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Sony’s water-resistant Tablet Z coming June

By Leigh D. Stark | 11:23 am 14/05/2013

Tablets don’t usually feature resistance to the elements, but if Sony’s next Xperia tablet is anything like its smartphone sibling, we’ll be expecting good things.

Announced for pre-order in Australia, Sony’s next Android-based tablet will feature similar weather resistance to its Xperia Z smartphone, incorporating a dust- and water-resistant build, as well as that minimalist “OmniBalance” design that we saw used on the mobile, too.

“Designed with the modern day consumer in mind, the Xperia Tablet Z has received an incredibly positive response since it was first announced at MWC,” said Sony Australia’s Marketing Manager, Jun Yoon.

“Combined with being water and dust-resistant, the Xperia Tablet Z is able to be used by anyone with any lifestyle.”

The water-resistance is apparently good enough to survive one metre of freshwater for half an hour, although in fairness, we don’t know too many people who have a lifestyle where they can afford to sit in rivers or lakes and surf the web with tablets on their laps. Maybe that’s just us.

Sony’s Xperia Tablet Z does look to be one of the first Android tablets released in Australia to feature built-in 4G LTE connectivity, with NFC thrown in too, allowing it to sync with NFC-capable speakers and headphones easily, and then stream music through its hyper fast mobile connection.

The screen sits at the typical Android size of 10.1, up from the 9.7 inch panels Sony used in previous tablets, though now sports a 1920×1200 display, slightly higher than Full HD’s 1920×1080. Inside, it’s a quad-core processor clocked at 1.8GHz, Android 4.1 “Jelly Bean,” and between 16 and 32GB storage.

Like it’s smartphone brother, cameras are included, and there’s a 2.2 megapixel front camera for video conferencing and selfies, while an 8.1 megapixel camera sits at the back.

All of these specs sit inside a tablet that will be 6.9mm thin, feature a battery capable of lasting up to eight hours, and will still feature an infrared port, so here’s hoping Sony has kept that universal remote feature from the old tablets put out by the company.

Pricing comes in three options, with the WiFi only 16GB fetching $539, WiFi 32GB for $649, or the 16GB WiFi/4G model being made available for $679. All models will feature a microSD slot – like the phone itself – to expand that memory beyond the initial size.

Pre-orders start now, with availability on June 6, though if you prefer the special treatment, there will also be a limited edition set available from $1499, which includes the Tablet Z, an Xperia Z smartphone, and a pair of MDR1 NFC headphones in a nice plush fancy box. Only 50 of these limited edition bundles are available, however, so if you want it, you’ll need to get in early.

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