Consumer electronics giant Sony’s S1 and S2 tablets, powered by Google’s Android operating system, have been revealed in greater detail through the release of a teaser video showcasing the products’ design and capabilities. The 80-second video, the second in a series of five, shows a high-tech Rube Goldberg-like contraption activating various features on the tablets. The first photos and video of the devices being held came from the Website Notebook Italia, which the organization took at a private event in Italy.
Both tablets are WiFi and WAN (3G/4G) compatible and users can not only browse the Internet or check email but they can also access digital content including videos, games and books through Sony’s network services. The S1 has a 9.4-inch display for browsing the Web and media content. In addition, its off-center of gravity design is engineered for stability and ease of grip.
The smaller S2 tablet comes with two 5.5-inch displays that can be folded for increased portability. In contrast to rival tablets, its dual screen presentation and usability allows its displays to be combined and used as a large screen or for different functions such as playing video on one screen while showing control buttons on the other.
Through Qriocity music and video services, users can access rich video and music content. Also, through the company’s PlayStation Suite, users can access first generation PlayStation titles. Additionally, users can download ebook content from Reader Store and use both tablets as digital reading devices.
The S1 uses infrared technology and works as universal remote controls for a variety of AV devices. Users can perform functions like turning on their TVs, changing the channel and adjusting the volume. Also, through DLNA functionality on the tablet, users can “throw” personal content to large screen televisions or music to wireless speakers.
“Android 3.0 is a new version of the Android platform with a new holographic user interface that is designed from the ground up for devices with larger screen sizes, particularly tablets,” said Andy Rubin, senior vice president of mobile at Google. “I’m excited about the Sony tablet as it will further spur the development of applications and network offerings which users are looking for.”
In 2010, Sony launched the network platform Qriocity, which connects many of Sony’s network-enabled devices, and has been expanding its services into global markets. Also, Sony Computer Entertainment has been providing various contents and services for PlayStation users through PlayStation Network, which now has more than 75 million registered accounts (as of March 20, 2011) worldwide.
Simultaneously, Sony said it would continue to announce various devices that leverage these services. Starting in early 2011, Sony Computer Entertainment announced the next-generation portable entertainment system (codename NGP) while Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications brought “Xperia Play” to the market. The company said it is introducing the tablets to deliver an entertainment experience which integrates hardware with network services that deliver rich content.
With the establishment of Consumer Products and Services Group in April 2011, Sony will also focus on accelerating the development of innovative next generation products and aim to deliver a new lifestyle by strengthening the integration of hardware and network services.