Game streaming service sees first expansion into television market, still in beta
Television owners feeling left out of the PlayStation Now beta program no longer need to be, as long as they own one of a select number of Sony televisions. The electronics manufacturer announced that on June 30, the PlayStation 3 game streaming service will come to the company's 4K Ultra HD televisions, as well as a small number of 1080p Bravia units.
4K Media Player adds HEVC decoding to 2013, 2012 Sony 4K TVs
Sony has launched a third iteration of its 4K Media Player, this time aimed at the European market. The FMP-X5 media streamer is said by Sony to be intended for models of its Bravia 4K televisions sold in 2012 and 2013 that do not have a built-in HEVC decoder, allowing those televisions the ability to watch Ultra HD-resolution streaming content.
Range includes 85-inch flagship, budget-priced 4K televisions
Sony has outlined the pricing and availability for its range of Bravia 4K Ultra HD televisions, sets it originally revealed at CES in January. The high-resolution televisions, including one high-priced model measuring 85 inches diagonally priced at $24,999, are detailed at the same time as an updated version of the company's 4K media player.
British streaming service to also show Amazon Studio pilots
Amazon's Lovefilm service in the UK has signed a deal with BBC Worldwide to continue offering BBC content to its customers through Lovefilm Instant. The announcement comes at the same time as the Lovefilm app reaches Sony Bravia televisions, as well as news that it will also stream 11 original TV series test pilots from Amazon Studios.
Quantum dots to increase color range by 50 percent
Details of 'Triluminos,' a feature of Bravia HDTVs using quantum technology demonstrated at CES by Sony, have been made available. Originally appearing in televisions in 2008 before being pulled due to the costs involved, the technology relies on nanoscale particles called 'quantum dots' in order to increase the color range of LCD televisions by around 50 percent.
Sony pushes 4K
Ultra HD televisions have been a resounding theme this year at CES, and Sony was among the electronics giants pushing to promote the higher resolution in its premium models. The company last year introduced the gigantic 84-inch XBR84X900 with an Ultra HD panel, however the Bravia lineup has been expanded to include 65- and 55-inch options that edge slightly closer to the mass market.
Ships 6 models from new line-up
Following on the unveiling of its 2012 line of televisions at CES in January, Sony has added six of the models to its available lineup. At the entry point, the company will begin shipping 40-and 46-inch members of its BX450 series. At the mid-range, it has released 40-, 46-, and 55-inch EX640 models, while at the top end, it is now shipping the 55-inch HX750 to complement its smaller 46-inch sibling already on the market.
Sony shows HX-, EX-, BX-series HDTVs at CES
Sony has introduced ten new Bravia HDTVs at CES, and we've got the specs on them. There are three sets in the entry-level BX-series, three in the midrange EX and four in the flagship HX. The only set Sony brought to CES was the range-topping KDL-55HX850. Sony improved the picture quality and added a number of new features while lowering power consumption by as much as 30 percent with the scene-optimizing feature on and in the range of 15 percent or higher in normal viewing compared to last year's models.
Sony shows many unreleased 2012 Windows prototypes
Sony in the aftermath of its CES 2012 opener began showing a slew of unmentioned concepts and prototypes at its booth. Among the examples was a new, mystery VAIO tablet concept behind a glass case. The new device, presumably intended to run Windows 8, had an all-rounded design with an aluminum back and a separate, illuminated, capacitive touch keyboard.
Sony updates Bravia TVs with YouTube HD, Facebook
Sony has detailed a software update to its Bravia Internet-connected HDTVs that will bring with it a number of new features. They include access to YouTube HD movies, Facebook photos and videos on the full screen, ticker-like Twitter updates while watching TV, and more. TrackID song search results can also be sent directly to Twitter.
Sony recalls 1.6 million faulty Bravia TVs
Sony is recalling 1.6 million Bravia TVs worldwide after it was found that some models were emitting smoke or had internal parts melting due to faulty componentary. So far, the company has learned of and investigated 11 separate instances where users reported the issues. To date, the issue has only been reported in Japan, however, the company has said that the faulty parts may affect Bravia TV sets worldwide.
Sony Vaio L all-in-one first with HDMI 3D input
Sony's product launches before the IFA show are continuing, with an all-in-one Vaio L the latest unveiling. The 24-inch 3D desktop has a multi-touch display and a touch-sensitive bezel. It will get a choice of second-gen Intel Core processors, NVIDIA GeForce GT 540M graphics, 8GB of RAM and a 1TB hard drive.
Helps visualize how TV would look on room wall
Sony UK is offering an online tool that helps perspective TV buyers visualize how a screen would look in their own house. The TV Size Guide is a web-based app that will create images of different size TVs superimposed over a rendering of a wall of their apartment or house. The would-be buyer can then compare different sizes and then get detailed information on the best fit.
