Still a concept ?

Sony, known to make the most glamorous notebooks , is now in the tablet game with the launch of two tablets namely S1 and S2 . Like Asus and Dell , Sony is jumping head-first into the second most competitive “tablet segment” and they have chosen to side with evil, errrr… i mean Google. Yes , they are using Honeycomb as their ecosystem catalyst , modifying it looks-wise and are supplying their own specialized apps like for ex : Qriocity for music streaming et al.

It is very interesting to note that Sony, not Sony Ericcsson, is bringing the stuff to the table.  Note that all legacy PC manufacturers, like HP,Dell and ASUS wanted a slice of the smartphone segment and they all did it, except Sony, because they already had Sony Ericsson to churn out a significant amount of smartphones, but looking at the tablet segment, Sony seems to have taken quite a liking . By all means, SE has better workforce in terms of skill based on ARM devices. If they had wanted , they could have slapped a Qualcomm chipset onto a bigger slab and called it a tablet, like what HTC did with Flyer. But no, Sony had seen something so lucrative in the tablet market that they ditched SE and took full control. So, virtually every big shard PC manufacturer is directly involved in the tablet arena created by erstwhile PC manufacturer Apple ( Mac is a personal computer !). And every other manufacturer than Apple or HP is using the latest version of Google’s Android Honeycomb, which is yet to take off well, in terms of native apps. While the addition of Sony brings class and innovation , we should also note that it’s also bringing huge competition to it’s own ecosystem. Now, all that info aside, let’s concentrate on the new tablets for the time being.

Some details from Sony’s press notes :

 S1 has a 9.4-inch display for enjoying the web and rich content on a large screen. Its off-center of gravity design realizes stability and ease of grip as well as a sense of stability and lightness, offering comfortable use for hours.

S2 has two 5.5-inch displays that can be folded for easy portability. In contrast to existing tablets, its unprecedented dual screen presentation and usability allows its displays to be combined and used as a large screen or for different functions such as playing video on one screen while showing control buttons on the other.

The S1 is designed like a magazine book, when folded . Has a much traditional form factor otherwise. 9.4 inch touchscreen and a bezel on the front, and other Honeycomb standards like Tegra 2 processor, front and rear facing cameras.. etc. The S2 has two 1024×480 displays with a lot of bezel. Both S1 and S2 have a lot in common, that is , hardware innards, both are PlayStation certified, they are capable of acting as remote control for all Sony bravia AV devices,also DLNA support,while sporting a new tile based Honeycomb UI.

Hit the break for the press release.

More details and a video here

Press release full :

 Sony Corporation (“Sony”), announces “Sony Tablet” that delivers the perfect combination of hardware, content and network with seamless usability for a high-quality, engaging entertainment experience. Based on decades of engineering heritage, Sony is developing two tablets with unprecedented design, including S1 (codename) which is optimized for rich media entertainment and S2 (codename) which is ideal for mobile communication and entertainment. “Sony Tablet” will become available in the global market starting in fall 2011.

“Sony Tablet” is equipped with the latest Android 3.0 which is designed for devices with larger screen sizes, particularly tablets. Both tablets are WiFi and WAN (3G/4G) compatible and users can not only browse the internet or check e-mail but they can also smoothly access digital content including videos, games and books through Sony’s premium network services and more, on-the-go at any time.

 S1 has a 9.4-inch display for enjoying the web and rich content on a large screen. Its off-center of gravity design realizes stability and ease of grip as well as a sense of stability and lightness, offering comfortable use for hours.

S2 has two 5.5-inch displays that can be folded for easy portability. In contrast to existing tablets, its unprecedented dual screen presentation and usability allows its displays to be combined and used as a large screen or for different functions such as playing video on one screen while showing control buttons on the other.

“‘Sony Tablet’ delivers an entertainment experience where users can enjoy cloud-based services on-the-go at any time. We’re aiming to create a new lifestyle by integrating consumer hardware, including ‘Sony Tablet’ with content and network,” said Kunimasa Suzuki, Corporate Executive, SVP, and Deputy President of Consumer Products & Services Group.

