Sony announced its new Xperia Z2 Tablet here at Mobile World Congress, so we swung by their booth on the show floor to get a hands-on with the next tablet flagship. This is the successor to the Tablet Z, now more fully aligned with the leading Sony phone in both name and hardware.
The first thing you notice when you pick up the Z2 Tablet is that it is thin. Crazy thin - 6.4mm, in fact, thinner than the previous tablet, thinner than any phone you're likely to get your hands on in the United States, thinner than the iPad Air by more than a millimeter, and lighter as well at only 425 grams.
Sony is showing off its own take on Google Glass at Mobile World Congress, and while the current name, the SmartEyeglass concept, doesn't flow as well as Google's, it already looks less weird. The company has managed to cram an accelerometer, compass, brightness sensor, embedded camera, microphone, and other bits of hardware inside a bulkier but otherwise normal-looking frame.
The company first unveiled the product at CES, and details remain scarce. Unlike Glass, this device uses a separate controller with a touchpad, power, navigation, and camera buttons. Like Glass, the Sony SmartEyeglass concept aims to provide non-intrusive notifications and useful information right before your eyes.
Along with a new flagship phone, Sony has raised the curtain on a new high-end tablet at Mobile World Congress. Like previous Sony designs, the Xperia Z2 Tablet takes its name, looks, and general hardware from the Z2 smartphone. The most impressive part is the Snapdragon 801 processor, which should be able to take all comers with its 2.26Ghz quad-core architecture.
The rest of the tablet is lagging a little bit when compared to newer offerings from Samsung. The screen is a 10.1-inch panel with a 1080p resolution - not bad, but for a flagship tablet Sony really could have pushed the pixels higher.
We've been seeing quite a lot of Sony's "Xperia Sirius," and it looks like Sony is ready to take the wraps off of it here at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. As expected, it's the flagship successor to the Z1, somewhat disappointingly named the Xperia Z2. Sony is also announcing the Xperia M2 today, a more midrange phone with Sony's standard industrial design and dual SIM card slots.
The Z2 improves on the Z1 with a 5.2-inch 1080p LCD display, matching LG's G2. Sony is pushing its Triluminous and X-reality display technologies to say it's better than the competition. Underneath is the best-in-class Snapdragon 801 processor running at 2.3Ghz.
Sony's SmartBand is a little more than a fitness tracker, but it's not a smart watch either. This device ties into the Sony Lifelog app to track your movement and connect the dots between your physical and digital activities. Interested? The SmartBand and Lifelog app are hitting the market in over 60 countries next month. That means only a few more weeks of using your dumb brain to remember things that happen to you.
At this point pretty much everything about Sony's next flagship phone has been spoiled except for the name. The Xperia D6503 "Sirius," which will almost certainly be getting a much less interesting title when it's officially revealed, has had multiple large leaks. A new 12-minute video shows off pretty much everything about the included software.
The video comes from the same YouTube user who posted the last big leak, and it looks like it's the same phone running the same software. This time he's kindly shown us the outer casing, which uses Sony's standard industrial design adapted into a slightly more rounded shell.
A bit of new information out of @evleaks points to possible specs for the still unannounced Sony Xperia Tablet Z2. The first one was a big departure for Sony's past tablet designs, but it was also a good device. If the leaked specs are to be believed, the sequel is going to be a lot like the first one – a little too much like it, perhaps.
Let's forget about KitKat for a moment. A large number of Android devices out there still need an update to the latest version of Jelly Bean, and while many of them will never receive such an OTA, four of Sony's handsets are receiving one this week. The company is rolling out an update to the Xperia T, TX, SP, and V.
In addition to Android 4.3, the OTA brings updated Sony pre-installed apps, more integration between the company's media apps, and the launch of the new "Xperia Themes" custom interface. These are joined with the security enhancements that typically come with newer versions of software.
Note to cell phone leakers: please try and get decent video before you send your information out into the world. A YouTube video spotted by XperiaBlog does indeed seem to be Sony's latest phone, or at least a phone that looks a lot like their previous hardware and seems to be sporting a new version of the company's Android UI. Unfortunately there's little to be seen of the hardware itself.
What we can see is a short tour of some of the new interface functions on what is purported to be the D6503 "Sirius," expected to succeed the Xperia Z1 whenever it's announced.
So this smartwatch thing... it isn't going anywhere anytime soon (except maybe your wrist). It's pretty clear that, even if people don't actually want them, manufacturers want people to have them. We might as well give in now, because it's happening.
But I digress. This isn't about being "forced" to buy new technology. This is about getting said tech for fewer monies than some retailers would have you pay. If you're ready to hop aboard the smartwatch bandwagon, here's your chance to get Sony's newest offering for a mere $140. Yes, that's only $10 less than a Pebble costs, but I'm not going to tell you what to buy.