The Padfone gets a sequel, and an update of specs

If you’re in the market for a new phone, the choice may be more difficult, with a new Asus phone-tablet hybrid on the way, updating the last model significantly by making it faster and ready for 4G.

Reviewed only recently, the Asus Padfone is a device that brought with it some interesting expectations.

Is it a phone? Is it a tablet?

The answer was both, but mostly a phone, with the handset able to be plugged into the tablet for the sharing of files, mobile connection, contacts, messages, and more.

This week overseas, Asus has unveiled the next iteration of the Padfone, with some interesting updates to the product, including a bigger 4.7 inch screen up from the 4.3 inch from the first, 720p HD resolution, quad-core processor instead of the dual-core from the first generation, and 2GB RAM which should help Android run even faster, as we saw when we reviewed Samsung’s 4G Galaxy S3.

The phone will also include support for fourth-generation mobile connectivity (4G) using the Long-Term Evolution (LTE) technology, and should be compatible with both Optus and Telstra’s networks when it arrives.

Over on the multimedia front, the Padfone 2 will receive a 13 megapixel rear camera with a 1.2 megapixel for the front, although Android 4.0 “Ice Cream Sandwich” will be present, with an update coming for the most recent version – 4.1 – also known as “Jelly Bean.”

With all of these increases in technology, the battery has been increased, pushed from the 1520mAh of the first Padfone to a bigger 2140mAh, which should offer increases across the board.

Just like the first model, the Asus Padfone 2 will come with a 10.1 inch tablet station that relies on the phone, working only when you plug the phone into the back of the Padfone station.

The new model Padfone station has shed some weight – around 200 grams – bringing the entire phone-tablet weight to 649 grams, closer to the 652 grams on offer from the Apple iPad, its main competition.

As of yet, there’s no word as for when or if Australia will receive the new model, but given the expected October release date internationally, we shouldn’t be too far off, so stay tuned.