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By 24 February 2014 | Categories: news

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Sony has swung for the fences, showcasing its new 10” Android tablet that is not just waterproof, but also beats the iPad Air (review) at its own game, since it comes in at 6.4 mm thick (a full 1.1 mm thinner than Apple’s tablet). The tablet will apparently weigh in lighter as well, at 426 g, as compared  with the iPad Air’s 478 g.

Sony’s achievement on this front is even more notable as it is boasting a 10.1” tablet, whereas Apple had the smaller dimensions of a 9.7” device to work with.

Granted, it could be argued that at this point we are splitting hairs; how light is extremely light anymore? Nonetheless, it does make the Xperia Z2 one of the thinnest and lightest tablets we have heard of to date; and, like jockeys and supermodels, in the mobile tablet world, thinner and lighter is still considered better.

Compromises and compatriots

The Xperia Z2 does not boast a Retina level display, but rather a full HD (1920 x 1080 with 221 ppi) Triluminous one; the same technology used in Sony’s TVs.

However, one thing the Z2 can lay claim to that the iPad Air cannot is that the tablet will apparently be, like its predecessor, able to shrug off the odd dunk in the bathtub. More usefully (and likely) though, it will be able to weather a beverage being spilled on it; thus sparing users the heartbreak of seeing their shiny and expensive device rendered into a soggy brick by a moment of clumsiness.

While its frame might be reminiscent of Kate Moss, its specs remind of William Wallace/Braveheart. Helping cry freedom from sluggishness is the inclusion of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 801 processor clocking in at 2.3 GHz; and, making Apple seem like a 14th century landowner, 3 GB of memory to the iPad Air’s one. Keeping the tablet firmly in the modern day and offering users a break from Android’s woeful fragmentation is the inclusion of the latest version of the OS - KitKat (Android 4.4.2).

Battle lines

The good news for South African users is that the tablet has been slated (pun intended) to make an appearance in the second quarter of this year, which means that the inevitable Android and Apple head-to-head between the Xperia Z2 and the iPad Air is not too far off now. Its local price though is still to be confirmed, and should reveal whether Sony intends to bring a knife to a sword fight  - or a cannon.

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