ASUS has made a name for itself by crafting Android-powered tablets like the Nexus 7 and its Transformer line of slate/keyboard dock combos. The company has also released a few smartphones in its time, like the Padfone family of devices that can be docked into a tablet. We haven't really seen much of ASUS and its handsets in the U.S., but according to company chairman Jonney Shih, that'll change soon.
In an interview with AllThingsD, Shih has revealed that ASUS is planning on breaking into the U.S. smartphone market. The exec acknowledged that he and his company are "latecomers" when it comes to the mobile phone game, but he said that ASUS has been working to build relationships with carriers and retailers in order to improve its odds of success. Despite the ASUS's efforts, it sounds like squeezing a U.S. smartphone debut into 2013 could be a tough proposition, with Shih explaining that a 2014 launch seems "more reasonable."
While we'll have to wait until ASUS's big U.S. debut before we know exactly what kinds of smartphones that it plans to offer here, the company's past products suggest that fans of high-end Android hardware could benefit from ASUS making its way stateside. For example, ASUS's new Padfone Infinity sports a 5-inch 1080p display, 1.7GHz quad-core processor, 13-megapixel rear and 2-megapixel front cameras and Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. To get a better feel for ASUS's PadFone hardware and what it looks like in action, you can check out Aaron's two-part video review of the PadFone 2 here and here.