Report follows rumors of break with Samsung
Sony is reportedly preparing to revamp its television segment amid ongoing lackluster performance in the market. The electronics maker is even said to be considering fresh partnerships with other companies, in an attempt to reconfigure the production operations, development and sales, Chief Financial Officer Masaru Kato was quoted as saying in a Nikkei report (sub. required).
Drive designed for Bravia TVs, Handycam, etc.
Sony has introduced its first external hard drive, the HD-PG5. Although the drive works as a general USB-attached storage device, it also provides a number of features specific to Sony's range of devices. Users can record HD video directly from their Bravia TV, transfer video files directly from a Handycam camcorder without using a PC, or play videos and photos through a PlayStation 3 console.
Sony releases 2011 Bravia HDTVs
Sony announced on Wednesday that it will begin shipping its 2011 range of Bravia TVs introduced at CES. Of the 37 new models, 32 are Internet-connected and 23 have 3D screens. The connected TVs offer or will soon offer access to Netflix for streaming movies and TV shows, Crackle for Hollywood movies and TV shows for free, the Yahoo Connected TV Store for apps and TV content from CBS and Showtime and more.
Sony Music Unlimited near PSP, Xperia Play, NGP
Sony in a chat late Thursday said that Music Unlimited would come to all of its main mobile devices this year. The PSP would get it within a "matter of weeks," while the Xperia Play and other Android devices should get it sometime this year. Sony also promised Eurogamer the NGP would get the streaming service, though whether it would be ready for the late 2011 initial launch or wait until 2012 wasn't mentioned.
Sony says iTunes safe as Music Unlimited hits US
Sony on Thursday took quick steps to shut down worries that it might leave iTunes even as it brought a competitor to the US. Its Network Entertainment COO Brandon Layden said Sony had "no intention of withdrawing." Apple's music store was too important to leave despite the PlayStation's Australian group chief Michael Ephraim's comments, Layden told SAI.
Sony Ericsson Xperia Play commercial outed
A TV commercial for the upcoming Xperia Play from Sony Ericsson has been found online thanks to Droid NYTT. The video shows the Android mascot get some stitched on thumbs for gaming for the PSP-style controls. The so-called Playstation phone is expected to make its official debut at Mobile World Congress show later this month.
Sony to put Opera onto BRAVIA HDTVs, Blu-rays
Sony and Opera, the web browser traditionally associated with mobile devices, have teamed up on a scheme to put the latter's software onto the former's Bravia HDTVs and Blu-ray players. The network-connected hardware would support some fledling Internet standards as a result, such as HTML5, HbbTV and OIPF. At the same time, it would offer users an option other than the Google TV platform that's being embedded into some Sony hardware.
Japan buys more 3D Blu-ray recorders than 2D
New statistics from Tokyo-based research firm BCN have revealed that the majority -- 56.8 percent -- of Blu-ray recorders sold in Japan in December supported 3D content. The count is a significant bump up from the 6.7 percent in September, despite prices that are, on average, 30 percent higher than 2D recorders, the study found. The average price for a 3D recorder in Japan is about $900.
Sony and Ericsson team up to build Xperia Arc
Whether needed or not, the world has one more smart phone to choose from thanks to the latest collaboration between Sony and Ericsson: the Xperia Arc. This new smartphone is based on the Android platform, but hopes to stand out from the pack thanks to its Sony Bravia engine that the electronics maker claims will make it the brightest display on the market.
Sony outs 22-inch 720p HDTV with integrated PS2
Sony has released a unique new HDTV in Europe, the 22-inch Bravia KDL-22PX300. The set is the first with built-in PlayStation 2 console, letting users watch DVD movies and play PS2 games. The set outputs a 720p image and has an unusually wide-ranging four HDMI inputs.
PlayStation phone LCD and game details emerge
More information surrounding the PlayStation phone may have emerged in a leak this evening that focused on the screen and games. While backing many details that were already known, it should have a "mind-blowing" display that would be comparable to the iPhone 4's screen. Sony Ericsson is considering using the Bravia brand to promote the quality, MobileCrunch said, much as it has for some Japan-only phones.
Sony intros Qriocity streaming service to devices
Sony will soon bring its Qriocity service to the PSP and connected Bravia TVs, Blu-ray players and home theater systems in the UK. In the PSP, this means access to Sony's Music Unlimited library, while the other devices will have access to streaming access. The PSP requires a software update, v6.35 that's coming soon. This will bring with it a new icon under the XMB interface's Music category.
Hulu Plus goes public on Sony home theater, PS3
Sony this morning said it would bring Hulu Plus to virtually all of its devices. Every 2010 Bravia TV with Internet either built-in or added on, as well as similar Blu-ray players and home theater bundles, will get access to the $10 monthly streaming service. The company is also lifting the invite-only limit on PS3s and will let all American PS3 owners sign up for TV viewing.
