It wasn’t that long ago that the ASUS Detachable Chromebook CM3 showed up and became the first real competition to the very-popular Lenovo Chromebook Duet. While we still don’t know exactly which Chromebook the ASUS CM3 is, I have a strong suspicion that it is ‘Kakadu’ mainly because that baseboard was the only one we’ve been tracking that has the features necessary to become a detachable Chromebook tablet with a MediaTek MT8183 inside it. Well, until now that is.
Entered into the Chromium Gerrit just a couple months ago (December 29th, actually), ‘Katsu’ looks to be a carbon copy of ‘Kakadu’ – presumably the ASUS Detachable Chromebook CM3 – with a few changes here and there.
Most notably, as the ASUS CM3 looks to be rolling out with a larger 10.5-inch screen versus the Lenovo Duet’s 10.1-inch panel, ‘Katsu’ could be a return to form with what looks to be a similar 10.1-inch form factor being added and tested alongside the same 10.5-inch BOE panel that is in use on ‘Kakadu’ (the ASUS CM3). Which panel will ultimately ship for this tablet? We’re unsure right now.
Apart from this, we don’t know a whole lot about the finer details of ‘Katsu’ at this point save one thing: it seems an 8GB variant may be in play. With these MediaTek MT8183 tablets clearly aiming towards the lower end of the price spectrum, it has been understood that all of them would ship with only 4GB of RAM. However, ‘Katsu’ may buck this trend by offering up an 8GB RAM variation and is already being tested with this added memory in place.
We’ll be keeping a close eye on ‘Katsu’ in the next few months for sure. With boards based on ‘Kukui’, you have to remember the hardware manufacturers have a bit of a head start on things as this baseboard has been in production for a long, long time. With all that development time and progress already finished up, it becomes far simpler to connect the hardware and software pieces that are needed to get a product out the door. While we likely won’t see ‘Katsu’ in a few weeks, it is completely realistic that we could see it roll out before the end of Q2. Again, we’ll be keeping an eye on this one, so stay tuned.