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Sony Xperia Tablet S

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 Sony Xperia Tablet S Available now
30th August 2012

The Sony Xperia Tablet S is the replacement for the original Sony Tablet S that started shipping last year. This tablet bears the "Xperia" name because it is the first tablet from Sony that came after their buyout of Sony Ericsson.

This new tablet follows on from its predecessor quite closely, sharing a similar wedge design and a 9.4" display. As you would expect, there are improvements all around that bring the Xperia Tablet S bang up-to-date.

Inside is a quad-core 1.3 GHz processor with 1GB of RAM, on the back is an 8 megapixel camera with a secondary 1 megapixel unit on the front for video calling. Internal flash memory is either 16,32 or 64GB with an SD memory card slot for further expansion. The display is a 9.4" 1280 x 800 pixel "TruBlack" touchscreen and the Xperia Tablet S is also splash resistant. The tablet also has an infra-red port allowing it to control home entertainment systems, and it is available in WiFi-only or 3G-plus-WiFi configurations.

The supplied operating system is Android 4.0.3, but no upgrade path has been mentioned for Android 4.1 although we presume that it will be possible to update it at some point. The Xperia Tablet S has been enhanced by various software add-ons familiar to Xperia users, and of course you can download thousands of applications onto the device too.

At 560 grams it is a fair bit lighter than the current Apple iPad, but the display is a little smaller and despite being a full HD screen it doesn't come close to the ultra-sharp Apple retina display. Apart from the screen, most components in the Xperia Tablet S are better or equal to those found in its iPad rival.

 Sony Xperia Tablet S There are also a wide range of accessories available including various docking stands and cradles, covers and external keyboards.. so you don't just have to use the Xperia Tablet S as a traditional tablet.

The Sony Xperia Tablet S is available to pre-order now with deliveries in the US scheduled from early September onwards, and we guess other regions shortly after that. The basic 16GB WiFi-only Tablet costs $400 in the US, €400 in Germany and £329 in the UK. Not all prices have been announced, but the 64GB WiFi-only device will cost $600 in the US and the 16GB 3G-enabled one will cost £429 in the UK.

At the moment Apple have a near-monopoly on tablet sales, and rivals have struggled to get any market traction. Sony's second generation tablet seems to be well designed though, and the Sony name has a certain appeal to many consumers which may well help the Xperia Tablet S to sell.

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Sony Xperia Tablet S at a glance

Available:

Q3 / Q4 2012

Network:

GSM + UMTS (optional)

Data:

GPRS + EDGE + UMTS (3G) + HSPA (optional)

WiFi

Screen:

9.4" 1280 x 800 pixels

Camera:

8 megapixels (main)

1 megapixels (sub)

Size:

Large tablet

240 x 174 x 9 to 12mm / 560 grams

Bluetooth:

Yes

Memory card:

SD

Infra-red:

Yes

Polyphonic:

Yes

Java:

Optional

GPS:

Yes

OS:

Android 4.0

Battery life:

10 hours web browsing

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