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Asus Fonepad launches as 7-inch tablet with call making capabilities

Asus has launched the Asus Fonepad, a 7-inch tablet with the ability to make phone calls, akin to the new Samsung Galaxy 8.0.

Asus unveiled the Asus Fonepad at MWC 2013, revealing the tablet would play host to an Intel 1.2GHz Atom Z2420 processor with 1GB of Ram and will ship with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS.

“It is ideal to have a larger screen with entertainment, social media and other online activities now playing an increasingly important part in our mobile lifestyles,” said Jonney Shih, Asus Chairman. “The incorporation of 3G mobile data with full telephony support makes the Fonepad a perfect combination of tablet and phone in one single device.”

Depicting a completely different approach to the “two devices, one solution” of the Asus Padfone Infinity, the Intel powered Asus Fonepad aims to be the all-in-one smart device solution.

“Intel’s new Atom Z2420 processor delivers the power, performance and flexibility required to accommodate a range of devices and market needs,” said Hermann Eul, Intel vice president and co-general manager of the Mobile and Communications Group. “We think the Asus Fonepad is a very innovative device in an emerging category of 3G tablets with telephony features.”

Asus Fonepad Features

The Asus Fonepad is a 7-inch tablet, akin to the Google Nexus 7, but also features 3G voice and mobile data to offer all the functionality of a smartphone with the display and versatility of a tablet. The device offers a 1280 x 800 pixel IPS display pre-loaded with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS, powered by an Intel Atom Z2420 processor and 1GB of RAM.

Unlike the similar-sized Google Nexus 7 tablet, the Asus Fonepad has a metal back, available in grey and gold, a micro-SIM slot and a microSD reader to expand the 16GB internal storage with a 32GB memory card. Full 3G telephony support means the Asus Fonepad can be used for voice calls, but doesn’t include 4G LTE connectivity.

The 7-inch display can be manipulated using 10-point multitouch functionality, and with the Asus Fonepad weighing 340g and lining up at 10.4mm the tablet should feel light in the hands, but with a weight more than double that of the Apple iPhone 5 it may not be the best for longer calls.

An underwhelming 3-megapixel camera features in the rear, whilst a 1.2-megapixel front facing camera will provide good enough quality for video calling. Like the Asus Padfone Infinity, the Asus Fonepad features Asus Sonice Master audio technology with MaxxAudio 3 by Waves for clear sound, whilst a 4270mAh should provide the Asus Fonepad with 9 hours of battery life.

Asus Fonepad Release Date and Price
The Asus Fonepad release date is yet to be set, with Asus only giving a loose late Q2 2013 timeframe for release. Prices for the Asus Fonepad have been revealed, with the cheapest 16GB version costing £179.

According to Asus, more details on the Asus Fonepad pricing and specifications will be announced closer to the launch date.

Do you think a tablet that doubles as a smartphone is a good idea? Or is it better to keep the two smart devices separate? Give us your thoughts via the Trusted Reviews Facebook and Twitter pages or the comments section below.

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