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AT&T Targets Affordability With PadFone X Mini

Dallas – AT&T, which launched the Asus PadFone X earlier this year, is bringing out the device’s little brother.

The PadFone X mini smartphone-and-tablet package, billed as “budget-friendly,” will be available exclusively on the AT&T LTE network with no contract at $199 with AT&T’s prepaid GoPhone service.

The PadFone X mini will be available in select national retailers in October and, on Oct. 24, in all AT&T retail stores that offer GoPhone service and through the Asus and AT&T web sites. GoPhone plans start at $40/month for 500MB of data and 500 minutes of talk time.

The PadFone X mini packages includes an Android 4.4 KitKat smartphone with 4.5-inch 854 by 480 FWVGA display. The phone docks into the back of an included tablet-like PadFone Station with 7-inch 1280 by 800 WXGA display, which displays and controls phone apps that are resized automatically for the larger display.

The original PadFone X consists of a 5-inch full HD Android 4.4 smartphone that docks into the back of a PadFone Station with 9-inch touchscreen.

The PadFone X mini is the first smartphone for the U.S. market powered by an Intel application processor and an Intel LTE solution, AT&T and Asus said.

The package, said Hermann Eul, Intel Mobile Communications VP/GM, enables “consumers to have more capabilities on one data plan, all at an affordable price.”

The device incorporates Intel’s XMM 7160 LTE modem and an Intel Atom processor with Intel Hyper-Threading Technology, which supports four simultaneous application threads for what the company called “smooth and seamless multitasking and responsive web browsing.”

Other phone features include 1.6GHz 2×2 Intel Atom Z2560 dual-core processor, Asus Zen UI, IPS display, 8GB memory, 1GB RAM, 64GB Micro SD memory-card slot, and LTE Category 3 operation in the AWS, 700MHz, and 850/1900MHz bands. The 5.25-ounce phone also features Wi-Fi b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, 2060mAh removable battery, and 5- and 2-megapixel cameras.

The phone automatically charges when docked with the Station and gets up to 28.3 hours of battery life when docked. The phone’s battery delivers up to 15.8 hours of life when the phone is used as a phone.

The 8.8-ounce PadFone Station features 7-inch IPS display with 1280 x 800 WXGA resolution, 1-megapixel camera, 2200mAh nonremovable battery, micro USB, and headphone output.

The original ASUS PadFone X launched in the summer at $199 with a two-year contract, or $22.92 per month with no contract and no down payment on the AT&T Next 18 trade-up program, or $29.80 per month with the AT&T Next 12 trade-up program.

The PadFone X incorporates Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 800 2.3GHz quad-core CPU, 2GB RAM, 16GB storage, and 64GB Micro SD slot. The PadFone Station features a high-capacity 4,990mAh battery. The combination also features Power Matters Alliance (PMA) wireless charging.