Asus has announced via Twitter that it will be releasing the bootloader unlock tool for the Transformer Prime sometime in February. Asus had earlier confirmed that it will be releasing a bootloader unlock tool for the Prime, but did not exactly state when.
The ASUS Transformer Prime was one of the most anticipated tablets of 2011. The Prime was going to be the first tablet in the world to use a quad-core, technically five cores, processor – Tegra 3. Apart from the processor, the full aluminium body construction, the value for money the tablet offered, the screen and the developer support offered by the community, made the Prime truly desirable.
However, most of the Prime owners were in for a rude shock when they out that their tablet has a 128-bit encrypted bootloader. No one expected this move from Asus, considering the original Transformer came with an easily unlocked bootloader. After some negative criticism, Asus responded back saying it will be releasing a bootloader unlock tool for the Prime soon.
What companies like Asus and HTC need to realize is that developers don’t like to wait for an official tool/use an official tool to unlock their device bootloader. You need to ship it unlocked right from the factory. Quite a few developers have already shown cancelled their Prime purchase due to this.
The Asus Transformer Prime was easily one of the most anticipated tablets of 2011. It was the first ever quad-core tablet to be available to the general masses. Apart from the Tegra 3, Asus improved the Prime in nearly all departments compared to its predecessor- the Transformer – by including an 8MP rear camera, an IPS+ display – which is actually visible outdoors, better battery life, better performance, and an aluminium body.
The only thing it managed to worsen compared to the original Transformer is the GPS performance. Due to the aluminium construction on the Prime, the GPS chip inside the device struggles to communicate with the satellites in the space. The problem is actually because of a design flaw, and there is no way Asus can fix it now. The company has in fact, even updated the Prime’s official spec sheet to remove GPS from its list of features.
The company however is still trying to improve the GPS performance on the Prime by tweaking the software part. The company has started rolling out a new software update which aims at improving the GPS performance of the tablet. The update is being rolled out for Prime owners who are running either Ice Cream Sandwich or Honeycomb. Sadly, quite a few Prime owners did not notice any improvement in the GPS performance of the Prime after installing the update.
Last night at CES, Nvidia and Asus announced that they will start rolling out the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update for the Transformer Prime beginning from today itself.
The Ice Cream Sandwich update for the Prime will bring it with a lot of new features including an improved performance and stability, enhanced web browser, and a few UI enhancements. This move from Asus makes it the first company and the Prime the first Android tablet to get updated Ice Cream Sandwich, beating Motorola (XOOM) and Samsung (Galaxy Tab). The company has also promised to update the original Transformer to Ice Cream Sandwich as soon as possible.
The update is being rolled out via OTA and only in the United States, so all Prime owners might not get the update immediately. Interested Prime owners can follow the instructions mentioned here on how to manually update their Prime to Ice Cream Sandwich. However, keep in mind that the method might not work for everybody since it depends on the SKU of your tablet.
Last week, Asus confirmed that it will be start rolling out the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich for the Transformer Prime, which is the world’s first quad-core tablet, beginning from January 12th.
Now, the company has announced via its Facebook page that it will also be releasing the Ice Cream Sandwich update for the original Transformer as soon as possible after it starts rolling out the ICS Prime update.
Below is the official statement from Asus -:
ICS 4.0 will be coming to existing Eee Pad Transformer TF101. Exact date TBC but we are working on making the FOTA update available a.s.a.p. after Jan 12th launch with Prime TF201.
Looking at how things are going, Asus will become the first Android tablet manufacturer to update its tablets to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. All other ‘big’ manufacturers like Samsung and Motorola should learn a lesson or two from Asus, on how to quickly update their devices to the latest version of Android.
Over the last couple of days, there have been quite a huge uproar about the highly locked down bootloader on the Asus Transformer Prime. Nearly no one expected Asus to take such a drastic step and lock down the bootloader of their tablet. The company even received heavy criticism for this move.
Thanks to all the media attention this topic has got, Asus decided to release an official statement about the matter. The company announced via its Facebook page that even though the bootloader on the Prime is locked down, the company will soon be releasing a tool, which will allow developers and advanced users to unlock it.
Below is the official statement from Asus about this whole issue-:
Regarding the bootloader, the reason we chose to lock it is due to content providers’ requirement for DRM client devices to be as secure as possible. ASUS supports Google DRM in order to provide users with a high quality video rental experience. Also, based on our experience, users who choose to root their devices risk breaking the system completely. However, we know there is demand in the modding community to have an unlocked bootloader. Therefore, ASUS is developing an unlock tool for that community. Please do note that if you choose to unlock your device, the ASUS warranty will be void, and Google video rental will also be unavailable because the device will be no longer protected by security mechanism.
