5-inch Super IPS+ full HD display (phone) and 10.1-inch display with 1920 x 1200 resolution (tablet)
  • 4G, LTE Cat3 up to 100Mbps DL, 3G, DC-HSPA+ up to 42Mbps, GSM, EDGE
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/ac/b/g/n, Wi-Fi Direct, dual-band, Wi-Fi hotspot
  • Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP
  • GPS with A-GPS support and GLONASS
  • 13 megapixel primary camera with LED flash and 2 megapixel front camera
  • 32GB/64GB internal storage
  • MicroUSB 2.0 with MHL link and USB Host support
  • Also Look At the Best Of MWC 2013 

Battery life on the PadFone Infinity sounds promising. There is a 2400 mAh battery within the phone, which the company claims can give you up to 19 hours of 3G talk time and 40 hours when docked into Infinity Station. The dock also has a 5000 mAh battery and can fully recharge the docked PadFone Infinity up to three times. The Infinity ships with Android 4.2, so at least the software experience should be smooth.

Unfortunately, Asus has fouled up the pricing of the Asus PadFone Infinity. The combined price is around £800 (approx Rs 65,000), which makes it a very expensive proposition any way you look at it.


The display tech is a key new ingredient in the Infinity mix – the phone part boasts a Super IPS 5-inch retina-beating display at 441ppi which, while looks stunning, doesn't appear that much better than any other top end Android handset (hello, Samsung Galaxy S3). The iPhone's retina display is 326ppi, if you want to know the figures.

Asus Padfone Infinity
Asus Padfone Infinity
As with the Padfone 2 (which is coming to more countries including the UK), the slide in and out motion works exceedingly well both in terms of the physical movement – it's completely secure and rubber gromits mean the phone doesn't fall out – and the software, which switches from one screen to the other when you dock and un-dock.


Asus Padfone Infinity
The Infinity was announced by Asus' Jonny Shih on stage at MWC 2013, where he was joined by Qualcomm's Paul Jacobs – the new device packs a 1.7GHz quad-core Snapdragon 600 CPU and uses the US firm's third-generation LTE tech.


Asus Padfone Infinity
This thing is fast; there's absolutely no lag but then you'd expect that with a quad-core chip. Asus reckons it's possible to get 19 hours of 3G talk time out of the device when it's all fully charged.


Asus
The Padfone Station dock converts the phone into a 10.1-inch tablet with 1,920 x 1,200 resolution. It can also be used as a battery pack, which gives you three times the battery life and it also has its own 1MP front-mounted camera and a micro USB port.


Asus Padfone Infinity
The phone/tablet combo has the same-style aluminium unibody design housing as the Padfone 2. In terms of the other key specs there is 2GB of RAM, plus NFC and 64GB of flash memory.


Asus Padfone Infinity
The tablet is able to replicate many of the phone's functions and also has a dialler. Undocking takes you to the same app on the phone. The tablet can also output 1080p Full HD video via an adapter for its micro USB socket.
The Infinity can also capture 8 still photos per second in burst mode.


Asus Padfone Infinity
Asus previewed the Padfone Infinity includes Echo, essentially the same as Apple's Siri, but with some typically Asus effects. Say 'cheese' and it will take a photo of you.


Asus Padfone Infinity

Early verdict

The Padfone is a thing of beauty. It's not for everyone but many of us do have a use-case for it. If you have a tablet yet find yourself using more things on your phone then Asus believes you'll be in its Padfone queue.


Asus
The device is certainly a looker and does have a lot to offer - the smartphone itself is superb. It does have a premium price point of 999 Euros though - $1325 or AU$1287 - and so it will be interesting to see if Asus can shift them. In the UK, Asus is launching the Padfone 2 for now, though it hints the Padfone Infinity will arrive - probably around £799.


Asus Padfone Infinity

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