updated 09:15 am EDT, Wed September 16, 2009
Sony Walkman A840 and S740
Sony on Wednesday unveiled a new Walkman line that appears tailored to compete with and beat the new iPod nano in terms of sheer features. The A840 is not only the first Sony player to be almost as thin as its Apple counterpart, at 0.28 inches thick, but has an even larger 2.8-inch display that uses OLED. The swap gives it better color reproduction than the iPod's LCD and supplies a long 29 hours of music playback, or nine hours of video.
The player has Sony's usual media support, including AAC and H.264, and should work with drag-and-drop loading on any computer; Windows PCs also get Sony's familiar iTunes conduit app to sync music and videos from iTunes. The company appropriately vows tight integration with the PS3 and will let users play content from the Walkman on the game console.
Sony's capacity and storage also give it a possible edge, as the company is selling 16GB, 32GB and even 64GB versions. The A840 is launching in Japan first and should be available on October 31st at estimated US-equivalent prices of $265, $331 and $442.
Also confirmed today are the previously rumored steps below the player, the S740 and S640. These have much more conventional 2-inch LCDs but otherwise have the same features and muster an even larger 42 hours of music playback time. The S640 is the base player and will come in 8GB and 16GB capacities at prices equivalent to $154 and $188. The S740 adds active noise cancellation and will have 8GB, 16GB and 32GB versions that cost $177, $210 and $276 each. Most models should ship in mid-to-late October in Japan.
Most Walkman players reach the US but usually have slightly lower prices. [via Impress]