Sony, LG offer glimpse of MWC -

Troubled Sony has announced - to a Japanese audience - what it claims is the world's thinnest tablet computer, at just 6.9mm thick, the Xperia Z. 

At 0.27 inches, the machine beats Apple's iPad Mini by 0.01in, while havaing a larger screen, the BBC reports. So far the device is on schedule to be released in Japan, however, it is expected they will make their way to the rest of the world, too, as electronics manufacturers try their best to differentiate enough to win larger shares of the tablet market.

A good bet is next month's Mobile World Congress, the annual mobile trade show that has received drastically more attention since the smartphone boom gained traction. Samsung is expected to release an eight inch version of its Note tablet.

Sony's machine - with some of the spec available here to Japanese readers or those equipped with Google translate - sports a water proof screen as well as a 1.5 GHz quad-core CPU. From Chrome's translation, we understand the device will be marketed as a strong media tablet for creating and playing back content. 

The tablet was announced as part of a promotional drive through Japanese network provider NTT Docomo. Also included was an LG handset, the LG Optimus Pro G, which sports a 440 pixel per inch screen. 

Sony could do with a win in the consumer space. The Japanese company struggled through 2012 thanks to a number of factors, not least the strong Japanese yen, and while its products generated largely positive reviews, none have been the commercial success needed to lift the company out of its troubles. Sony managed to climb back into the black by asset stripping itself in November, 2012.

Mobile World Congress, late this February, will most likely see a range of product announcements that competitors in the smart device space hope will emerge as popular, flagship phones - if they are lucky, aping the success of Samsung's recent smartphone wins.