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Sony reveals hybrid ultrabook and slate deviceBy Ryan Noik 30 August 2012 | Categories: news
Sony has once again revealed its own, rather unique approach to mobile devices, as it unveiled its Vaio Duo 11 at the IFA 2012 trade show currently underway in Berlin, Germany.
The hybrid slate and ultrabook, running on Windows 8, sports a sliding LCD display which switches the device from slate to keyboard modes.
The company elaborated that the Vaio Duo 11 puts touch and handwriting at the heart of users’ Windows 8 computing experience, as its digitiser stylus allows for high-precision writing. Additionally, users can set the Vaio Duo 11 into slate mode to browse the internet, access social networking services or Windows 8 Apps.
Alternatively, users can slide the display into keyboard mode and turn the device more conventional ultrabook to work on documents. From what we can gather, this would be somewhat reminiscent of the approach taken by Asus’ EEE Pad Slider tablet.
Sony's newly announced Vaio Duo 11 is a slate and ultrabook hybrid.
However, the Vaio Duo 11 boasts some impressive specifications which power its performance. The Windows 8 device packs an Intel Core i7-3517U or Intel Core i5-3317U processor, up to 8 GB DDR3 memory and Intel Graphics 4000 at its heart, along with a 128 GB or 256 GB solid state drive (SSD).
No less importantly, the 11.6" screen boasts a 1920 x 1080 resolution, while Sony added that its OptiContrast Panel reproduces vivid and accurate colours, which is essential for any graphic intensive work, as well as offering users the flexibility of wide viewing angles. The device also offers two USB 3.0 ports and an SD card reader.
On the write track
Interestingly enough, Sony appears to be adopting a philosophy similarly espoused by Samsung’s Galaxy Note 10.1, as the device appears to be similarly aimed at those seeking a more natural digital writing experience.
To this end, the company explained that the screen intelligently ignores palm presses when writing, while apps such as “Note Anytime for VAIO” turn the Duo 11 into a virtual notebook for note taking.
Additionally, Active Clip allows users to cut out or select parts of an image and save them to a fully shareable scrapbook. Interestingly enough, this is similar functionality that we first saw espoused in Microsoft’s missing-in-action Courier device.
The device is notable for several reasons - amongst them, the fact that it boasts
Windows 8 onboard and is aiming to become writers' new best friend.
Reach out and touch something
Other features on offer worth mentioning include One-Touch function, with near field communication (NFC) technology. This enables the music app on the Vaio Duo 11 to stream music to NFC-enabled devices by simply touching another NFC enabled device to it, at which point the devices will instantly establish a wireless connection, without the need for any Bluetooth or Wi-Fi set up.
Additionally, users will be able to seamlessly pick up where they left off on their MDR-1RBT headphones or SRS-BTV5 or SRS-BTM8 speakers. Moreover, Xperia T, Xperia TX and Xperia V Sony smartphone users will be able to enjoy captured images and music stored on their smartphones, using this One-Touch feature.
Finally, the Socialife app for the device will offer users the ability to organise their social networking services and news feeds through one user interface, and mark articles for reading at a later stage.
To the point
The device, which measures 17.75 mm thin and weighs in at approximately 1.3 kg, is expected to be available locally from November.
Details about neither its price, nor its estimated battery life, have as yet been released. Even as we are inclined to reserve our judgment, and keep our enthusiasm in check, at least until details about these two critical aspects are revealed, the device is certainly looking very interesting indeed.
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