The road from brilliant idea to perfect execution is a long and bumpy one, a lesson that Asus has learned the hard way with the Padfone. The 2 3-in-1 device concept was one for the ages, but the phone/tablet/mini-laptop unspectacularly missed its mark.
The release delays, the carriers’ reluctance to pick up a device that could have messed up with their ideas of doing business, and the steep pricing all contributed to the Padfone’s failure, but fortunately Asus is smart enough to know that persistence is often the key to success.
We first heard about the Padfone 2 way back in May, and, despite initial rumors saying that the second-gen hybrid will only be released by mid-2013, it now seems that the launch is just around the corner. Otherwise, how can you explain the number of leaks piling up in the last few days?
After seeing the Padfone 2 benchmarked and getting some very trustworthy news about a possible unveiling to take place in Milan and Taipei, we now have some juicy details about the gadget’s spec sheet. Or at least these are about the actual phone’s features.
Unlike the previous two rumors, this is particularly fishy, so it’s not to be taken very seriously. Still, the fresh info comes via a photo of a box with an A68 code on it, and, considering the first gen Padfone was also known as the A66, it’s not out of the question for the intel to be spot on.
The Padfone 2 might thus come packing a quad-core Qualcomm APQ8064 Snapdragon S4 Pro CPU clocked at 1.5 GHz, identical to the one inside the LG Optimus G. Like the G, this will also feature 2 GB of RAM and a whopping 13 MP rear-facing camera with Auto-Focus, LED Flash, Zero Shutter Lag, and FullHD recording.
This is all pretty great news for anyone excited about the Padfone 2’s coming, but here’s where things get a bit suspicious. The specs on the box list the phone’s display as a 4.7-inch Super IPS+ HD one with 1280 x 720 pixels resolution, while the icon below the list says “SuperAMOLED.” Those are two different things, and it seems a bit odd to see the panel variations tangled that way.
Leaving this mishap aside, which may or may not be an innocent error, the rest of the specs are pretty “bourgeois” and include a 1.2 MP front-facing cam, a 2,140 mAh Li-Ion battery, WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, Micro-USB 2.0, GPS and A-GPS. No mention about what version of Android the “A68” is running (fingers crossed for Jelly Bean), but also about the Padfone Station’s size, added battery and other special treats.
Hopefully, Asus will take mercy on us soon, make the Padfone 2 official in October and maybe — just maybe — the hybrid will then make its way onto our Christmas shopping lists. Anyone else think that's possible? Or do you still think major carriers will refuse to get near it?