Asus VivoBook X202E review: An inexpensive touch-screen Windows 8 laptop

Asus VivoBook X202E Average for category [ultraportable]
Video HDMI, VGA HDMI or DisplayPort
Audio Stereo speakers, combo headphone/mic jack Stereo speakers, headphone/microphone jacks
Data 2 USB 2.0, 1 USB 3.0, SD card reader 2 USB 3.0, SD card reader
Networking Ethernet, 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth Ethernet (via dongle), 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
Optical drive None None

Connections, performance, and battery
Despite its small size, the X202E manages to fit in three USB ports, two video outputs, and an Ethernet jack. Keep that in mind the next time you look at the pocketful of external dongles some ultrabooks force you to carry around. On the downside, only one of the USB ports is 3.0 speed, and I can only wonder if there would be any size/weight savings could be found by ditching the dated VGA port.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Trading down to an Intel Core i3 CPU, a part found in only the most budget level of laptops these days, definitely has an effect on performance, as seen in our benchmark tests, running slower than Core i5 low-voltage laptops. If you're only doing one thing at a time, and sticking with everyday tasks such as Web surfing, watching videos, or social networking, there's a good chance you won't notice much of a difference at all. Start adding multiple windows, apps, and simultaneous tasks, and some slowdown is likely.

There was a world of difference, however, between the Core i3 performance, and the performance in Windows 8 systems with Intel's Atom series of processors, as found in the HP Envy X2, Acer W510, and other hybrids. Atom-based systems, despite being pushed in a big way by Intel and Microsoft, are much slower than the i3.

The battery life we've seen from those Atom systems, slow as they are, has been frankly amazing, topping 10 hours in our tests. The Core i3 in the X202E doesn't fare as well, running for 3 hours and 29 minutes on our video playback battery drain test, which is less than a lot of recent Core i5 laptops (which, to be fair, have bigger bodies and can fit in bigger batteries). Still 3.5 hours isn't very impressive for an ultraportable, and that's something to factor in along with the price.

I love the idea of touch-screen Windows 8 laptops dipping down close to $500. There are trade-offs to be sure, in processing power, input device quality, and battery life, and spending another $150 to $200 could make a big difference. But as far as $550 Windows 8 laptops go, the X202E is portable and useful, and worth a look for budget shoppers.

Multimedia multitasking test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Adobe Photoshop CS5 image-processing test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Apple iTunes encoding test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Video playback battery drain test (in minutes)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)

Load test (average watts)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Find out more about how we test laptops.

System configurations:
Asus X202E
Windows 8 (64-bit); 1.8GHz Intel Core i3-3427U; 4GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,600MHz; 32MB (Dedicated) Intel HD 4000; 500GB Hitachi 5,400rpm

Toshiba Satellite P845t-S4310
Windows 8 (64-bit); 1.7GHz Intel Core i5-3317U; 6GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,600MHz; 32MB (Dedicated) Intel HD 4000; 750GB Toshiba 5,400rpm

Sony Vaio T13
Windows 8 (64-bit); 1.7GHz Intel Core i5-3317U; 6GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,333MHz; 32MB (Shared) Intel HD 4000; 500GB Hitachi 5,400rpm

Acer Aspire M5-481PT
Windows 8 (64-bit); 1.7GHz Intel Core i5-3317U; 6GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,600MHz; 128MB (Dedicated) Intel HD 4000; 500GB Hitachi 5,400rpm + 20GB SSD Hybrid

HP Envy x2
Windows 8 (32-bit); 1.8GHz Intel Atom Z2760; 2GB DDR2 SDRAM 1,066MHz; 747MB (Total) Intel GMA; 64GB SSD

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon
Windows 8 (64-bit) w/ SP1; 1.8GHz Intel Core i5-3427U; 4GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,600MHz; 32MB (Dedicated) Intel HD 4000; 180GB Intel SSD

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Where to Buy See all prices

ASUS VivoBook X202E DH31T - 11.6" - Core i3 3217U - Windows 8 64-bit - 4 GB RAM - 500 GB HDD

Part Number: X202E-DH31T-PK
Low Price: $499.99 See all prices

Quick Specifications See All

  • Resolution 1366 x 768 ( HD )
  • Operating System Windows 8 64-bit Edition
  • Installed Size 4 GB
  • Color pink
  • Weight 2.9 lbs
  • Graphics Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000
  • CPU Intel Core i3 (3rd Gen) 3217U / 1.8 GHz
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