Double screens to amaze us.. and one large screened one too:
Sony have just announced at an event in Tokyo that they will be launching two new Android 3.0 tablets onto the world later this year.
What we have here are the romantically named S1 and S2 Android tablets, well, these are their current names, but I suspect that at launch they will bear rather more appealing names, well, I hope so at least.
The S1 is a large screened tablet(9.4 inch) which will come with two cameras, one rear facing, the other, logically, front facing, so you can indulge in the most extraordinary video chats with this baby. I have not yet worked out quite why anyone would want two video cameras on their devices, but I assume it meets some deep seated need that I am not aware of yet.
The S1 will be completely focused on supporting Qriocity – Sony’s music, games, ebooks, and videos on demand service that’s just been launched in Europe- and will come preloaded with Playstation integration.
One nice touch with the S1 is that it comes complete with an infra-red sender, so you may use it to control all manner of house hold gadgets…TVs and so on…. Nice thought, eh?
And for reading ebooks?
All well and good, but will it be any use as an ereader? Simple answer is yup, it will be. It also comes with the Sony ereader software, so sorting out your ebooks on it will be as easy as on any dedicated Sony ereader, thus Sony are crossing over to the current trend of ereaders being tablets and vice versa.
As this device is about the same size and weight as an iPad, Sony have taken a lot of trouble to sort out the comfort in use problems of the iPad, and designed it in such a way that the weight is placed off centre and over the users hand and wrist, giving the feeling that it is much lighter, this they call the “wrap” form. It is described as follows:
The tablet’s “wrap” design is meant to remind the owner of something personal in the way that it mimics an open paperback stuffed into the back pocket, or a magazine folded backward upon itself such that only a single page is visible to read. A design that also gives the tablet’s display enough angle to comfortably touch-type when placed on a table. It also makes one-handed operation a bit less taxing on the wrist by shifting the center of gravity to the bulbous edge of the device as in our mock-up above. A trick meant to reduce the torque that makes 10-inch tablets uncomfortable to hold one-handed for an extended length of time (when reading an ebook, for example). So even though the S1 is about the same size and weight as Apple’s iPad, we’re told that it feels lighter since most of the weight is shifted directly into the user’s hand and over the wrist. Naturally, the screen UI rotates allowing for right- or left-handed use and we’re told that it’s still comfortable to hold in landscape mode where the bulging edge is typically held at the top.
The tablet itself, we’re told, is 100 percent focused on Qriocity, It comes preloaded with Sony PS One games, a Bravia Media Remote, and PlayStation integration
Further, it has a touch screen wireless and 3G connectivity and is in all respects a very advanced bit of gear, which given the rumored price it should be. The rumours say it will go for about USD 600, so not really something you would buy without serious thought first.
Now this is a weird one, it has two screens, relatively small (5.5-inch 1,024 x 480 pixel displays) which are built in a clam form, so you can simply click it shut and dump it in your pocket, much as with your mobile phone.
Sony takes advantage of the two screens with a custom book-style UI layout for its e-reader app, split keyboard and messaging displays for email, and split display and game controllers for PS One gaming. Both the S1 and S2 are PlayStation Certified, support DLNA, and are WiFi and 3G/4G “compatible” according to Sony.
Oh, all of this will set you back about USD 700!
So, two rather interesting devices coming soon to a store in your town – well that is if you live in Japan or America, Europe and the rest of us will have to wait a bit longer it seems before we can get our hands on either of these two marvels.
Well, obviously both these devices are primarily intended as tablets, rather than ereaders – Sony have a complete range of dedicated and very good ereaders after all, but for those who simply have to have as many functions as possible united into one device, and are prepared to pay for this convenience, and are not worried by the problems of short battery endurance and the impossibility of reading in any bright sunlight situation, then either of these will be very interesting devices to own I feel.
Just to show you what they look like in action:
So, there you have them……..
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What are your views on such devices? Are they the future for ereading or not? Do let us know your feelings about this subject.