Sony Tablet S [Updated]
Has Sony’s first Android tablet been worth the wait?
UPDATE: Now also find my opinions on the Tablet S for Wired. Here’s a sample: “Sony has to be different. It is a strategy which has seen the company both rise and fall, but it doggedly refuses to change its ways. So there’s little surprise Sony’s long awaited iPad rival shows all the benefits and drawbacks this approach brings.” Read on
Sony Tablet S
The relentless advance of touchscreen technology has brought many advantages to the tech world, but the increasingly generic look of slab-like devices is a noticeable downside. So praise be to Sony for deciding thin definitely is not in.The Tablet S (previously known as the Sony S1
) is Sony’s long awaited first Android tablet and its primary defining feature is to snub its nose at the aesthetically pleasing but impractical race to be thinnest. Instead Sony has thought along more practical lines producing a tablet whose side profile is reminiscent of its wedge shaped Vaio laptops.
This gives the Tablet S a more natural typing and viewing angle when laid flat and the curved edge is noticeably more comfortable when holding the device one handed in portrait orientation – the natural way for reading books, magazines and other nicely formatted content. What’s more, at 598g it has little practical detriment, weighing less than an iPad 2
(601g). Clearly its maximum thickness (20.3mm) is greater by some margin than most of the competition (circa 10mm) but in everyday use this hasn’t proved at all problematic. Perhaps the only criticism we would made of this wedge shape is that it doesn’t taper enough – the thin end feels chunkier that it perhaps needs to be.What also lets the side down is the mediocre build quality. Aside from its glass screen, the Tablet S is all plastic, and mostly glossy plastic at that. This gives it a slightly hollow feel that just doesn’t quite have the premium feel of most rivals – the pathetic plastic flap that covers the ports is particularly unimpressive. As ever, it isn’t the case that the Tablet S will fall apart, its just about the feel of the thing. Continue Reading