Sony Tablet P
We review the Sony's other Android 3.2 powered Tablet PC - the Sony Tablet P. We take a look at what makes the ‘P’ stand out from the crowd... And what’s just freaky about it.
By Chris Messenger | Published 16/08/2012
Innovative. Different to ever other tablet
Portable. Easily fits in your pocket
Screens are bright and responsive
Fast mobile data support
Apps are severely lacking. Scaling issues
Dual screen browsing hit and miss
Overpriced. Usual Sony pricing
Poor sound performance
The outer casing folds in half the way a Nintendo DS or a 90’s personal organiser.
By now you’ve probably detected that Tablet PCs are ‘pretty much of a muchness’, with the main area of diversity being the logo on the outer casing. It seems oddly comforting, then, that the Sony P Tablet and its counterpart, the S Tablet, look and feel different from the rest. We take a look at what makes the ‘P’ stand out from the crowd...And what’s just freaky about it.
The first major difference you will notice about the Sony P is the screen. The outer casing folds in half the way a Nintendo DS or a 90’s personal organiser might, this instantly makes the P look travel friendly and distinguishes it from almost every other Tablet PC out there.
There are in fact two screens on the P, both of which measure 5.5 inches; this allows the benefit of having a 11-inch screen without the drawback of making the Tablet large and cumbersome. Both screens have a high resolution of 1024 x 480 pixels, which is exceptionally good for a 5-inch screen. In addition, both screens can display separate content, which is easier if you’re the sort of computer user who has several programs running at any given time.
The P employs a 1GHz processor, which is pretty standard among Tablet PCs. It also makes use of a full 1GB of RAM, which is a plus. The only drawback is that Sony, for reasons all of their own, equipped the P with only 4GB of hard drive. Given that other Tablets in the P’s price range are regularly hitting the 32GB mark (or at least 16GB) this is the first real disappointment offered by the P.
The P is bang up to date, OS-wise however, running Android 3.2 and easily connects via WiFi, Bluetooth and 3G.
NOTE: This review was written in February of 2012 – what a difference a few months makes! Now, you can get a Sony ‘P’ for £280, a massive drop in price and a chance for the ‘P’ to at least compete. However, we still don’t think it represents great value for money.
At a spry 372g, the P is probably the lightest Tablet yet designed and, with its innovative shape, it is easily the most portable. For those of you looking for a travel computer, smaller than a laptop that will provide Internet connectivity and limited working functions, look no further.
At a spry 372g, the P is probably the lightest Tablet yet designed and, with its innovative shape, it is easily the most portable.
The P is also the first ever two-screen Tablet PC, a model that we’d like to see a lot more of. It is very efficient, both for transport and the simultaneous use of multiple programs. The P, in this case, could stand for ‘pioneer’. The design is extremely practical yet innovative, trendy and still user-friendly.
The laughable 4GB hard drive is the single biggest let down here, with a stronger hard drive, this could be a contender for the best Tablet PC around, instead its like a movie that grips you all the way through only to suffer from a disappointing ending.
The price goes well over the £500 mark (and ends up a stone’s throw away from £600), which is simply too much money for a Tablet with only 4GB of memory. If Sony knocked £150 off of the price and beefed the hard drive up so it could at least compete, this would quite possibly be our most favouritest Tablet PC in the whole wide world (insert cheesy grin here). Sadly, the end feel is that of a slightly missed opportunity.
One more thing. Sony: If people are willing to shell out nearly £600 for this Tablet, don’t you think it would be nice if you included a mini USB cable to save us buying our own? Way to be stingy, guys.
What Other Users Say
Well, Amazon.co.uk only has three customer reviews for the ‘P’ – only one of which is especially positive. ‘Acteon’ (2/5) called it “a lovely looking gadget” but derided the lack of app support and the user interface (“I also own an iPad, and it quickly became apparent which I wanted to use more often”) ‘T.M’ (2/5) criticized the WiFi rather heavily and complained that he lost his when it fell out of his pocket on the beach!
This is a remarkable machine and, if Sony learns from its mistakes here, could be the prototype for a brand new type of Tablet that conquers the world. But, with a sky high asking price and a substantially-less-than-perfect interior, the price tag is simply too high to be considered good value.
Don’t get us wrong, it’s a damn good computer, but for that price it needs to be great. We recommend its counterpart, the ‘S’, instead.