Hands on: Sony Tablet S..feels good in the hand
The first thing you will notice about the Sony Tablet S is the shape. It is not another slab..it resembles a folded over magazine. Plus at 9.4″ the screen is a tad smaller than most mainstream tablets.
The shape enables Sony to put the heavy stuff in the thicker part which results in a really well balanced tablet..more comfortable to hold than most and because its weight is concentrated on the stronger part of your hand it feels considerably lighter than it’s 590 grams. (l pound 5 ounces)
Turn it on with the somewhat awkwardly placed power button..inside the recessed part of the side…and you will see Sony’s minimalistic version of Honeycomb 3.2. Don’t worry you can add widgets to your heart’s content. As a result of Sony’s Tru Black technology the image pops..lots of contrast and nicely saturated colours. I have heard some complaints about the brightness of the 1280 x 800 screen but, I had no trouble with it even outdoors.
The Tablet S is powered by the ubiquitous iGHz Tegra 2 Dual core processor that provides smooth scrolling and snappy game play..speaking of which it is Playstation certified…
it comes with Crash Bandicoot and Pinball Heroes both of which offer entertaining gameplay.
Battery life with mixed use is about 8 hours and recharging takes about five hours using a proprietary adapter. There is also a USB port (host capable) as well as a standard SD Card port which will take cards up to 32 Gb.The front facing camera is nothing special but works well for video calls..the rear facing 5MP camera takes surprisingly good pictures and good video at 720P HD.
The Tablet S comes with some interesting apps such as Video Unlimited a connection so Sony Pictures movies, Personal space and a DLNA app that allows you to send video to a DLNA enabled TV. There is also a neat Remote control app that will allow you to control all the devices in your Home Entertainment centre.
I was disappointed with the WiFi it was only 2.5GHz..no 5GHz service..and didn’t have the range of my other devices. It would not work in low signal areas where my other devices did. I don’t know if this is an issue with the radio or antenna design
Overall I really liked the Sony Tablet S..it is a solid, well built, easy to hold tablet that does everything you would want a tablet to do. Most impressive is the price $499..it is not often that you see Sony quality and design at such a competitive price. Worth looking at wherever tablets are sold.