New Lease On Life – Transformer Prime
January of 2012 saw Asus release their much anticipated Transformer Prime – TF201 tablet running the Android operating system. I got one of the first ones available that January and have very much enjoyed it. Along with the tablet, I bought the keyboard dock which added not only the keyboard, but an additional battery, giving nearly 12 hours of online time.
The TF201 was one of the fastest tablets on the market when it was released. It was the first to use the new Tegra 3 processor and had great graphics. Asus updated the Android version up to 4.1.1 Jellybean and did a great job supporting the unit.
But over the last year, they have moved on to other devices and have left the TF201 behind. But, can there still be life in the nearly 3 year old tablet? The answer is YES!
Development efforts by a group of very dedicated and talented programmers (see this link for information), a version of Android 4.4.4 Kitkat has been created and released. Their release is still in Beta, but I have found it to be quite stable and very powerful. The tablet has better graphics, better battery handling and a much better look and feel.
Installing the new software is not for the feint-of-heart, though. You have to unlock the device using software that is actually provided by Asus. Then you have to remove and replace the recovery image with another. You’re device will no longer be recognized by Asus and by doing this, you void any warranty (although, I doubt there is any left anywhere).
Adding the Google Application suite back, along with all of the apps I had on the tablet prior, was incredibly easy to manage.
The early verdict is this is a very well put together version of Android. My nearly 3 year old tablet is now breathing again and full of life! If is wonderful. It was well worth the three hours I spent working on it.