For clarity I have the 16GB 3G/LTE version and purchased direct from Sony as Amazon did not have this version available at the time of ordering.
I was looking for a 10" tablet to replace my Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 which broke (dropped - oops) but did not fancy another Samsung having tried several of their offerings previously. The Sony has some unique features but above all I was taken in by the design and weight, which in my opinion puts this tablet at the very top of the tree in terms of desirability.
I can't emphasise enough just how stunning the hardware is. Sony has really upped their game. Forget their two previous attempts (Sony Tablet S and the Xperia Tablet S) which were poor and do not compare to this new version which has improved in almost every area.
-Superb 1080p HD screen - movies look immense on this probably helped by the clever Bravia stuff going on!
-Premium build, best design around, so thin and light
-The sound quality really surprised me, very good with four speakers.
-Lots of accessories available at launch. I also ordered the Charging Dock which is very stylish and also well made and allows for one-handed removal and attachment. Also works with the Sony case attached.
-It's waterproof - Great but I won't be dunking it in my bath....nice to have
-IR Port-Can be used as a universal remote control. It actually works really well too
-Not sure about this yet as it's early days however initial observations are a little disappointing. Battery drains rapidly during extended gameplay, more than my previous Samsung by about 10-15% I would say. I will come back on this after a few weeks
-Some lag when switching between home-screens which is surprising, but my system is heavily loaded with widgets so this may be the cause.
I have owned and used many tablets in recent years, but have not experienced as much excitement or enjoyment for a new device since I took delivery of the original 7" Samsung Tablet (P1000) way back in November 2010. Yes, its a premium price but for that you get the best designed, best featured tablet available right now and will not be disappointed.
Battery life after two weeks use appears to have settled down. My initial observations have proved to be correct with battery life not as good as equivalent Samsungs I have used. This has to be justified against the fact that the Sony does have a full HD (1080p) screen whereas the Samsung's I have used did not. I have kept it at five stars on the basis that future update may improve battery life and the rest of the tablet is genuinely awesome.
on 11 November 2013
I chose the 16GB Xperia Z over the iPad Air for several reasons 1) Great as the latest iPad is, I just didn't want an iPad as my 1st tablet (I had iPhone 1 & 4, I'm not anti Apple, where would smartphone & tablet design/spec be without Apple) 2) Sony has a great design & product rep 3) the Xperia Z is quite quick enough for what I want to use it for, if mobile gaming had been a priority then I would have bought the iPad Air 4) being able to expand the storage by another 16, 32 or 64GB is hugely useful allowing me to buy the 16GB Xperia at £329 and add a SanDisk Ultra 32GB at £18-20 or the 64GB at £37, a MUCH CHEAPER and more flexible option than buying a fixed iPad option 5) I have a HTC phone & other devices which all require a mini USB charger so it's more convenient if all my devices use the same charger!
The screen is great with rich colours and good definition, the keyboard is very nice to use, the latest software update includes being able to use a 64GB SD card, it is light, well made and looks beautiful.
The waterproofing will be useful to some, who knows how often a tablet has a glass or mug of something spilled over it, yes, it is bit annoying to have to open up ports for charging or headphones etc but I have a Sony RX100 digital camera which also has a sealed charging port so perhaps it's a Sony thing!
I also bought the £9.99 black carbon fibre case which is great VFM and will protect my Xperia Z when I take out of the house.
UPDATE: 20 Jan 2014, still love this Sony tablet, now have 10 films, loads of photos and 20GB of lossless Wav music on the 64GB micro SD card. The Walkman music app plays music very nicely indeed through my brilliant AKG 550 headphones (large, closed, an absolute bargain at approx £130) and also via my folding Sennheiser noise cancelling travel headphones. The Walkman music app has a graphic equaliser allowing full tone adjustment.
on 2 April 2015
Bought this to sort of bridge the gap before the Z4 tablet comes out since I really needed to replace my Apple shitePad which has limped along since about a year after buying it. I almost bought the Z2 before being convinced that there was no point in paying more than £400 now for an item that will be reduced in price in May with the Z4's arrival and still have to spend another £4-500 on that.
