Sony hasn’t been an influential player in the tablet space, but they’re challenging that perception today with the unveiling of the 10.1-inch Xperia Tablet Z. It’s thinner than the iPad Mini, it packs 4G LTE support, and it’s even waterproof.
Alleged specs for Sony’s new tablet leaked their way onto the internet last week, confirmed early Monday morning by Sony Mobile of Japan. When you feast your eyes on said specs, you may wonder why the electronics giant didn’t announce the Xperia Tablet Z at CES, alongside the impressive — and equally waterproof — Xperia Z smartphone, which can be safely dunked into 3 feet of liquid
On the outside, it measures a sexy 6.9mm-thin and weighs 495 grams. For some perspective, Apple‘s iPad Mini comes in at 7.2mm thick, the iPad 4 at 9.4mm, and Google‘s Nexus 10 clocks in at 8.9mm thick.
On the inside, Sony is bringing a Qualcomm 1.5Ghz quad-core Snapdragon chip, 2GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage (more importantly you’ll also get microSD expansion), NFC and LTE support, an 8.1 megapixel Exmor R camera, and a 1920 x 1200 resolution display augmented by Sony’s Mobile Bravia Engine. The inclusion of the Mobile Bravia Engine is a crucial footnote, as Sony’s image-enhancing technology really does add vibrancy and color depth to screens of any size.
Finally, it will launch out of the gate running Android 4.1, and ship with black or white for color options. Unfortunately pricing and release availability hasn’t been announced but I’ve reached out to Sony PR for comment.
Sony’s never lacking innovative ideas for their tablets, but to date their hardware engineers haven’t been able to wow us with equally magical design. Frankly, that’s the kind of synergy normally reserved for Apple and Samsung. (We’re talking just tablets here; the PS Vita is still one of the most beautiful pieces of hardware Sony has ever conceived.)
Sony’s one-two punch of the Xperia Z smartphone and Xperia Tablet Z shows they’re going to start swinging aggressively for the fences as the surrounding competition continues to improve. Moreover, their ecosystem continues to evolve with services like Music Unlimited and PlayStation Mobile. It may be time to take Sony very seriously in the tablet space.
A Sony representative has responded with the following statement: “The Xperia Tablet Z announcement was from Sony Mobile Japan and for now is only for the Japanese market. No pricing has been released yet, and availability in Japan will be this Spring.”
For more accessories