By Maximilian Clarke

Asus’ eee Pad Transformer has trumped Apple’s iPad, their market-dominant rival, by landing the coveted Stuff Gadget Awards 2011.

Stuff, a leading gadget magazine, last night announced the award winners, at a glamourous event at the UnderGlobe in London.

Now in its fourth year, the awards honour the best tech from the past 12 months. With 19 categories up for grabs, six of which were open to public vote, Amazon, Sony, Virgin and Sky were also among the winners.

"For not just offering a viable alternative to the iPad but adding the versatility of a netbook, the Eee Pad Transformer is a worthy winner,” said the publication’s editor, Will Findlater. “We love wow-factor, but it's an added bonus when it comes with practicality."

Though Apple missed out on the Gadget of the Year award, the company did scoop three prestigious gongs. The Apple iPad 2 was crowned Tablet of the Year against stiff competition including the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1. The MacBook Air won the Computer of the Year category, while the iPad 3 was voted Most Wanted Future Gadget by Stuff readers with a huge majority of the votes.

Another hotly contested category, the Phone of the Year, was won by Samsung’s Galaxy SII. This is the first time in three years that the award hasn’t gone to the Apple iPhone. Samsung’s UE55D8000 was also named TV of the year.

The remaining reader-voted awards saw triumph as Retailer of the Year. Sky Go, which allows users to watch Sky TV channels on their iPad wherever and whenever won App of the Year, while OnLive, a cloud gaming platform, scooped Innovation of the Year. Stuff readers also put the Asus Eee Pad Transformer first for Design of the Year and L.A. Noire for Game of the Year.

Tech Accessory of the Year went to the Wacom Inkling, a device that captures sketches on paper digitally, beating the likes of Microsoft, Bose and Pioneer. The Sony Ericsson Xperia Active won Sports and Fitness Gadget of the Year while the Nintendo 3DS prevailed as Gaming Gadget of the Year.

Stuff magazine editor Will Findlater concluded: “This year’s Stuff Awards are proof that the gadget world is more innovative and exciting than ever, shining brightly against a backdrop of financial doom and gloom. The gap between winners and shortlisted runners-up has never been so tight.”

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