Fans of the detachable laptop form factor are going to have an intriguing new option from Asus before the year is out with the Vivobook 13 Slate OLED.
Asus announced the 13.3-inch Windows device today, with a ship date sometime in December, and the enticing starting price of $599 with a keyboard and stylus (via The Verge).
That OLED display is certainly the highlight when combined with that sub-$600 starting price. We've seen a number of OLED panels in laptops this year, but they typically have been reserved for laptops that are north of $1,000 or even $2,000. Asus claims the display covers 100% of the DCI-P3 color gamut and offers a 0.2-millisecond response time, while also offering up to 70% lower blue-light levels than an LCD display.
While the Vivobook 13 Slate OLED is a full Windows 11 laptop, Asus is leaning into it as a content consumption device with a 16:9 display that is tailor-made for watching videos. The tagline on Asus' page for the device is "Your PC, Your OLED TV." The Slate OLED also boasts Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos support with a quad-speaker array.
That doesn't preclude someone using it as a productivity or creativity machine, again you get a detachable keyboard with a trackpad and the new Asus Pen 2.0. The active stylus offers 4096 pressure levels, a 266Hz sampling rate and four interchangeable pen tips to suit different artistic needs.
Digging into some of the rest of the specs, you start to see how Asus is hitting this price point with an Intel Pentium Silver N6000 processor powering the Slate and Intel UHD graphics. The base model will include 4GB of LPDDR4X RAM with the option to upgrade to 8GB. Onboard storage in the base model is 128GB of eMMC, while an upgrade to a 256GB M.2 NVMe SSD is available.
Ports are not bad for this form factor, which includes two USB-C (3.2 Gen 2), one 3.5mm headphone/mic jack and a microSD card reader. I was similarly impressed to see both Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.2 included. Asus claims that the 50WHrs battery will last up to 9.5 hours on a charge, which would be fine although not outstanding. The bundled 65W charger will get the Slate up to 60% charged in 39 minutes, which helps quite a bit.
You also get a 5MP front-facing camera and a 13MP rear camera to capture images or video with the tablet, but the primary intention for these cameras is presumably for video chatting or video conferencing.
Particularly for those that were considering picking up an iPad Pro, but didn't love the idea of buying into iPadOS, this should be an intriguing option when it launches in December.