Sony S1 tablet once again rumored for a September 2011 release

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Officially, Sony is planning a global release of its S1 and S2 tablets in the fall of this year. That timeframe has been slightly narrowed down for the S1: an August 2011 preorder and an end of September release date, according to a private note from Sony's marketing group cited by Engadget. The device will reportedly be available through Sony Direct, UK department store John Lewis, and a third still-unconfirmed retailer at launch. Availability will apparently open up after the Christmas holiday.

Sony revealed its tablet plans two months ago: two upcoming Android devices codenamed S1 and S2. The media-oriented S1 is a slate with a 9.4-inch touchscreen that is thick on one end and tapers towards the other in order to make it easier to hold for long periods of time. The S2 is meanwhile a folding clamshell device with dual 5.5-inch displays designed for mobile communications as well as entertainment.

The two devices will be marketed under the "Sony Tablet" brand and will play nicely with Sony's premium services, including the PlayStation Network for gaming and the Qriocity media suite. In terms of hardware, both are powered by a Tegra 2 processor, offer wireless connectivity through Wi-Fi, 3G or 4G, and include an IR port for AV controls with Sony's line of Bravia televisions as well as other devices supporting the Digital Living Network Alliance standards.

Four months ago, the rumors started about the S1, a PlayStation Certified device just like Sony Ericsson's Xperia Play smartphone. The target price for the WiFi-only version of the S1 was pegged at $600, and the rumor also claimed a September 2011 ship date.

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