Android Ice Cream Sandwich Update Does Not Help Some Transformer Prime Tablets

The awesome tablet from ASUS called the Transformer Prime has been in the process of getting updated to the latest version of Android. The problem is that this is not fixing the Transformer Prime tablet. The GPS problem is not not fixed and for some owners is actually worse.

The ASUS Transformer Prime tablet has a winning design. It has a screen more powerful, bigger and clearer than an Apple iPad 2. The dual core Tegra 3 processor is the most powerful tablet processor currently on the market. The iPad does not have it. With all that great hardware, there seems to be a significant design flaw. The outside of the Prime tablet was covered with aluminum. The result? An enclosure that is not friendly to radio waves. To be truly mobile, a mobile device will need to use Wi-Fi, GPS and 3G as well.

The big expectation was that when the ASUS Transformer Prime was updated to Ice Cream Sandwich, that one particular problem would be solved. The GPS has not worked right for this tablet. Now, users are still getting poor performance for their spectacular tablet. Some are also getting worse performance, which means no GPS at all. The Ice Cream Sandwich version actually was a technical downgrade for that last group.

ASUS has not been as forthcoming as some would like about the GPS problem. They did address it with a new way of obtaining GPS information. They created a Wi-Fi connection that allows the tablet to report GPS over the web instead of through a satellite link. The idea was a good one since Wi-Fi is a much stronger signal and the metal case of the Transformer Prime can receive it easier.

The better news today is that not everyone is getting the bad results from this Ice Cream Sandwich update. But, as some have pointed out, "only ignorant fanboys" do not report manufacturing errors to the sellers of malfunctioning equipment. Just to look a little better in this mess, ASUS removed all reference to the GPS feature on their web site. They also issued a statement saying that the ASUS Transformer Prime is not a "professional GPS device". The kicker for ASUS is that Amazon dot com also sells this same ASUS tablet. They have yet to remove the GPS feature from their sales page.

Look for the Transformer Prime tablet to suffer from all this negative news. It is not expected to outsell iPads or Kindle Fire tablets. It will have the potential to make its buyers one happy camper with its outstanding workmanship and power, even with bad GPS.




A broken GPS probably is not that big of a deal for 95% of tablet users.. What matters to most (i believe) is stability, ease of use and, availability of GOOD apps. Even things like speed/power dont matter so much to the AVERAGE tablet user.. many will (and, based on sales data, already have) choose a "slower" iPad with liquid-fluid screen response over that "more powerful" tablet with dual-core Tegra-whatever that stutters and jerks when you flip things around the screen.

Although, if I bought a device that had a non-functioning GPS it would drive me insane - even if i never use or need the GPS..

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