Summary

User Score

Review Price to be confirmed

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Key Features: 9.4in bezel-free screen; Bias-weighted ‘folded newspaper’ design; Inbuilt IR emitter to act as universal remote; Playstation Suite, streaming music and movies access

Manufacturer: Sony

Our full review of this product, which is now called the Sony Tablet P can be found here: Sony Tablet S

We first told you about Sony’s mysterious S1 Android tablet in February, but now we’ve had a proper eyes-on – alas, no touching was allowed and the tablets were securely encased, but we can still bring you our impressions on the design and a few more tasty titbits on its features.

Sony S1 Tablet

The S1 is the larger of Sony’s two Android tablets, along with its S2 sibling which is a unique dual-screen clamshell device. The S1, on the other hand, only has a single screen, making it a more traditional tablet like the iPad 2 or Android rivals such as the Eee Pad Transformer.

However, the S1 does plenty to stand out from the competition. For one thing, there’s its unusual shape. It’s a bit like a folded newspaper, with one thick side and the other tapering to a finer edge. Whether you find the design attractive is probably a matter of taste (we’re cautiously optimistic about its look), but it does have practical advantages.

Sony S1 Tablet

For one thing, the thicker side (and off-centre point of gravity) should make it easier to grip and hold - especially in portrait mode, which is the most common way to orient a tablet for browsing the web and reading documents. To aid its grippy-ness there’s a dotted pattern texture on the back, which also contributes to the unusual aesthetic.

The screen itself is also an unusual 9.4 inches, compared to most other Android tablets which sport 10.1, 9.7 or 8.9in screens, though it sports a fairly typical 1280 x 768 pixel resolution. Unfortunately it’s as glossy as most of the others so fingerprints and reflections will play havoc, but it is beautifully integrated with a seamless bezel, much like the iPad.

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