Sony Heats-Up the Android Tablet Competition with 'Playstation' Android Tab - S1


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Jan 5, 2011

If you are starting to have doubts about some of the Android Tablets soon to be released, such as the Motorola Xoom with no Flash support and the HTC Flyer without Honeycomb, it would seem that a surprising new option is on the distant horizon. Sony is jumping into the Android Tablet game in a big way. They are deep in development on a prototype for a Honeycomb Android based gaming and media tablet, internally codenamed the 'S1'. This new variant in the tablet wars was actually leaked earlier, but we wanted to wait for some more details and confirmation before we jumped on the story. Here are the features that Sony is shooting for:
  • 9.4 Inch Tab with 1,280 x 800 pixel Resolution
  • Android 3.0/Honeycomb
  • The NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor
  • Custom Sony-built transitions and UI elements
  • Qriocity, Sony's music, games, ebooks, and videos on demand service that's recently launched in Europe
  • Preloaded with Sony PS One games
  • Built-in Bravia Media Remote
  • PlayStation integration with full PlayStation Certification
  • Front and Rear-facing cameras
  • A USB-A port for USB thumb drives or media devices
  • An IR port allowing you to control devices other than your Bravia TV
  • Unique 'Wrap-design' to be easier to hold
These are some pretty impressive and 'lofty' aspirations to say the least. As you can see from the 'mock-up' picture above, it has a very unique physical 'wrap-design' that is intended to do two things. One, it helps distribute the weight of the device in such a way to make the Tab feel lighter and be easier to hold one-handed. Two, it is meant to present the image of a more 'personal' possession, like a favorite folded book or magazine. (Although, this is really more of a marketing gimmick, this still makes it stand out from the crowd.)

In addition to the fact that this device is more official now, there is some good news and bad news related to it. The bad news is that it will probably not be released until September of this year. The good news is that the W-Fi only version is pre-slated to sell for about $599 dollars. That's pretty reasonable considering the impressive feature set. Furthermore, since it is so far off, when the Tablet wars heat up this summer and prices start dropping on the various tablets, it is entirely possible that Sony will release the device at an even cheaper price-point than that. We shall see.

Sound off in the forums if this complicates your Tablet purchase decision making, or if it is just too far in the future to impact you right now.

Source: Engadget