Asus’ super-powerful silver bullet Android tablet had one big problem: its GPS sucked. So instead of issuing replacement hardware that didn’t suck, Asus is handing out fat, ugly dongle attachments. Oh, and they block the tablet’s dock connector, too. Sweet!
Land of Droid, which says the GPS booster “works very good”, has exclusive shots of the dongle, which will be available for free tomorrow. Asus seems pretty excited about the kit, too:
The response to the Transformer Prime generally has been overwhelmingly positive, but we understand that, in certain situations, the GPS functionality has not met some users’ expectations. Although the Transformer Prime is not a designated GPS device, as part of our unwavering commitment to customers we are offering all Transformer Prime owners a free external GPS extension kit, called a dongle, which may help improve signal reception and optimise the user experience.
Great — but this is design at its absolute least thoughtful. The Transformer is already a large device, and sticking this plastic tumour on top like some sort of squashed dunce cap is beyond inelegant. You can’t even charge the tablet with this thing plugged in. Imagine if Apple had addressed the iPhone’s antenna problem by adding an external ’90s-era telescoping antenna? This is on the same plane of design and aesthetic fatuousness. Transformer owners tend to love their power-slate, and they deserve better than this.