72

A phone to replace your tablet? Not quite.

72

If we seem unduly harsh on the Padfone X, it's because we still think there's a place in the world for a hybrid like this. Sadly, despite years of tinkering with the same formula, ASUS couldn't completely stick the landing this time around. For all the gripes I've leveled at this thing, though, we'll remind you of this mantra: all of this is just $200 with a contract. For the same price as a single, shiny top-tier handset, you could nab yourself a very respectable smartphone and a tablet that (while flawed) still works. We'd wager there's a decent number of people out there who'd embrace that math wholeheartedly.

But are you one of them? If you've got the means, you'll almost definitely be better served by buying separate phones and tablets. The promise of seamless syncing is a tempting one, and one worth getting right. ASUS hasn't done that here. And hopefully it gets another chance at cracking the brutal US market -- the right sort of design and software tweaks could turn the next-generation Padfone into a gadget worthy of our collective drool. For now, though, ponder the arithmetic and see if you can do better.

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Critic reviews

7.2
8 reviews
  • Reception and call quality
    8.0
  • Display
    7.4
  • Battery life
    7.6
  • Camera
    7.6
  • Ease of use
    7.2
  • Design and form factor
    6.3
  • Portability (size / weight)
    6.5
  • Media support
    6.0
  • Durability
  • Ecosystem (apps, accessories, etc.)
    8.0

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User reviews

8.5
2 reviews
7.0
Engadget Jun 19, 2014

f you've got the means, you'll almost definitely be better served by buying separate phones and tablets. The promise of seamless syncing is a tempting one, and one worth getting right. ASUS hasn't done that here.

Read the full review →
8.0
PC Mag May 31, 2014

While not a perfect union, the modular Asus PadFone X offers a compelling smartphone and tablet combo for the price of a typical smartphone alone.

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7.0
The Wall Street Journal Jun 3, 2014

Our very slim and well-designed phones, tablets and laptops may be more expensive, but they're all far more portable and functional than Asus's heroic hybrid attempt. ... It's still a separate tablet and phone—heavy and thick ones at that.

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7.0
Laptop Magazine Jun 5, 2014

The handset's battery life is relatively short, while the slate is on the heavy side with a distractingly large bezel. Together, though, they make the PadFone X a fairly impressive hybrid at an aggressive price.

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7.0
CNET Aug 20, 2014

Though it has last year's specs, the PadFone X marries two mobile devices into one convenient form at an affordable price.

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7.0
ChipChick Jun 8, 2014

The combo is $199, which feels right for what you get. Aside from being an inexpensive option to buying a phone and a tablet separately, you’ll also save money by not needing mobile hotspot service.

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7.0
PocketNow Jun 5, 2014

The PadFone X includes a de facto tablet in the box at that price point ... When you lump that in with the PadFone’s powerful internals and versatile performance, it’s easy to see how this unique ... smartphone/tablet hybrid would appeal to a student, a gadget lover, or a penny-pincher.

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First Looks

product preview
Engadget Jan 6, 2014

The concept is exactly the same as previous PadFones sold in other parts of the world; the hybrid setup consists of a 5-inch smartphone that docks with a 9-inch tablet shell (or "station"), and your smartphone info carries over to the tablet when it's docked.

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product preview
Engadget May 28, 2014

In use, the whole thing feels heavier than your typical tablet, not least because there's a big ol' hump around back where the phone is. That said, the bulge also creates a natural resting spot for your hands, so it's hard to totally knock it when the ergonomics might actually make sense.

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product preview
PC World Jun 2, 2014

The Padfone X may well be one of the most interesting devices on the market today, but whether or not it really catches on remains to be seen.

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product preview
phoneArena Jan 6, 2014

Unlike the PadFone Infinity, Asus has opted for a smaller, 9" tablet dock this time around, while the smartphone diagonal stays with the same 5", 1080p panel. Both feel solid, though come off as a bit chubby and hefty, especially when the phone is latched onto the tablet dock.

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product preview
Phone Scoop Jan 6, 2014

It is much larger and heavier than the PadFone Mini. It uses landscape orientation, rather than portrait, and the phone drops in the top.

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8.0
Wraith2069 Wraith2069

Love the phone!!!! It's by far the most amazing piece of tech I've bought so far and I have a Lenovo Y510P with expanded graphics and 12 gigs ram. Not so impressed with the naming on it though. Wish Asus would have gone a bit more creative on this but it's ok. Very few technical flaws with it...

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9.0
NH2G NH2G

I'm not really sure what exactly drew me to the Padfone X, but after using it, I couldn't be more impressed.

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