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Asus PadFone shown off in hands-on photos

The Asus PadFone shows off its 4.3-inch screen, Android Ice Cream Sandwich software and 10-inch tablet dock in these lovely hands-on photos.

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Andrew Hoyle
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Can't decide between a new phone and a new tablet? Asus is here to help with the PadFone -- a 4.3-inch smart phone that transforms into a 10-inch tablet. Our buddies over at CNET Asia have gone hands-on and have snapped some delicious-looking photos.

The phone itself offers a 4.3-inch AMOLED screen with a 960x540-pixel resolution. It's not quite got the super-high definition of phones like the Sony Xperia S, but it at least seems pretty bright and reasonably vivid. With its sloping bottom edge and circular textured back, it has a design that makes it stand out from the usual black rectangle smart phone crowd.

If a 4.3-inch screen isn't big enough for you, then pop the phone inside the tablet body and get swiping on the 10-inch screen instead. There's no processor inside the tablet, so it's basically like a big case, with the phone itself providing the power. It's packing a dual-core 1.5GHz processor, which should make the phone pretty nippy. But once you start using a more demanding big screen, you might see a bit of a slowdown.

It's running the latest version of Android, known as Ice Cream Sandwich, which luckily is designed to provide a similar experience on both phones and tablets. When you're just using the phone, the interface is similar to what I've seen on the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, but when you're using it in tablet mode, it becomes pretty much identical to what you'd find on the Asus Transformer Prime.

The PadFone is a very similar idea to the Motorola Atrix, which is also able to fit inside different shells to change into other devices. It's a neat idea, but if you've already got a nice tablet and just want a phone, it's probably not going to be worth your time. The quad-core, high-definition Optimus 4X HD from LG might be more up your street.

If, however, you're having a terrible time deciding exactly which screen-swiping device you should splash your cash on, the PadFone could be worth a look.

There's no word yet on pricing or availability, but make sure to keep it CNET UK for the latest news. For more information on the best new phones from Mobile World Congress, head over to our super-cool topic hub.

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Guess where the phone slots.
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In here!
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Socket to 'em.
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Here's the camera and flash.
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Touch my fascia.
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Smaller than the Samsung Galaxy Nexus.
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That's one way to make a DIY tablet...
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Twenty-nine degrees! Our friends over at CNET Asia are just trying to make us jealous.

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