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Sony Debuts Xperia Tablets, Wi-Fi Cams

NEW YORK – Sony unveiled last Wednesday both at IFA in Berlin and here Xperia-branded tablets and its first Wi-Fi enabled cameras — as well as its 84- inch 4K LCD TV.

Sony Electronics U.S. president Phil Molyneux said at the New York press event that tablets have been placed under the Xperia mobile phone umbrella to help consumers understand that Sony’s smartphones and tablets offer a consistent and immersive entertainment experience.

The first product, called the Xperia Tablet S, is based on the Android 4.0 platform and features a thinner body design, splash resistance, an Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core processor, and HDMI connectivity with optional HDMI adapter cable.

It adds a home-theater universal remote control app with macro features that allow turning on and queuing up a program to view on a multi-component system with the push of a button.

Sony has also added a slick graphic user interface for viewing movie and TV content, called Watch- Now, that makes program recommendations based on user data and allows tuning the TV in the room to a selected program with the swipe of a finger toward the TV screen.

The Tablet S ships to Sony retail partners this week in three versions based on storage capacity — a 16GB version carries a $399 suggested retail, a 32GB version is $499 and a 64GB version is $599.

Meanwhile, Sony’s Wi-Fi-enabled cameras include an updated mirrorless compact system camera for its NEX line and the company’s first foray into the action video camera sub-category, which also include a non-Wi-Fi version.

The NEX-5R mirrorless interchangeable- lens camera features a 16.1-megapixel APS-C Exmor R CMOS image sensor and a new fast hybrid AF system. It also marks the company’s first NEX model to incorporate Wi-Fi capability.

The NEX-5R ships in October in a choice of silver, black or white body colors for a $750 suggested retail with an 18-55mm kit zoom lens or $650 for the body only.

The new Sony Action Cams HDRAS10 and the HDR-AS15 (with Wi-Fi) ship to retail in September at suggested retails of $200 and $270, respectively.

The wearable point-of-view video cameras were designed to go up against Go Pro’s popular action video camera line, targeting young, outdoor-loving thrill-seekers looking to record their adventures under the toughest conditions in FullHD 1080p video or quality still images.

The cameras ship with a rechargeable battery, adhesive mounts, and a ruggedized waterproof case (to 197 feet) featuring a universal tripod mount, built to handle extreme environments.

The HDR-AS15 Wi-Fi version will work with Sony’s PlayMemories Mobile app to allow users to instantly share their content to a smartphone and send images over the Internet via 3G or 4G cell networks.

It can also tether to a smartphone to use the phone’s LCD screen in live view mode to frame a shot.

Other common features include 16-megapixel Exmor R CMOS sensors, Sony’s SteadyShot image stabilization, Carl Zeiss Tessar ultra-wide-angle lenses, multiple video modes including a 4x slow-mo mode in 720p HD resolution, and Interval Still Recording mode for photo capture. Video is recorded in a range of resolution levels including 1080/30p using MP4 format.