In a sea of black touch-screen slates with comparative hardware specifications and (the majority at least) all running Android, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for hardware brands to differentiate on their handset and tablet offerings. Passing between the halls of Mobile World Congress this year it was often only the changing color of the stand staffs’ t-shirts that indicated that you’d passed between manufacturers’ stands.
It was this, slightly anemic condition of the industry that made a visit to the Sony stand all the more exciting.
Go and pick up their new Experia Tablet Z and tell me you don’t want in your life right now. It renews my faith in the ability of companies to innovate on hardware design.
Sony’s new design language centres around what it calls “OmniBalance”; minimal with an omni-directional experience that’s balanced no matter how you hold it.
I think Sony joins an elite club, probably only comprising Apple and Nokia, of companies that can truly claim a distinctive and differentiated design language that stretches across wireless products.
Its magic is not being able to quite express what makes it feel unique; a combination of balance, materials and form come together to give the impression that someone has actually thought this through, not rushed out a tablet to compete against a competitive product.