I've never bought a used item before but ultimately realised that with this being intended to be a temporary replacement, there would be no harm in purchasing an item from Amazon Warehouse (i.e. ex-returns / ex-display models). I was worried about scratches and scuffs and was really reluctant to spend a large amount of money on something that I could end up resenting, to the point where I'd almost come full circle and was about to order new again. I reminded myself that if the saving was large enough, it would be all the more likely I could replace this tablet almost as soon as the Z4 tablet is released, so I went back to looking at used models.
I was tempted to go outside the Sony Xperia brand because I had the fallback of knowing I would hopefully be able to replace it in May if it didn't live up to expectations. But after looking at the equivalent Samsung and Asus tabs, despite them being slightly cheaper, I was ultimately drawn back to Xperia. I have used Xperia phones for a while now, currently the Z1 compact and it really is just a beautiful phone. It really makes it look like it's easy to make the Android OS look stunning but I've seen other big brands Android UI and it just doesn't look nearly as good IMO. The devices themselves are always well-built and sturdy. You never feel like you've just paid extra for branding (as I do with Apple).
Eventually I was looking at the Xperia Z Tablet vs the Z2 Tablet. I looked briefly at the Z3 Compact Tablet but decided I wanted a 10" tablet more or less for the sake of it. Anyway, after comparing the Z and Z2 side-by-side I saw that there wasn't a massive leap in the technology between the two generations. Some nice features, aye, but not enough to justify the price jump IMO (when comparing RRPs). So then I went into Amazon Warehouse and had a look at the different options available. I eventually decided that I wouldn't pay extra for mobile connectivity at this point as I intend to get the 4G Z4 Tablet in May anyway. I was able to get a 32GB Xperia Z for £190. The only downside was a point of personal preference: this is the white model when I'd have preferred black. I can't complain as a new Z2 32GB tablet would have been £379.99 (£389.99 for the white model actually; £400 for the 4G 16GB which is what I would have ordered if I hadn't given consideration to the fact I could make a big saving in view of the fact I should pay less since this is a temporary replacement).
In the description it simply said that it would be repackaged. Other items mentioned small scratches either on the screens or back of the tablet. Very few of all the items I looked at had photos. From memory, none of the Amazon Warehouse items did, so I felt like I was taking a risk despite the fact I wouldn't be paying full price. One of the other Amazon Warehouse items mentioned a small scratch and some damage to original packaging.
When my package arrived. I was disappointed to see that it was in original Xperia Z packaging and immediately assumed I had been sent one of the aforementioned items which also had some cosmetic damage to the device itself. I looked the tablet over so closely but I could not find a single marking. If I didn't know any better I'd say it was brand new. I didn't really look at the back so I suppose there could have been a mark there but I really don't care. I got a screen protector (Tech Armor Premium High Definition HD Clear Screen Protector for 10.1-inch Sony Xperia Z Tablet - Retail Packaging (Pack of 2)) on it right away and into this: MoKo(TM) Slim Cover Case for Sony Xperia Tablet Z 10.1 inch, ORANGE (with Smart Auto Sleep / Wake Feature, Flip Stand, and Integrated Elastic Hand Strap). I wasted the first of the two protectors since I'm useless at putting them on. Got a load of dust onto it right away, made it pointless to try applying it. Got the other on. I think there was two tiny little bubbles over two individual dust specs. It didn't really take away too much from the overall look, but once the tablet was on these bubbles weren't noticeable at all. Even with the back-light at its lowest brightness, they were impossible to see from comfortable viewing distance.
The tablet itself is really nippy. It moves from App to App very quickly. Download times (from what little I have downloaded) are fantastic. It has synced thousands of emails from my hotmail and work email in an astoundingly short space of time. YouTube vids load quickly. High quality video on the device looks fantastic. It's a beautiful screen. It's seriously making me wonder if I'll even need to replace this in May with the Z4. It's definitely given me a lot to think about at least. I'm so impressed with what I've got for only £190. To think I spent over £500 for the shitePad when it came out makes me feel a wee bit sick. My only gripe is (and it's probably more an iTunes issue tbh) that you can't directly sync content to non-Apple devices, at least natively. I'm sure there's a work-around which I'll look into now.
