Thinnest, lightest, highest water resistance - there are plenty of superlatives you can throw at the Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet - prettiest is another, though that one's more subjective. What is certain is that Sony has crafted one of the best tablets of 2014.
The original Xperia Tablet Z was already among the slimmest and most attractive we've handled, but Sony did even better with the Xperia Z2 Tablet. The slimmer waistline certainly improves the looks even further.
More importantly, the new tablet is 50g lighter than its predecessor. The Wi-Fi only version of the Z2 Tablet weighs just 426g, the LTE-enabled variant does 439g. In comparison, the Wi-Fi only versions of the iPad Air and the Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 weigh 470g. The Xperia Z2 Tablet is a millimeter thinner too than those two.
The size and resolution of the display remain the same - 1,920 x 1,200 on a 10.1" diagonal - but sprinkled with more of Sony's Triluminos and X-Reality tech. The viewing angles are much improved compared to the earlier generation, which is great though we would've loved to see a bump in pixel density too.
The chipset is a bigger leap forward that puts the Xperia Z2 Tablet ahead of the competition - while flagship smartphones are adopting Snapdragon 801 chipsets, most tablets are still on Snapdragon 800. This should give the Z2 Tablet an edge in 3D graphics.
Sony also put a pair of front-facing stereo speakers to further improve the gaming experience, though these will come in handy when watching movies too.
Water resistance is a big part of the Xperia Z identity and even goes up a notch in the Z2 Tablet. The IP58 certification means it can stay under 1.5m of water for half an hour. Specialized tablets aside, the Xperia Z2 Tablet and its predecessor are the only mainstream water-proofed tablets.
The Xperia Z2 Tablet might prove to be better for Sony than even the Z2 smartphone - that one is embroiled in a three-way battle with the Samsung and HTC flagships, while Android tablets have no distinct opposition to the iPad. And the Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet beats the iPad Air in several key points- both hardware and software.
Now jump to the next page to see the tablet getting a proper physical.