Shen said in August he saw "no clear market" for the devices, which run somewhere in between a smartbook and a netbook, and that resources were needed more crucially in other areas of the business.
However it seems he has changed his mind, now announcing that he thought the smartbook category had potential for huge growth, and that it could be Asus' "secret weapon" to take it back to the glory days of the Eee PC release.
Shen said the device would probably cost around £110, and that the company would be aiming for a product to show off at CeBIT and Computex next year.
The Stuff office is split on the potential of smartbooks – can a device too big to be a smartphone and not powerful enough to be a laptop take off? What do you think? Let us know below.