Sony launches VAIO Flip series of hybrid Windows 8 laptops in India

Sony India has launched its new family of VAIO notebooks, the Flip series, with the introduction of the F13N, F14N and F15N convertible laptops with a display size of 13.3", 14" and 15.5" respectively.

Sony VAIO Flip F15N, F14N and F13N

(L to R) Sony VAIO Flip F15N (w/ Sony MDR-XB910A headphones), F14N and F13N

There have been several devices in the market that go from laptop/creation mode to tablet/consumption mode. But what sets the VAIO Flip series apart from the competition is the manner in which this is achieved: via a unique hinge mechanism on the back of the display over which the display rotates 180°. You can also use a third mode, called Viewer mode, to watch movies and videos, or to show a PowerPoint presentation. The brushed aluminum finish and diamond-cut VAIO logo provide for a premium look and feel.

Sony VAIO Flip F13N in Viewer mode

Sony VAIO Flip F13N in Viewer mode

The notebooks are powered by Windows 8 (64-bit, Single Language) and Intel's latest 4th-generation Core i5-4200U 1.60 GHz CPU with integrated Intel HD Graphics 4400. The devices come with 4 GB of DDR3 RAM and sport a Full HD 1080p IPS LED display with support for pen and 10-point multi-touch, plus Sony's TRILUMINOS, X-Reality and OptiContrast display technologies.

The F15N also comes in a more powerful variant that features a Core i7-4500U 1.80 GHz processor, 8 GB of RAM and an NVIDIA GeForce GT 735M GPU with 2 GB of GDDR3 graphics memory. The lower variant of the F15N also has the same GPU, but a single gigabyte of graphics memory.

Sony expects the F13N, with the smallest form factor in the Flip series, to be used more as a tablet than as a laptop, and so has included a rear-facing 8 MP camera (w/ Exmor RS sensor) for taking photos and videos. Also, Sony has given the F13N a 128 GB SSD, whereas the F14N and F15N get a hybrid 1 TB 5400 rpm HDD with 16 GB of SSD-like flash memory cache.

Sony VAIO Flip F13N in Tablet mode

Sony VAIO Flip F13N in Tablet mode

The devices feature dual microphones and Intel HD Audio stereo speakers that take advantage of several of Sony's proprietary audio technologies. You get a 720p webcam (w/ Exmor R sensor) for Skype calling, and for input, you have a backlit keyboard and a large touchpad with multi-finger gesture support. For Internet connectivity, the notebooks are equipped with Wi-Fi (up to 802.11n, 300 Mbps), Bluetooth 4.0, as well as NFC. All models, except for the F13N, also have an Ethernet port. Sensors include an accelerometer, gyroscope and digital compass.

The F13N and F14N have two USB 3.0 ports, while the F15N has three. One of these ports has a neat charging function that allows you to charge any USB-chargeable device, such as a smartphone or tablet, from the VAIO's battery. This works even when the VAIO has been powered off. Other connectivity options include an HDMI Out port, a 3.5 mm stereo combo jack and an SD card slot.

Left-hand side ports on the Sony VAIO Flip F13N

F13N LHS ports: (L to R) Power input, 3.5 mm headset jack

Right-hand side ports on the Sony VAIO Flip F13N

F13N RHS ports: (L to R) USB 3.0, USB 3.0 w/ charging function, SD card, HDMI Out

The devices come pre-installed with Skype and a 1-month trial of Office 365. Also included is a 3-month subscription to Sony Music's JIVE Windows Store app, which lets you download unlimited songs from a catalog of over 1.5 million.

The F13N weighs an impressive 1.3 kg and has a claimed battery life of 7.5 hours. It will be priced at Rs. 99,990. The F14N is said to have a battery life of 6 hours and weighs just below 2 kg. At Rs. 94,990, this will be the cheapest VAIO Flip notebook. Sony says the F15N will last 5 hours on a full charge. It weighs in at 2.3 kg and will cost you Rs. 1,04,990. The Core i7 variant of the F15N will set you back a cool Rs. 1,19,990.

The VAIO Flips come with a 1-year warranty and accidental damage cover. Sony is also offering 2 years' extended warranty for a low price of Rs. 999 until 31st March, 2014. All models will be available only in silver color, except for the F13N, which will also come in black.

The Sony VAIO Flip series notebooks will be available at select Sony Centers, VAIO flagship stores and major electronic stores across India starting 29th January, 2014. And for a limited time only, with the purchase of any VAIO Flip, Sony is giving away a pair of MDR-XB910A headphones worth Rs. 12,990 for free.

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