The next version of the Asus PadFone
could ship with a keyboard dock, according to photographs in an FCC filing
. The images show a smartphone inserted into a tablet dock, just as with earlier models
of the device, with the combined unit connected to a small keyboard, effectively turning the entire device into a netbook or a small notebook, just like the original model.
While the PadFone and the tablet dock typically have their own batteries, with the tablet portion also used to recharge the smartphone, MobileGeeks reports
the keyboard dock includes a small 450mAh battery, suggesting it is included to power just the Bluetooth radios and the trackpad. The keyboard section also appears to avoid providing any extra USB or VGA interfaces, but since the tablet dock adds extra ports and connections anyway, it could be argued they would be wasted being duplicated again.
The listing does not mention what model of PadFone would be compatible with the keyboard dock. There is a chance it could work with the previously-revealed PadFone X
, destined for AT&T, but more information from Asus is likely to surface at Computex next month.