I had a chance at CES today to get my hands on Asus's intriguing Windows 8 convertible, the Taichi. What's unusual about the Taichi is its two-sided display, one of which is a touch screen. One minute you can be typing away on its keyboard as on a conventional laptop. And immediately after pressing a button and folding down the regular display, you can use the touch screen as a tablet.
You can also use the touch display on the reverse side to mimic the one on the front, so that if you've got the display positioned upright, someone sitting directly in front of you can see what you see. Watch my video (below) to get an idea of how the Taichi works.
The Taichi felt surprisingly light when I lifted it; Asus says that it weighs just under 3 pounds. There are 11.6- and 13-inch versions; prices start at $1,300. We'll have one in our labs soon for full testing.
Asus also introduced a convertible all-in-one, the Transformer AiO PC. It's similar to a couple of other new tabletop computers in that you can lift the display out of its dock and lay it flat on a table. It's also somewhat mobile since it includes a battery for plug-free use.
But what makes the Transformer different way is that you can use it either as a Windows 8 computer or an Android tablet. That should to appeal to lots of smart phone users who like their Android apps. The Transformer AiO has an 18.4-inch display and starts at $1,300.
Check out the rest of our CES 2013 coverage.
—Donna L. Tapellini