“Android 3.0 is a new version of the Android platform with a new holographic user interface that is designed from the ground up for devices with larger screen sizes, particularly tablets. I’m excited about “Sony Tablet” as it will further spur the development of applications and network offerings which users are looking for.” said Andy Rubin, Senior Vice President, Mobile, Google Inc.

Also, in the mobile computing category, the market for PCs which realize high productivity is expected to steadily grow, particularly in emerging markets. Therefore, Sony will also remain committed to strengthening its VAIO brand and introduce increasingly compelling products which offer new value propositions to the market.

“Sony Tablet” features.

Designed for portability and intuitive gripping

With its off-center of gravity form factor, the 9.4-inch S1 offers stability and a sense of lightness, offering comfortable use for hours.
The dual screen S2 comes with two 5.5-inch displays which can be used together as one large screen to browse websites and more. They can also be used for different functions as users can watch a video on one screen and input commands on the other, or check email on one screen and use the other as a soft keyboard.

Seamless Usability and Performance

Through Sony’s knowhow for combining hardware and software, “Sony Tablet” realizes optimal usability and performance. Because of Sony’s rapid response technologies, users can perform smooth, quick touch-screen operations and enjoy fast and efficient website loading. The keyboard arrangement is also optimized for the large screen, making email and SNS communication a breeze.

Rich entertainment experiences through various network services

Through Qriocity1 music and video services, users can enjoy rich video and music content. Also, through PlayStation®Suite, users can immerse themselves in high quality first generation PlayStation® titles. Additionally, users can easily download ebook content from Reader™Store2 and use both tablets as digital reading devices. The integration with various services allows users to take their entertainment experiences on-the-go. Furthermore, “Sony Tablet” is equipped with functionality that organizes content for easy access.

Remote access functionality with AV devices

Through “Sony Tablet”, users can control home entertainment devices as well as enjoy content in new ways. S1 uses infrared technology and works as universal remote controls for a variety of AV devices starting with. Users can perform functions like turning on their TVs, changing the channel and adjusting the volume. Also, through DLNA functionality on “Sony Tablet”, users can “throw” personal content to large screen televisions or music to wireless speakers.

In 2010, Sony launched a network platform called “Qriocity” which connects many of Sony’s network-enabled devices, and has been expanding its services into global markets. Also, Sony Computer Entertainment has been providing various contents and services for PlayStation users through PlayStation®Network, which now has over 75 million registered accounts (as of March 20, 2011) worldwide.

Simultaneously, Sony will continue to announce various devices which leverage these services. Starting in early 2011, Sony Computer Entertainment announced the next-generation portable entertainment system (codename: NGP) while Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications brought “Xperia™PLAY” to the market. Sony is introducing “Sony Tablet” to deliver an entertainment experience which integrates hardware with network services that deliver rich content.

With the establishment of Consumer Products and Services Group in April 2011, Sony will focus on accelerating the development of innovative next generation products and aim to deliver a new lifestyle by strengthening the integration of hardware and network services.
1 In markets where service is available
2 In markets where service is available

“Sony Tablet”, “Qriocity”, “Reader” are trademarks of Sony Corporation
VAIO, <BRAVIA> are registered trademarks of Sony Corporation
PlayStation is a trademark of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.
Xperia is a trademark of Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications AB.
Android is a trademark of Google Inc.

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Comments on: "Sony’s prospective tablet future starts with iconic S1 and dual screen S2" (4)

  1. I really dont understand the point of the dual screen tablet. But the other one looks pretty decent.
    An idea for your next post – do a comprehensive comparison of all the tablets existing in the market and conclude which will you buy..

    • Real tablets that currently exist in the Indian market — Apple iPad, soon iPad 2 😛 There is nothing to compare..

      Anyway don’t worry i will include slabphones ( Dell streak and Galaxy Tab ) into consideration and write a loathing comparison .. 😛

  2. actually i wasn’t thinking of indian market. i was thinking of playbook, Xoom and that HP think.. i always forget its name ! is it touchpad ? and also write the review of WHY a tablet is needed? Is it really a future necessity or just a glam device ? Why cant we have kindles and move on. coz i really dont see the point in buying a tablet. i might as well buy a laptop.

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