Summary: This tablet is fantastic and still packs a punch despite not being the latest in its series. Secondly, buying from Amazon Warehouse for the first time has been a positive experience and will probably do again in the right circumstance.
on 29 August 2013
'The best' is a relative term so I am not even going to go there. I am also not going to compare apples with oranges! Two different operating systems and not to be compared.
So, in terms of Android, 10" tablets, this one is in the top drawer. Very well manufactured. The design will be taste but to me its simply stunning. Weight is a bonus as is the slimness. Holding this tablet one handed is no problem at all.
Works on Android 4.2 so all is well there. Very fast CPU and graphics chip. The screen is truly amazing and that was the one point I was concerned about. I also own the Xperia Z mobile and the screen on that is also very good. Now in terms of a phone I have no idea why viewing angles should even come into any review, after all who looks at their phone from a 45degree angle?
With this in mind in terms of a tablet where more than one user can view it viewing angles do matter and the tablet is just great.
Its water resistant to a certain standard and will tolerate the owner using it in damp and even wet conditions. A strong word of caution. PLEASE read the manual, download it online and you will see that although Sony, very unwisely, advertise the table being used in a swimming pool, the tablet will NOT tolerate chemicals such as the ones used in a swimming pool or sea water. So many people think the water resistance is a licence to go diving, take underwater pictures, white water rapids etc. Its not really wise to do such things. I 'suggest' one sees this water resistance as protection against -accidental- contact with water rather than a feature for use under water (BTW the screen will NOT touch function under water in any case)
PLEASE do NOT remove the anti shatter film that is factory fitted. I also suggest one uses a screen saver to protect the anti shatter film from any damage. Ten minuets spent reading the on line manual may save the owner days or weeks of hassle should they make a mistake. This is wonderful technology but nothing is bullet proof.
This is my 6th tablet in two years and I can whole heartedly recommend this tablet.
01 01 2014 Update. Tablet now updated to Android 4.3 and it makes the tablet even better. I still think this is a superb tablet and for once will not be changing it any time soon. Simply a joy to hold and use.
on 11 November 2013
This tablet is very well made , .. it looks great , works great and has lots of nice features to make it a pleasure to use. For a full review to help you decide to buy or not i recomend reading the reviews on techradar , or cnet websites. HD films or music videos look great on the Xperia Z Tablet .. they sound great too especially with headphones plugged in and the settings / equalizer tweaked. Websites look really good when browsing , i found the free UC Browser HD from google play store to give the tablet the fastest browsing experience. I recommend this tablet if it fits within your budget .. yes it's quite expensive but it oozes quality and no doubt it will last you a long time. Sony has confirmed software updates for this tablet .. Android 4.3 in December 2013 ,.. and i'm sure KitKat 4.4 after that .. these updates will improve it's running & operation (even more) & add new features and maybe improve battery life , .. brilliant !!!
on 31 October 2013
This is my first tablet I've owned. I did some market research and ideally I wanted a versatile tablet that I could use for image presenting for uni, movies, music, games... everything you expect a tablet to offer. This tablet doesn't dissapoint.
The quality of the screen is fantastic. Sony have delivered a killer display as I expected. It's very bright and the colours are realistically vibrant.
Although this doesn't own next gen components, the speed of the device is very impressive. I usually use games to test this aspect and I've yet to find a game that has fps drops.
Aesthetically it looks beautiful, one of the best looking devices currently on the market. It's remarkably thin and fits very comfortably in your hands. The only complaint I have is that the speakers are mounted on the bottom sides. Usually this is where my hands support the tablet which results in a muffled quality. Not a major problem since you can use the tablet upside down.
I never normally test a camera on a tablet but it's decent enough. The important one is the camera on the front if you're going to do skype calls. I've never understood why tablet manufacturers don't develop the front camera more than the rear for tablets, I'm never going to find myself taking images with a 10" display. Even so if you do then the 8mp camera should suit your needs.
With the tablet being so thin I presumed the battery would be small. Contrary to many reviews here I think the battery level is sufficient, it will last a full day of general usage. I brought this tablet to replace my laptop, which had a 2 hour battery life (LOL) so I find the battery level impressive.
