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Asus VivoTab Smart offers full Windows 8 OS in hybrid tablet form

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal | April 9, 2013
This slim tablet has slim accessories to match. Its full Windows OS is nice, but it is a tablet, so don't expect PC-level performance.

Convertible tablet cover/stand

Looks aside, the VivoTab Smarts real appeal are its accessories. There are two accessories, though theyre sold together as a bundle. The Smart Cover-like screen protector is what Asus calls the Transleeve. It comes in several colors, including black, pink, and light blue, and connects to the VivoTab via a magnet along the side. Though the Transleeve looks like Apples Smart Cover for the iPad, it doesnt act like a Smart Coverthat is, it doesnt automatically wake/sleep the VivoTab when you pull it open. It does, however, lay flush against the VivoTabs screen for a moderate amount of scratch protection.

Whats cool about the Transleeve is that it folds into a stand. Folding it is easythere are scored lines that show you where youre supposed to bend it, and there are built-in magnets that help it stay in place. The stand lets you use the tablet in an upright position or a lower, angled position. I assume the upright position is for use with the external keyboard, while the angled position is more for typing directly on the tablet. The only issue I had with the stand was that its not adjustable, and the upright position offers a bit too much lean for my liking. Id prefer a keyboard dock that lets you adjust the screen position.

Surprisingly comfortable keyboard

The Bluetooth keyboard accessory is surprisingly pleasant to use. Not only is it extremely lightweight and slimyou wouldnt think twice about tossing this in your bag alongside the VivoTabits surprisingly comfortable to type on. Well, relatively speaking. The island-style keys are small, but well-spaced, and they offer considerable tactile feedback. Its certainly not my first choice among keyboards, but as far as externals go, its pretty good.

As a lightweight hybrid thats more tablet than laptop, the Asus VivoTab Smart is a decent choice. This tablet is both extremely portable and usable, and the full Windows 8 OS is a welcome bonus.


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