Sony’s tremendously thin Xperia Z2 Tablet, announced in February at Mobile World Congress, is now up for pre-sale through the company’s online store. Most new tablets right now are coming from Samsung, so anyone looking for an alternative can opt for Sony’s new device. The Xperia Z2 Tablet is available in both 16GB and 32GB iterations, priced at $499.99 and $599, respectively. In-store sales will begin at participating Sony Store locations on May 4.
We actually had the opportunity to get our hands-on the Xperia Z2 Tablet all the way back at the end of February, and came away impressed by the device’s solid construction and robust feature set. That large bezel leaves a lot to be desired, but you get a different sense of quality holding the Z2 Tablet compared to, say, even then most recent Note Pro, which itself was no slouch.
Sony’s Z2 Tablet sports a 10.1-inch Full HD display, 3GB of RAM, 2.3GHz Snapdragon 801 processor, Android 4.4 KitKat, 6000mAh battery (with Stamina Mode) and an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera (2-megapixel front). There’s also S-Force Front Surround audio along with digital noise canceling support, Bluetooth 4.0, and NFC; the entire package has been waterproof rated IP55/58, too, so you can read your favorite book while in the tub (but not while scuba diving). In addition, customers get access to Sony’s PlayMemories Online, Sony Entertainment Network and the tablet is PlayStation certified, meaning it will connect to a Dualshock 3 controller.
The tablet has been at our office for a few days now, and it feels quite incredible. Some might think the design is boring, but it’s familiar for the Xperia brand. It’s remarkably thin at 0.25 inches, and very light at just 15.40 oz; the back is a soft touch, while each side is flanked by brushed aluminum, so it’s easy to hold onto no matter if you’re in landscape or portrait. For how thin and light it is, the Xperia Z2 Tablet feels durable—there’s a bit of flex, but otherwise it’s solidly engineered.
There are hardly any buttons or ports, giving the device a sleek and stealthy look. On the left side you have the sleep/wake/power button, and just beneath that there’s a volume rocker. A microSD slot sits at the top (protected by a little flap door), while the bottom has a 3.5mm headphone jack. Also on the bottom there’s a magnetic strip, which is designed to work with Sony’s Charging Dock DK39, allowing you to easily dock the device when you need a quick jolt of battery.
To top off the deal, Sony is also giving customers access to six blockbuster movies with a purchase of the Xperia Z2 Tablet, including Captain Phillips (excellent) and American Hustle (haven’t seen it). Buyers also get a 30-day free trial of Music Unlimited service, and eight PlayStation Mobile games. That’s not a bad way to get buyers started.
You’ll be able to get the Xperia Z2 Tablet in either black or white—we have the black and it looks terrific. Once we have the opportunity to put the device through its paces we’ll report back. Based on looks and feel alone, however, we already like what we see. If you’re not quite so pumped on what Samsung’s churning out, the Xperia Z2 Tablet from Sony isn’t a bad alternative. Pre-order it now, or check it out in-store starting May 4.