Hot on the heels of the mock-up leak for the PlayStation certified "S1," Engadget has caught wind of another Android-powered Sony tablet currently in the works. Continuing with the theme of wacky design, the device is rumored to be a clamshell-style, dual-touchscreen device. Each display will measure 5.5 inches, and when closed, the device has a cylindrical form factor reminiscent of the giant crayon-shaped calculator I had when I was 5.

Sony S2 draft2

Engadget's sources say that it will be running a custom version of Honeycomb with apps that are optimized for the dual screens. Google Maps is supposed to display a map on one screen while showing turn-by-turn navigation instructions or Streetview on the other. For Gmail, it's the standard list of messages on one screen and the selected message on the other. The S2 will also be centered around Sony's Qriocity media service, allowing users to stream all the movies and music they could ever want straight to their tablet. Unfortunately, there is no talk of PlayStation integration as of yet.

Despite the questionable design decisions, the rumored hardware specs show this tablet will be anything but a slouch. It is said to be packing a Tegra 2 chipset, radios for Wi-Fi and 3G data connections, and front- and rear-facing cameras. Lending credence to the rumors, Sony filed a patent application for an "electronic book with enhanced features" in early 2010. This doesn't mean the S2 will definitely be hitting a store near you, but it does seem to boost hopes, doesn't it?

Well, don't get too excited. Engadget's sources within Sony claim that the S2 is getting a pretty frosty reception internally, some going so far as to call it a "dog." The hesitance is understandable - the whole thermos look isn't very appealing and hardly seems practical. Imagine trying to type on this thing as it rocks back and forth on a desk or table. Despite the internal discord, it is said that Sony plans to ship the S2 prior to the holidays with a $699 price tag. While it may be just the right shape to fit into a stocking, I can't say I'm putting it on my wish-list just yet.

Source: Engadget