Managed to get a hands on with the new Sony Tablet S. In my recent blog post on the new Sony Tablet I said:
I do quite like the look of the Sony Tablet S, I do like Sony stuff and if I was at this time choosing a tablet, I would be giving serious consideration to this new Sony Tablet. The price is similar (from £399) and that probably is now what will hold this tablet back, if it had been released at the same time as the original iPad it would have been a serious contender.
I couldn’t really give the Tablet S a proper hands on, as there was no real apps on there, no content (apart from an optimised demo) and no internet access. Why can’t retailers selling tablets take a leaf out of Apple’s book and provide internet access for their tablets so that prospective customers can actually try out the tablets properly? Oh I know because they don’t want people to use them for internet stuff…. Of course if they did, then they might in the end and try and buy one!
Back to the Tablet S, the touchscreen was quite responsive and I did quite like the interface. I was less sure though about the form factor. Whereas most tablets rely on a case to slant the screen if you are using the tablet on a desk or table, the Sony Tablet S has a slant built in. It felt as a result quite thick and clunky in the hand, suspect it might be better placed on a desk or table. I didn’t feel in my hands that this was a quality product, certainly not what I anticipated from Sony.
At the end of the day I won’t be spending £399 on a tablet that in my mind isn’t an iPad. I know that sounds like an Apple fanboy statement, but as the HP TouchPad shows, people aren’t willing to choose alternative tablets which are the same price as the iPad, but are willing to try something different if the price is right. I am sure given the choice most people will choose the iPad, not because it is better, but merely because people perceive it to be better.
I am expecting Sony to reduce the price of their new Tablets in less than a year, that isn’t unprecedented, they did it with their innovative UX1XN and other devices, so I may be tempted then.