Microsoft doubts popularity of current 3D tech
At a recent speech, Microsoft's VP of game studios Phil Spencer said he doesn't believe current 3D TVs and glasses will become ubiquitous in consumers' homes. According to a Wednesday GamesIndustry report [reg. required], Spencer blamed this on the need to wear special glasses, and admitted to liking the Nintendo 3DS that does not require a user to wear glasses to see 3D images. He clearly attacked rival Sony's marketing model of trying to push 3D to sell Bravia TV sets without directly naming the company.
We cover Sony's Google TV keynote live
Sony tonight is holding its Google TV introduction in New York City. The electronics giant is expected to launch the Bravia GT1 as the first TV with the OS built-in as well as a Blu-ray player or other set-top box with Google TV built in. Please visit our live coverage page for updates as they appear, starting from 5:30PM Eastern.
Sony jumps gun with Google TV dev submissions
Just ahead of its keynote today, Sony today launched a registration page for Google TV development. The page should give support for writing Android-based apps for the Bravia GT1, a dedicated set-top box, and possibly other TV sets. Most details aren't available so far of what it entails, but the program would likely optimize apps to work with the sizes and feature sets of the lineup.
New rumor drops Sony Google TV prices
Sony's GT1 Google TV line should cost significantly less than expected if a leak is true. The 46-inch NSX-46GT1 would cost just $1,399, not the $1,899 originally expected. Many of the earlier quoted prices would be "several hundred dollars less," the Sony Insider source said.
Sony Google TV gets premature showing
Best Buy during a holiday preview today inadvertently spoiled Sony's Google TV launch through a demo of the set. The Bravia NSX-46GT1 has a 46-inch, edge LED display and uses a USB adapter to get on to Wi-Fi when Ethernet isn't an option. It behaves like a reference Google TV device, HD Guru noted, and includes both the universal TV/web search and Chrome browsing; it has quick access to Amazon (likely VOD) and YouTube.
Sony teases Google TV event for October 12
Sony tonight sent an invitation to the press for an official unveiling of its Google TV-capable Bravia line. The request implies just one model as the "first Internet Television" and shows a glimpse of a new look that combines the monolithic design of existing sets with a new wireframe stand. Sony doesn't give clues as to features but expects to have live demos.
Google gives out 600 Google TV bundles?
The Google TV release is just around the corner, as Google Zeitgeist guests in Arizona on Tuesday reportedly received a Google TV bundle that included a Sony Bravia set and equipment from Dish. The gift also reportedly included installation from Best Buy's Geek Squad, and some 600 bundles were given away. An AllThingsD source added that Havaianas flip flops were part of the package, while the entertainment on hand was provided by Cirque Du Soleil.
Intel says Google TV shipping in September
Intel chief Paul Otellini in an interview today [sub. required] confirmed that the first Google TV devices should start shipping in September. He didn't say whether the Logitech Revue or Sony's Bravia TVs, though Logitech has been the furthest in development. There are "many, many" other companies supporting the platform, the executive added.
Samsung mulling possibility of Google TV
Samsung admitted at a forum today that the company was considering developing Google TV hardware. TV group leader Yoon Boo Keun told the media Samsung was "reviewing" the prospect of using the Android-based shell but was anxious about support in South Korea. Media producers would have to get behind Google's platform in Samsung's home country for it to make sense, Keun told Bloomberg and others in attendance.
Sony shows 3D-capable, 240Hz notebook prototype
Sony is showing off a prototype notebook equipped with a 240Hz, 3D-capable LCD display. Engadget was granted an early look at the device, which uses an integrated IR transmitter to synchronize with the required Bravia active shutter glasses. The prototype uses a current VAIO F-series 16-inch notebook chassis, but the production versions due for release in 2011 are likely to be housed in a different body.
Sony Music Unlimited, Qriocity Europe official
Sony's rumored media subscription service was revealed at a pre-IFA event today and is now known to be much less ambitious than rumored. Known as Music Unlimited, the feature will give streaming audio to Sony's Bravia TVs, Blu-ray players, PCs and the PS3. The PSP and other devices will get access later, Sony said.
Sony may use PS3 to launch iTunes-rivaling service
Late tips this evening suggest Sony could temporarily upstage Apple's special event tomorrow with the long-awaited launch of its own media subscription service. Sony's pre-IFA keynote tomorrow morning is believed to be kicking off a music and video subscription service that would start first on the PS3 and PSP but spread to all Sony devices, including its home theater line, PCs, Sony Ericsson phones and Walkman players. The Financial Times sources claimed would be just an early preview and that the plan would go live only in 2011, once content deals had been lined up.
