All of the device’s inputs are on the left side and they include two USB 2.0 ports, a mic/headphone input, one mini-HDMI port, a volume rocker and an input for the power adapter, there is also a multi-card reader. Along the top of the device are a power slider, a hardware button for the software keyboard, and a lock button for the screen orientation. Network connectivity is handled through an on-board 802.11 firstname.lastname@example.orgGHz adapter and Bluetooth V3.0 adapter. The front of the device sports a 2 MP camera for web conferencing.
The Eee Slate has an optional leather cover, but when the cover is slipped on the orientation lock button is almost inaccessible. Certainly not a huge problem, but frustrating nonetheless.
For the most part, the Eee Slate’s design has been well done. There is a definite feeling that Asus has tried to capture some of the design inspiration from mobile OS powered tablets, even choosing to include a “home screen” button to the front. This button brings up the Windows 7 Aero windows switcher (the equivalent to hitting ALT+Tab) or if the button is held, it brings up the security menu (CTRL+ALT+DEL).
All of this adds up to a well designed device but with one major caveat: the Eee Slate is heavy. The leather case doesn’t help either, it just seems to add bulk. The official weight from Asus is 1.16 kg (2.56 lbs). This weight doesn’t lend itself well to mobility by itself (though neither does a 12.1 inch screen). It feels more like a small laptop than a tablet.