2012 was a rough year for Sony as the company watched rival Samsung capture the mobile lead thanks to its Galaxy line of smartphones and tablets, and Apple continue its global dominance with the iPhone 5 and the iPad mini. But Sony does not appear to be ready to simply fade into the shadows of gadget history; the company quietly released its new entry into the crowded tablet field on Monday.
The Xperia Tablet Z was announced with a simple press release on the Japanese version of the Sony Mobile website, complete with specifications and photos. Offered in black or white, Sony’s new 10.1-inch tablet runs on Android 4.1, has a 1.5-GHz, quad-core processor, and comes with an 8-megapixel camera that automatically adjusts to optimum settings when shooting in dark areas.
Sony has also outfitted the tablet with what it calls a “Reality Display” that is designed to offer better high-definition images, and the company claims that the device is also waterproof and dustproof. But one feature that will certainly stir some interest is the tablet’s lightweight design. According to the release, the tablet is just 6.9 millimeters thick, a notable improvement on the 7.2 millimeter-thick iPad mini, a device many reviewers have praised for its thinness compared to other competing tablets.
This new tablet shares the same branding as Sony’s Xperia Z smartphone, which the company showed off at CES, receiving high marks from the PCMag team. Based on the photos, the tablet version of the Xperia Z appears to share the same high-end fit and finish as its smartphone companion. Additionally, the device supports LTE and offers NFC (near field communication) connectivity with other Sony products.
Pricing for the device has yet to be revealed and, at least for now, the tablet has only been officially announced for the Japanese market.
By Adario Strange, PCMag