Sony Netbox brings Netflix, YouTube to TVs
Sony tonight leapt into the streaming media hub field with the Netbox. The hub acts as a portal for the features that would normally be available only through a Bravia TV, such as Netflix and Qriocity movies, DailyMotion and YouTube videos, and locally available media. While it has its own remote, the hardware is uncommonly linked with smartphone apps and will have both Android and iPhone controllers.
Sony NX810 upgrades edge LED TVs with 3D
Following a brief tease in Europe, Sony today updated its 3D-capable Bravia TVs with a new set of slightly lower-cost but still high-end models. The NX810 line replaces the NX800 from January with the addition of 3D support for those who want to upgrade later. They still require separate 3D glasses, but Sony promises two free 3D Blu-ray movies and a PlayStation network code to get a set of 3D-capable games.
Sony rolls out 3D TVs, players in earnest
Sony today pushed 3D in huge fashion by setting ship dates or posting updates for most of its capable devices, including the PS3. The company's 3D-capable Bravia TV updates promised at CES are now up for pre-orders at the company's online store and should ship along with other devices in July. As an incentive to buy in early, every set will have copies of 3D Blu-ray movies Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs and Deep Sea as well as download codes for 3D-aware PS3 games Super Stardust HD, Wipeout HD, a partial version of Pain and a demo of MotorStorm: Pacific Rift.
Sony working on PlayTV 2, 3D games due June 10
Sony is working on a sequel to its PlayTV PVR and tuner add-on for the PS3, which has yet to make it to the North American market. Senior producer at Sony's Cambridge Studio Mark Green confirmed this info, saying Sony is still working on PlayTV and PlayTV 2. At the same time, Sony will release four 3D games or demos on June 10, the company announced.
Sony PS3 update preps 3D support, live MLB games
Sony's PS3 gaming console will soon get a firmware update which will prep the gaming console for 3D stereoscopic video playback, allow Major League Baseballís live streaming and enhance the Trophies system, the company announced yesterday. The 3.30 update will allow 3D games that should come soon. It won't bring full support for 3D movies, though that update is expected later this summer to coincide with the release of Sony's 3D BRAVIA HDTVs.
Sony shows 3D sound bars, 5.1-channel system
Sony today showed three upcoming sound systems for the home that have 3D sound capability. This includes the HT-CT150 and HT-CT350 3.1-channel sound bars and the 5.1-channel HT-SF470 surround sound system. All have a 3D pass-through with an HDMI repeater that includes three inputs and one output along with another HDMI pass-through connection.
Android TV box helped by Intel, Logitech, Sony
Google's rumored Android-based TV box is real and has some of the world's largest electronics companies involved in making it a reality, a major leak has revealed tonight. Now titled Google TV, the project would see Sony produce the first hardware while Intel would supply Atom chips and help engineer the software. Logitech is also said involved by the NYT source and would make a remote with a keyboard.
Sony Dash up for pre-sale, due April 15th
Sony has began taking pre-orders for its Dash Personal Internet Viewer and lists the projected ship date as April 15th. It's being described as a more functional version of the Chumby and can show news, play media and Facebook updates on its 7-inch touchscreen with 800x480 resolution. Perhaps most unique is its ability to download from a library of more than 1,500 free apps developed for the Chumby.
Sony to launch 3D PS3 firmware along with 3D TVs
The promised firmware update for the PS3 that will endow the console with 3D image processing for its games is due for this summer, as confirmed by John Koller, the director of hardware marketing for SCEA. The release will coincide with the 3D BRAVIA TVs introduced at CES and should come at the same time as new 3D Blu-ray players also get their updates. Besides the TV and the console, the PS3 graphics will also need active shutter glasses to decipher the stereoscopic images on the screen.
Sony hints at iPad rival in works
Sony while discussing its latest results today said it would like to compete against the iPad. Company CFO Nobuyuki Oneda said Sony is "very interested" in producing a tablet and is "confident" that it can produce a device that competes with Apple's hardware. He didn't provide significant clues as to how far along in development the Sony device is, if at all, but acknowledged it would trail behind the iPad's late March ship date.
Sony to bring Internet Video Link to PS3, 3D TVs
In a recent interview, COO and President of Sony Electronics USA Stan Glasgow revealed some interesting tidbits of information about the company's future as it pertains to new TV technology and yet more functionality for its PS3 gaming console. Glasgow confirmed the PS3 will get support for the BRAVIA Internet Video Link streaming video service in the near future, though no other details were mentioned.
TVs feature "Monolithic Design Concept"
Although Sony's 3D-enabled TVs drew most of the attention this year at CES, the company also introduced several new 2D BRAVIAs. Many of the models have been updated with LED backlighting and a new form-factor dubbed "Monolithic Design Concept." Wi-Fi connectivity allows several of the TVs to access Internet video, widgets, and other content from DLNA-certified home networks.