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The new NoteFormerIt's getting to be time to move on from my original Asus Transformer Android beast (See below).

While I have been tempted by Samsung's larger Note 10.1 tablet (lower right), and by The Asus Transformer Infinity in the months since they came out, they haven't quite ticking all the boxes that I'd hoped might be ticked by now.

So I've done a little bit of work of my own for these guys by "designing" the tablet that I was hoping would have had me rushing to the shops (or websites ) by now to replace my old Asus.
Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1I'm looking not just to consume (articles, emails, etc.) but also to generate a few documents, so I'm hoping really for something that pushes the limits that we've grown used to - particularly on screen size. However, I don't want my shiny new slate to be much bigger or heavier than before.

Impossible? Maybe not. Because I can compromise on that big bezel around the edge. Since the screen rotates all the way round now, I really don't need a great fat bezel on all four sides like both my almost-there candidates have. I'm not that keen, either, on losing both sides when it's being held in portrait mode, like the iPad mini does.

So, now you may look at the new design - top right. Perhaps some of you have looked already? The new design is shown with the current Galaxy Note 10.1 below it for comparison.

You will probably notice it's asymmetric. But that way, it edges closer to what I was hoping for. I'm going to have the screen as 1920 x 1080, and 11.6" diagonally. ("Full HD") This way the screen area is increased by 25% while the footprint of the whole tablet is around 10% larger than the current Galaxy Note 10.1.

At the same time the pixel density goes up from the very average 150ppi of the Note to about 190ppi. That's nowhere near the extremes reached by The Google Nexus 10 (355ppi) or the HTC One (470ppi). But, to be honest, I think it's a bit debatable whether most people would be able to detect much difference for the money from these super-high resolution models.

Inside, my design masterpiece has the Android extensions you get in the Galaxy Notes (allowing two apps to run side by side) together with the S-pen for things like editing images. It does move on one step In Android terms, to Jelly Bean version 4.2, which allows me to set up user accounts and profiles for different people (or for home and work).

I Asus Transformer TF101 (first generation)haven't shown it, but it also has the keyboard off the Transformer series, together with the extra battery inside the keyboard, and the software to go with that, which comes from Asus. Hence, I'm christening my device the "Noteformer".

This keyboard adds a bit of handy protection to the Noteformer as well as being useful for accessing legacy applications available on our virtual Windows devices, because, in the real world, these applications will need to be supported by many, many businesses for a few years yet. To help with balance, my design moves the battery forwards, so that it's mostly under the touchpad. This way the Noteformer will be a little less likely to tip over backwards while it's being used, compared with the actual Asus Transformer, pictured here.

One more feature, the Noteformer needs is the flexible screen, that, by all accounts, is almost ready in Samsung's labs. It's not that I particularly want to bend my slate around my wrist. The real benefit is in being happy to let the thing drop to the floor, confident it won't break. Or to be able to pack it in an overfull bag and squeeze that bag into the overfull boot ("trunk") of my car.

So it's partly made by Samsung and partly by Asus. No patent issues there then? But if anyone is feeling like adopting "my" design, they will of course be paying handsome royalties to me. Well not really. My demands will be very modest besides the Apples and Microsofts of this world. Because I would like to see such a thing on the market.

( © Richard Fieldhouse, 2013 :-)


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