I believe Sony have excelled for once with this tablet. I take full advantage of the control hub app that allows you to control any infra-red device in the house.
Ignore the previous attempts Sony have failed on with the Xperia S tablet, they have redeemed themselves in my opinion.
on 26 June 2013
This tablet is incredible! I should add that, as well as the reviewer above, I didn't buy mine from Amazon, but Sony themselves.
I have the 32gb version.
Android in a (relatively) pure form: Sony haven't mucked about with Android too much on this tablet, and everything that they have changed from the original feels pretty useful. There's a Walkman app, Movies, Remote etc added but that's it really.
Thin and light: the thinness is incredible - this thing is thinner than my Nexus 4! On top of that, the lightness makes it easier to hold versus, say, an iPad. Good for reading, watching films or whatever - do it for longer!
Screen: there are 'better' 1080p screens out there, but this one reproduces colours brilliantly - think it's their Bravia engine stuff at work. Films, web and magazines all look really nice.
Browsing speed: the browser is not that responsive, and certainly doesn't feel as quick as the rest of the device. I put this down to Google, rather than Sony however.
Not quite the latest version of Android: It's 4.2.1 rather than 4.2.2... this isn't a huge deal but it's always nice to have the latest version when spending this kind of money. Sony have, to date, brought the Xperia Z, Xperia Ion and Xperia ZL - surely the Xperia Tablet Z will be updated soon too!
on 19 October 2013
Been an iPad user for some time now but wanted to move into Android. Looked for ages online until I stumbled upon the Xperia Tablet Z and fell in love with its looks straight away.
Owning it I'm not disappointed and there is far more to this tablet than its appearance. It's incredibly light in weight and a joy to hold for a long time. As a digital artist working on tablet the iPad can become a bit of a pain to hold for extended drawing sessions but the Xperia Z is light as a feather. And despite its thin, light design it still feels sturdy.
I was concerned moving from a pin sharp retina display, that the Xperia Z screen may be a let down. But not at all. Colours are warmer, the image pin sharp. And when viewing photos or movies the Bravia engine kicks in and increases the quality even further. Perfect for when I'm refining photos and artwork.
The system software is silky smooth and loads things really fast. There has been no issue with freezing or crashing.
The built in rear camera isn't great in lowlight condition without tinkering with the abundant settings available but they can still appear a little grainy. No problem with outdoor photos though with natural colour reproduction. The facing camera is superb for Skype and selfies, a marked improvement over the iPad camera.
Battery life is difficult to pin down as I've found it really depends on the app running. Graphic intensive games drain the battery quicker than say, YouTube or web browsing. I can usually get a days usage out of it when I'm not playing games for long periods of time.
Ultimately this is my favourite tablet and my favourite bit of technology I've owned for a long time. The design is amazing, modern and sleek and the software runs fast and smooth. All I hope for now is that the android store can catch up with the number of tablet dedicated apps like what can be found on iPad.
Oh, and I'm really wanting to try it in the bath but my head still can't accept the idea of dunking a tablet in water!
I had long considered the largest Kindle HDX but eventually decided to opt for the Xperia 10 for its superior and larger screen, its expandable storage and by no means least the Sony name; the relatively small difference in price made the Sony product a better buy. The fact that I own currently own and use other Sony products may have helped but I have had some poor experiences in the past (all with different Vaio products) that could just as easily pushed me in other directions. I opted for the 32GB version without 3G which I don't use or anticipate needing.
Out of the box, the battery appeared to be around 50% charged and quite quickly reached a claimed 94% charge (within an hour) but the charge light remained orange for more than hour before completion. Setting up a WiFi connection was quite easy although not without a couple of false starts where it picked up but also lost a nearby wireless router before finally confirming and maintaining connection. I don't usually have any issues with mobile phones and other devices finding that router from the exact same location and distance (1.2 meters or less).
Although some claim that there are issues with the needed re-charge time (several hours to overnight) and that usage time is not significantly longer than typical charge times, there are about as many who disagree and claim that both are reasonable and realistic. It is certainly true that a quad core processor may consume more power than a dual core version and that a bright, full HD screen will also use more than a 720p version especially if less bright. It should also be remembered that a new battery will hold its charge less well out of the box than it will after reasonable use and several re-charge cycles. It is therefore a matter of swings and roundabouts. So far, the longest re-charge time was circa 4 hours from about 15-20% levels.
