Sony Focuses on Future of Entertainment at CES 2006
John Koller of Sony Computer Ent. of America highlighted the PlayStation Portable system which he said has "given us a glimpse into the future regarding how a platform once limited to gaming can have broad appeal."
He referred to recent announcement including the synching of PSP and Sony's Location Free service to access live TV from almost anywhere in the world via local hotspots, along with accessing video content. He also touted the new PSP Media Manager software that allows the transfer and encoding of everything from personal content to video, music and images from a local PC via a USB connection.
A bounty of new products and technologies emphasizing Sony's commitment to e-Entertainment were highlighted by Steve Haber, Sony Electronics' svp of its personal mobile and imaging division.
Connectivity was underscored as a key focus, specifically with the introduction of Sony's VAIO SZ series notebook computer, which allows users wi-fi access from virtually anywhere using WWAN technology that can sync with Cingular's national Edge Network Service.
Moreover, Sony announced for the first time in the U.S., the Sony Reader, an e-book reader which weighs less than nine ounces and is as thin as a magazine. Thousands of popular book titles are expected to be available on this platform through Sony's CONNECT Reader service later this year.
A variety of camcorder formats were also announced including DVD and MiniDV Handycam camcorders and Sony's first Hard Disk Drive model. Leading the pack is the DCR-DVD505 DVD Handycam, which features built-in Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound and supports an optional microphone that dramatically enhances the center channel sound. Thanks to Bluetooth technology, users can record wirelessly up to 100 feet away. The new hard disk drive camcorder DCR- SR100 also includes this advanced audio capability as well as a 30GB hard disk drive and advanced crash protection technologies to prevent data loss.
"Both models exemplify our new focus on audio performance in 2006. We are offering new enhancements to both audio and video functionality that are certainly going to change the way we capture, edit and ultimately enjoy video," Haber said.
In the digital still camera category Sony announced the next generation of the popular Cyber-shot M1, the DSC-M2 which records full-screen movies and 5.1-megapixel still images as the ideal hybrid device. Haber also announced the new six-megapixel DSC-S600 model that offers an advanced feature set at an affordable price.
All of these devices will have Micro Vault storage capability, leading to Sony's introduction of five new models including Micro Vault Tiny, Micro Vault Pro 8GB, Micro Vault Classic, Micro Vault Turbo and Micro Vault with Fingerprint Access.
To further underscore Sony's unified presence at the show, a backstage theater will be set up in Sony's booth featuring concerts by Sony BMG recording artists including Dave Matthews, Jace Everett, Cheyenne Kimball and the Fray. There will also be presentations touching on Sony's four pillars including a presentation about high definition by noted film director Barry Sonnenfeld; an HD broadcast of the NFL playoffs; and a technology demo of the Sony Reader.
Finally, the company's global chairman/ceo Howard Stringer will deliver the opening day keynote address to CES attendees on Jan. 6, 2006, morning.