What are you looking for in a tablet these days? Do you want a tablet with all the high-end specs to provide you with all that high-end performance? Do you want one that is as thin and as light as can be? Do you want one that'll survive the accidental dunk in the pool? Putting ticks in all those checkboxes is the Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet, which appropriately builds upon what we had already seen in the first Sony Xperia Tablet.
The Thin and Light Waterproof Tablet
Under the hood, we find a quad-core 2.3GHz, Snapdragon 801 processor, a full 3GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, microSD expansion, Adreno 330 graphics, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth 4.0. Around the back, you'll find an 8.1MP autofocus camera (sans flash), plus a 2.2MP 1080p shooter on the front. The Xperia Z2 Tablet's 10.1-inch 1920 x 1200 TFT touchscreen continues with Sony's Triluminous and X-Reality Engine technology. We're reviewing the Wi-Fi model, but there is an LTE-equipped variant as well.
Sony has led the way with the waterproof schtick and they're keeping that up with the IP58 certification on this tablet. This means you have to deal with those silly flaps to get to the microSD and micro-USB ports and the 6000mAh Li-Po battery is non-removable.
The Xperia Z2 Tablet Video Review
My initial impressions of the Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet were positively. The 6.4mm profile is truly astounding and it barely tips the scales at a mere 426 grams. Compare that to the nearly 800 grams of the Dell Venue 11 Pro we reviewed last week. But not everything is great in the world of Xperia. Watch our video review to see what I mean.
The performance on the Xperia Z2 Tablet is very snappy and although I'm not as big a fan of Walkman, Album and other Sony-specific apps, I did like the continuation of the Mini Apps and the different camera modes can offer some fun. The display is in line with other Sony Xperia products, meaning that what it lacks in punch and saturation, it makes up for in its "realistic" presentation of natural colors. Some may call it muted, but that's only if you're coming from something like a Super AMOLED screen.
The biggest problem with this tablet, and it's a doozy, is just how much it is able to flex under pressure. As I say in the video above, this might give you some confidence that it'll survive some mild bending in your backpack, but I'd like to feel a little more confident that it won't suddenly snap on me either.
MEGATechie Alpha Dog or MEGATechie Omega Dead?
There is a lot to like here. You can't complain about the kind of performance that you'll get out of the Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet nor can you really complain about its thickness or weight. Everything is snappy and the UI optimizations are mostly appreciated. That being said, I'm not so sure about those extra wide bezels, as they take away from the overall slickness of the product and the flaps covering the microSD and micro-USB ports can feel rather flimsy. But that flex! I just can't get over that flex.
Unless Sony decides to implement some flexible display technology in an Xperia Z3 tablet, I'd really rather not have my tablet bend that much under so little pressure. The Sony Xperia Z2 tablet in its current 16GB WiF-only configuration sells for about $500, placing it right in line with other flagship 10.1-inch tablets like the Samsung Galaxy TabPRO 10.1. Considering how non-flagship tier tablets have dramatically improved in quality and reduced in price, I may consider a cheaper alternative if it's going to bend it like Beckham.