As a tablet, it appears well- and solidly built and without the ability to flex top-to-bottom or side-to-side as some lesser models will. The screen rendition is extremely good, bright and with good contrast. Colours are reaslistic and pleasing and lack the wishy-washy effects common to some brands. Although a software update was found while charging, it was not clear precisely what was being updated. The tablet does not appear to be over-endowed with bloatware that some manufacturers insist upon or a pile of apps that few will ever need to use. This allows the device to be customised for its user's needs without the need to uninstall loads of stuff to free up the space for whatever is needed.
I have not tried the camera and it is likely to be rarely used as I have cameras and lenses of sufficient capability and variety for my needs which are more likely to be used as and when needed. Besides, serious photography with a more compact mobile phone may be more convenient and not look quite as ridiculous as it would using a 10-inch tablet.
Printed documentation in the box is minimal, a fairly commonplace choice, but a more detailed on-line user guide is available on Sony's web pages and in a PDF version for download. Initial impressions are that it will be a much-used and useful addition to my current 'computing' line-up.
I had expected that there might be a set of earphones and a screen cleaning cloth included but neither are. As Sony market a variety of in-ear phones, the omission is surprising although their possible choice might not be universally popular. A screen this large deserves to be kept clean and the wholesale price of a cleaning cloth is a small expense that could easily have been absorbed.
In the few days of use to date, the absense of an HDMI connector was not fully appreciated until that possibility was researched. There is a solution which involves purchase of an MHL adapter which connects to the micro-USB port and provides a full-size HDMI output socket. There is one by Sony and sold by Amazon which is designed for their devices.
Having tried to transfer data via OTG, and failing with a specific memory stick, I had tried various alternative methods and all succeeded. I tried OTG again with another memory stick and it then worked, but the second was USB 2.0-compatible and that first used was only USB 1.0. I had experienced similar failings in other situations where USB 2.0 devices worked when older ones did not. I shall retire the older memory sticks to avoid any further problems.
on 13 January 2014
I've had a few bad experiences with Sony product over the years, and swore never to buy them again, but this gem changed my mind.
The Nexus 10 is tempting, but do you really need that super-high resolution? No, it turns out, you don't. If like me your device is shared by all in a family then the screen soon gets smeared enough that super-high resolution doesn't make the difference.
What matters are features that make this better than the competition, and for me the key of these is the support for MHL output to allow direct wired connection to a TV over an HDMI connection. Although they are somewhat coy about making definitive statements, it seems that Google have deliberately prevented MHL output working on the Nexus 10 because they want to push ChromeCast, which you can't even buy in the UK, and requires you to have your content in the cloud anyway. If you want to play MP4s that you've got on the micro-SD card, then you're stuffed. The Xperia just does it properly. You need to buy an MHL to HDMI TV-Out Adapter, but they aren't expensive, and the flexibility you get is great. If you have a Sony TV then even more options are available, but the basic HDMI output is enough for me.
The rest of the hardware is good enough. The integrated IR blaster is handy, but let down by the poor setup function. The guesses it makes about the right IR codes based on manufacturer were way off (on a sample of 2), and while you can teach it by pointing your existing remote at it the receiver is pretty poor so it gets it wrong frequently. The battery life, on the other hand is good - easily enough for 8 hours a day of being passed round a family. The water-proof casing is nice to have, and fortunately not yet had to prove its credentials. The only downside of that is that the water-proof cover to the USB socket is just bound to wear out if repeatedly opened and shut, so the charging stand (not included) is a must, and Sony will fleece you for that. I just hope this tablet gets the following it deserves, so that compatible accessories become available at a more reasonable price.
As for the software, it is standard Android for the most part, so if you are a fan of that it will all be very familiar. Sony haven't felt the need to mess with it too much, and it's all the better for it in my opinion.
All in all a great device. If the (essential) charging stand weren't so expensive, and if the IR blaster was more reliable, it would be 5*