The Sony Vaio Tap 11 11.6-inch Windows 8 Tablet Review

It is official; Windows 8 tablets are here to stay. With tablet processors getting more and more powerful and cheaper by the day, it is only a matter of time before tablets running full versions of Windows 8 become a staple in the mainstream tablet market. Here is a snap review of the Sony Vaio Tap 11 tablet.

Design
Sony Vaio Tap 11 3The Sony Vaio Tap 11 is incredibly thin and light for an 11.6-inch tablet. It measures in at 12.00 x 0.39 x 7.40 inches in dimensions and weighs just 1.7 pounds. The back casing has a magnesium alloy finish and generally the tablet sports Sony’s trademark square-ish, geometric looks. On the back you will find a built-in kickstand that can be tilted at any angles below approximately 90 degrees (unlike the kickstand on the Windows Surface Tablet that can only be tilted at two angels).
Sony Vaio Tap 11 4The tablet feels very well built and overall has an elegant and premium feel to it. Other design features worth mentioning is that the tablet ships with a stylus pen and a keyboard. Unlike the S-pen stylus on the Samsung Galaxy Note tablet, the stylus of this Sony device is not stored on the tablet itself.

The Bluetooth keyboard that ships with the Sony Vaio Tap 11 would have to be one of the highlights of this tablet. Unlike the keyboards found on the Microsoft Surface and several other Windows 8 tablets in the market, this keyboard is not attached to the tablet in anyway. It is an independent piece of accessory that can be used without it being attached to the tablet. With this being said, you would also be surprised to learn that it can also be used as a protective lid for the tablet. It attaches itself to the screen through magnets and the underside of the keyboard has a aluminum finish that adds to the premium looks of the tablet.

We feel that this design is either a hit and miss for users. There are some that might not like this keyboard design as it means that you would have two pieces of devices to keep an eye on when you are on the go. On the flip size, the fact that it is completely detached means that you place the keyboard away from the screen at a distance that is most comfortable for you.

Specs and Features
Sony Vaio Tap 11 2 Sony Vaio Tap 11 1The Sony Vaio Tap 11 runs on the full version of Windows 8 (64 bit), which is very impressive considering that it is only priced at less than $800 each (with the keyboard and stylus). This tablet comes with a dual-core 1.2Ghz Intel Pentium 3560Y processor, 4GB of DDR3 RAM and a 128GB solid state hard drive for storage. The processor might not be the most powerful but this set of specs is more than enough for performing a variety of moderate computing tasks whether it is for work or play.  The 11.6-inc display has a 1920 x 1080 resolution that translates to about 190 ppi in pixel density, which is about average by today’s tablet standards.

Other than the modest processor, another seeming compromise that has been made to achieve the competitive price point can be seen in the tablet’s battery life. The 3800mAh battery that comes with the tablet is rated to last up to 6 hours on one charge, which is a little less than what we are used to on Android and Apple tablets. You should also know that the only way to charge the Bluetooth keyboard is to attach it to the tablet on ‘lid mode’ where the keyboard will charge itself from the tablet’s battery, further reducing the already modest battery lifespan of the tablet. Some other features of the laptop include an 8MP camera on the back, a USB 3.0 port and NFC connectivity.

Summary

Overall, the Sony Vaio Tap 11 is an excellent mid-range Windows 8 tablet. As noted above, it does come several flaws but some may think of them as negligible considering that it comes with a full version of the Windows 8, is priced below $800 and is easily one of the best-looking tablets in the market today. If you are looking around for a sleek and good-looking Windows 8 tablet for moderate work and play, this might just be the right choice for you.

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