Sony unveils 10in waterproof Xperia Tablet Z

Sony Tablet Z

Sony continues to come out all guns blazing in 2013 with the launch of a high-end Android tablet to challenge the likes of Apple and Samsung.

The Xperia Tablet Z joins the firm's flagship family of mobile devices and will sport a 10.1in display with WUXGA (1920 x 1200) resolution and Sony's Mobile Bravia Engine.

In an attempt to attract users with its design, Sony has whittled down the thickness to 6.9mm. This makes the device considerably thinner than popular rivals such as the iPad (9.4mm) and the Google Nexus 10 (8.9mm).

Sony also claims the device is waterproof, much like its sister the Xperia Z smartphone. With a weight of 495g, the Tablet Z is a little over 100g heavier than smaller tablets such as the Nexus 7.

The device will be powered by a Qualcomm 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon chipset paired with a beefy 2GB of RAM. There will be 32GB of internal storage and microSD card support. Out-of-the-box, the tablet will ship with Android 4.1.

Other key features include support for NFC and LTE, and an 8.1 megapixel Exmor R camera.

It remains to be seen whether Sony's choice to continue targeting the 10in market is a wise move, as this is an area dominated by the iPad.

This is Sony's third foray into the tablet market after the Sony Tablet S and Tablet P failed to attract users due to high pricing. With the Tablet Z packing high-end specifications, pricing could also be a stumbling block to mass adoption.

Other manufacturers have had success in the 7in category, with Google's Nexus 7 and Amazon's Kindle Fire HD devices proving particularly popular. Even Apple bowed to market pressure to launch an 7.9in iPad mini at the end of 2012.

Sony is in dire need of a "hit" product such as the iPhone or Galaxy S3 smartphone. The cash-strapped Japanese firm announced last week that it will sell its New York HQ to raise $1.1 billion.

Khidr Suleman is the Technical Editor at IT Pro, a role he has fulfilled since March 2012. He is responsible for the reviews section on the site  - so get in touch if you have a product you think might be of interest to the business world. He also covers the hardware and operating systems beats. Prior to joining IT Pro, Khidr worked as a reporter at Incisive Media. He studied law at the University of Reading and completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism and Online Writing at PMA Training.