After months of anticipation, Sony released a telling crop of details about its new tablet lineup at the IFA conference in Berlin on Wednesday. The magazine-like Tablet S and the taco-like Tablet P represent Sony's late-to-the-game iPad challenge, and according to the gadget bloggers, it's a weak one. Nevertheless, Sony deserves some credit for being bold.
Engadget and This Is My Next gave the Tablet S a test drive and seemed not so enthusiastic about its performance but excited about its unique design. "In a world of interchangeable rectangular slabs of glass (and patent litigation to match) it's genuinely pleasing to see something so different," writes Tim Stevens at Engadget. "The problem is, it's just different--not necessarily better." Joshua Topolsky at This Is My Next found the software to be "messy," though he was careful to point out that it isn't the final version. With an anticipated price point of $499 for a 16GB and $599 for a 32GB tablet, the Tablet S compares with the iPad and Samsung Galaxy Tab. Sony's new device needs to compete. "There’s no question that Sony has the raw materials--hardware know-how, a big ecosystem, great brands like PlayStation--to deliver a serious competitor in the tablet space," says Topolsky. "But that competitor is not the Tablet S."