The phonebook is a standard affair. It's made up of four tabs that you can switch between with sideways swipes. Contacts are listed by name with a picture to the left. They can be sorted by first or last name, and viewed as first name or last name first.
There's a permanent scroll bar available that you can grab and jump straight to contacts starting with a certain letter. There's regular search as you type too.
The quick contacts feature triggers on tapping a contact image to bring up a tabbed popup window. The tabs are phone and email with a list of the available numbers or addresses. These tabs can be navigated with sideways swipes as well.
The single contact view displays the contact's name along with a star to favorite a contact and a Settings button that lets you edit, share or delete a contact, as well assign custom ringtones to them or set the phone to redirect calls from that contact straight to voice mail.
The other two major tabs in the phonebook are Groups, Starred contacts, and Favorites. Groups are listed by service (e.g. your Gmail account), while favorites are a listed as a grid of large contact photos for quick access.
The dialer features an Asus theme and offers smart dialing. It is just the first tab of the phone app, the other two being the Call log and the Favorites tab (you get the same in the Phonebook). In the Call log, you can't delete individual entries, which was mildly annoying.
The in-call audio quality of the Asus PadFone X was superb. This is hardly a surprise as AT&T's coverage in the New York City area is as good as it gets these days.
The messaging section is business as usual. All SMS/MMS communication is organized into threads - each thread consists of all messages between you and one of your contacts. You can select multiple threads to mass-delete.
Each thread is presented as an IM chat session, the latest message at the bottom. You can manage individual messages (forward, copy, delete) and even lock them to prevent deletion. You can use search to find a specific message in all conversations.
Quick contacts work here too and there's a call shortcut at the top of the screen when viewing a thread.
In addition to the ubiquitous Gmail app, Asus PadFone X features an email client for other email accounts you might have. It can handle multiple POP or IMAP inboxes and gives access to the messages in the original folders that are created online, side by side with the standard local ones such as inbox, drafts and sent items.
The app supports a combined inbox view. It color-codes the inboxes so you can easily tell where each message came from. In case you don't fancy it, the Play Store is brimming with third-party options.
A keyboard developed by Asus handles text input. It takes full advantage of the ample screen size of the device and offers plenty of input of options and available languages.
Naturally, the keyboard works as expected in tablet mode too. Naturally, more options are readily available in the Play Store.