New Asus iPad Mini Clone Coming

I still can’t figure out how Asus massively screwed up their tablet sales in the U.S..

Could it be Best Buy sales were so poor for the otherwise very good US$199 Asus ZenPad S 8.0 due to its Intel CPU? Could word have spread to avoid it from people who had experience with previous Dell tablets with Intel Inside?

I don’t know.

But I do know that Asus wasted a spectacular marketing opportunity with the Asus ZenPad S 8.0 “Pro/Plus Edition.” It had an optional stylus. When the iPad Pro was introduced with an optional stylus too, a savvy Asus marketing department should have been all over that, braying about Asus having a tablet with a stylus too.

But no.

So I figured these tablets were one-offs by Asus and they planned to abandon them quickly and exit that part of the tablet market.

But no.

A new iPad Mini clone is coming!

Asus Might Launch a 7.9-inch Marshmallow Tablet During MWC 2016; Specs Revealed by GeekBench


Tablet News says this will have a Snapdragon 650 CPU. The 650 was previously known as the 618.

The new Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 phone has a Snapdragon 650 CPU inside. If its AnTuTu 6.x score is anything to go by, this new Asus tablet will be significantly more powerful than the prior-gen Intel Inside ones, with a score in the 77,000-range.

But what I don’t understand is the listing of “9GB” of internal storage. That’s probably 16GBs in full, but still. Why so low?

With this tablet, I’d like to see Asus do three things:

1) Make screen sharpening optional, with the default being OFF.

2) Support for their optional stylus.

3) Better back, getting rid of that screwy landscape-oriented and two-part design.

Anyone out there who has been considering one of the Asus ZenPad S 8.0 tablets should now wait.

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3 Responses to New Asus iPad Mini Clone Coming

  1. Robert Jasiek says:

    Surely you have heard about it: iOS 9.3 is said to get its blue light reduction. I.e., besides the Asus ZenPad S 8.0, you might reconsider the iPad Mini 4, which I characterise shortly here:
    – the well known iOS limitations (file management / sharing) are as expected and local transfer to / from PC works only with the right tools only for the standard file formats and only in a somewhat inconvenient manner (but at least it works)
    – iOS is slightly counter-intuitive at first but with a web search an unknown function is quickly learnt and then used reasonably
    – good, partly very good hardware quality except for the just acceptable speakers
    – CPU speed: no problem for light use and ordinary PDFs
    – the display is suitable outdoors in the winter sun at noon in every reasonable angle, with a mirrored window backwards or with mirrored ordinary lights
    – as with any tablet, the fingers’ fat remains on the display and creates a somewhat cloudy impression especially when scrolling while the display light is low
    – with a good router or (in my case) WLAN repeater, the WLAN range is at least 20m through (one wall and) the garden and fast enough for fluent ordinary web surfing
    – with light use, the battery (WLAN on, on average ca. 60% brightness) lasts over 10h (I have not tested nonstop 100% brightness yet)
    – most of the time, with light software use, the tablet is cool; it can occasionally be a bit warm in the lower right corner
    – holding the tablet for a few hours is no problem
    – Siri? I do not know or use it.
    – Payment traps: just be a bit careful.
    – Are 16GB enough? This absolutely depends on your usage. Without video files, only a few tracks and a modest number of photos or documents, and a modest number of installed apps the storage is sufficient. If you need more, the tablet can easily be too expensive.
    – Is the tablet worth its regular price? No. Get it when the price is reduced! Then it is worth every cent – but not more because of the iOS limitations.
    – Who should buy the iPad Mini 4? Users needing reduced reflection, 4:3 and 8″ for consumption only. Who should not buy it? Users managing many files with many programs in a highly productive manner and wishing a PC replacement (get a Windows device instead and – currently – forget about working outdoors directly in the sun).

    • mikecane says:

      All I can say is that I haven’t had to make a decision yet — but if I HAD the money on Xmas Eve, I would have plunked down the US$99 on the Insignia Flex Elite because its price finally matched its worth. I debate when it’s on sale for US$129, even though OMA’s ROM is now available.

      • fm says:

        Intel seems to be reducing focus on mobile given the cost and competition. The recent quarterly report shows a 33% reduction in tablet volume from a year ago. With new parts like this Qualcomm chip it will be difficult to choose Intel parts. The one thing to watch for is Android 6 with the extensible storage feature, it appends the SD card storage to the main storage.

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