The company has also decided to remove ‘GPS’ from the spec sheet of the Prime because of all the complaints from its user about its poor positioning system. Readers can find more info about this here.
Asus has started rolling out a new software update for its recently released Transformer Prime. The new software update carries the version no. 18.104.22.168-2011223 and does not bring any major changes. It does however bring quite a few enhancements and bug fixes.
Firstly, the update brings some enhancements to the touchscreen firmware and increases the overall touch sensitivity. The overall performance and stability of the tablet has also improved after the update. Other than this, the camera firmware has also been updated which improves the Auto focus capability of the 8MP snapper on the tablet. Reportedly, the camera app now also starts faster. The update also improves the disastrous GPS performance of the Prime.
Asus has also announced that it will be rolling out the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update for the Prime beginning from January 12. This will make Prime the first tablet to get the official Ice Cream Sandwich update. Hopefully, the Ice Cream Sandwich update for the Prime’s predecessor, the Transformer, is not far away as well.
Motorola and Samsung, I hope you are reading this. A relatively new and small company is going to beat you to update its tablet to Ice Cream Sandwich.
At the beginning of this year, Tegra 2 were the hottest SoCs on the planet. All Android geeks out there were eagerly waiting to get their hands on a Tegra 2 powered handset. Tegra 2 deserved all the attention it got since it was the first ever dual-core SoC to be used across any mobile device. This in by itself is no small feat.
Fast forward to year-end, and things are looking the same, except that this time we have Tegra 3 which is gathering all the limelight. The Tegra 3 is going to become the first ever quad-core SoC ever to be used in a consumer-oriented device. This consumer-oriented device is the Asus Transformer Prime, which Asus had announced a few weeks ago. The Transformer Prime is the successor to the original Transformer, which without a doubt has been one of the most popular Android tablets of the year.
When A-soos announced the Prime, it stated that the tablet will come with Android 3.2 Honeycomb but will get the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update soon after. Today, Nvidia and Asus have joined hands to show us all future-Prime owners, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich running on the Transformer Prime.
Below is the video I am talking about :
Asus and Nvidia team managed to get Ice Cream Sandwich up and running on the Prime in only 3 days, and from the video it looks like they have done an incredible job. This is also the first time we get to see how Ice Cream Sandwich actually looks like on a tablet. The Prime looks super-smooth in the above video, and was easily able to playback a 1080p video and Riptide GP 2, which has been optimized for Tegra 3.
The only thing I did wish was that Nvidia and A-soos made the video a bit longer. By releasing such a short teaser, both the companies have only added fuel to all the peoples’ desire of buying the Prime.
The Transformer Prime is all set to go on sale in the United States this December for $499.
Asus has just unveiled the successor to the Transformer, the Transformer Prime. The Prime will be the first ever tablet in the world to feature Nvidia’s Tegra 3 quad-core, technically ‘five cores’, processor. The Prime is one of the slimmest Android tablet around at only 8.3mm thick, and weighs only a mere 586gms.
The Prime wil also boast of a 10.1-inch Super-IPS+ LCD display, with 1280×800 resolution. Asus promises that the display will have a viewing angle of 178 degrees, and will also provide up to 600 bits of brightness when at max brightness. The display is protected by Corning’s Gorilla glass, and there is also an oleophobic coating so as to prevent fingerprints. Other key features of the Prime include 1GB of RAM, 32/64GB of internal memory, a microSD card slot, Bluetooth 2.1, Wi-Fi b/g/n, GPS with A-GPS, micro-HDMI port, and a bunch of sensors.
Even though its a tablet, Asus has installed an 8MP camera with F2.4 aperture at the back, with an LED flash. There is also a 1.3MP camera in the front for video-conferencing. The Prime is physically smaller and lighter than its predecessor, and yet manages to pack in bigger speakers. Asus quotes the battery life of the Transformer at a staggering 12 hours while continuously playing back 1080p videos, which increases to a whopping 18 hours when the keyboard dock is connected.
The Prime will ship with Android 3.2 Honeycomb on-board, and will get the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update shortly after its launch via an OTA update. The 32GB version of the Prime will cost $499, while the 64GB version will cost $599. This makes the Prime $100 costlier than its predecessor, but it is also lighter, slimmer and much faster than the Transformer. The Asus Transformer Prime is expected to hit the shelves sometime next month in the U.S.