Speed, power and a beautiful screen; Sony's new tablet has it all, and is the best 10.1in Android tablet available
10.1 in 1,920×1,200 display, 439g, 2.3GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 801, 3.00GB RAM, 25GB disk, Android 4.2
It’s hard to believe, but Sony has managed to make a tablet that is both thinner and lighter than the iPad Air. Apple’s tablet amazed us when it launched, at just 7.5mm thick and weighing only 469g, but Sony’s new Xperia Z2 tablet trumps it; it’s just over a millimetre thinner than Apple’s tablet, and, at 439g, even lighter still.
It’s also a lovely object. The Z2 Tablet feels much more like a high-quality product than the plastic-fantastic Galaxy Tab Pro, and approaches the iPad Air for sheer desirability. You may not like the plastic rear as much as the iPad Air’s all-metal finish, but this helps contribute to the tablet’s light weight, and at least the plastic feels durable. You may also miss the glass rear of the Tablet Z, but the Z2 Tablet is more comfortable to hold than its rather hard-edged predecessor. It’s still waterproof, too, and Sony has usefully managed to waterproof the headphone socket without needing a fiddly plastic flap.
Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet Performance
The Z2 Tablet is powered by one of the most powerful mobile chips currently available; the Qualcomm Snapdragon 801. This has four cores running at 2.3GHz, and the tablet runs Android 4.4 better than any Android tablet we have ever seen. It feels far quicker than the Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro, which despite its up-to-the-minute Exynos 5 Octa processor, suffers from some stutter and lag. You notice the Z2’s power when opening and closing applications and flicking through homescreens, but even an Android tablet this powerful can’t match the iPad Air for sheer uninterrupted smoothness; we still noticed an occasional hesitation here and there.
Despite this, the tablet still has excellent web browsing performance. It renders pages quickly, and there’s almost no lag at all when scrolling around. The Z2 Tablet certainly copes better with complicated web pages than the Galaxy Tab Pro, which was disappointingly hesitant. The Z2 Tablet also has huge 3D performance. In the 3DMark benchmark, we saw 18,883 in the Unlimited test, which is comfortably the highest score we’ve seen from a tablet. As we expected, 3D driving game Real Racing 3 ran beautifully smoothly at maximum detail levels.
|Qualcomm Snapdragon 801
|Processor clock speed
|Total storage capacity
|Optical drive type
Ports and Expansion
|Wired network ports
|Wireless networking support
|PC Card slots
|Supported memory cards
|microSD card slot
|Operating system restore option
|one year RTB