Sony Europe GmbH

New Portable HDD Players From Sony Widen the Family of Devices Compatible With Connect Online Music Store

BERLIN, Germany, July 1 (ots/PRNewswire) --


      - For the Love of Music Sony delivers the most comprehensive
product range for enjoying PC and Internet music with the new Network
WALKMAN with HDD and VAIO Pocket Music Player

      As of the summer of 2004, Sony will offer a complete range of
portable digital audio devices that covers every segment of the
personal network audio market. New products from the WALKMAN and VAIO
families that closely follow the launch of Sony Connect service offer
consumers everything they need for enjoying music in the broadband
era.

      Chris Deering, CEO of Sony Europe, comments: "Sony has built upon
its vast experience with portable audio, IT and music distribution to
provide Europe with the first online music service to be seamlessly
integrated with a complete range of portable music devices. With its
unique line-up of products, Sony offers solutions to a multitude of
consumer needs in the broadband age. "

      "We already have sold over two million portable audio players in
Europe alone, all of them compatible with our new online music store
in Germany, UK and France. In August this year, Sony will complement
its existing product line-up (new Hi-MD WALKMAN, ATRAC CD WALKMAN and
Network WALKMAN with flash memory) with two new compact, hard disk
based, personal audio products. Both of these distinctive products
will appeal to those who demand stylish and state-of-the-art
high-capacity networked solutions, while targeting two different
consumer groups using our VAIO and WALKMAN brands"

      Connect to your music


      The new portable HDD products demonstrate Sony's commitment to
provide a responsible, sustainable model for the use of Internet
distributed music. The strategy is based around the integration of a
range of products and technologies that are suitable for different
applications or tastes, and are centred on the new online music
distribution system, CONNECT. The seamless integration of these
latest VAIO and WALKMAN portable devices with the easy-to-use
SonicStage music management software and the high quality Connect
music store gives the consumer a one-stop musical experience.

      While supporting existing major audio compression formats, Sony
has renewed its commitment to sound quality with support across the
range for ATRAC3 and ATRAC3plus, high performance compression schemes
based on sophisticated psychoacoustic principles and the basis of
proven MiniDisc technology. Consumers can now choose from a variety
of products (new Hi-MD WALKMAN, ATRAC CD WALKMAN, Network WALKMAN
with flash memory and now hard disk based products) based on their
technical enthusiasm, need for removable media, their taste in
design, listening environment and so on ... but whatever their choice
they can be confident that their Sony solution will connect
effectively.

      Credit card sized Network WALKMAN with HDD holds 900 CDs and
provides 30 hours of continuous playback

      "With the launch of the world's smallest, lightest and
thinnest(1) 1.8 inch HDD audio player, Sony augments its WALKMAN line
up to offer a full range of portable audio products that all work
seamlessly with the Connect music download service. 25 years of
Walkman heritage have gone into making all these products the best
that money can buy," says Sony Europe CEO Chris Deering.

      The NW-HD1, measuring just 89mm x 62.1mm x 13.8mm(2), features a
1.8 inch HDD with 20GB capacity and can store up to 900 CDs, which is
the equivalent of 13,000 songs(3). Specially developed low power
consumption circuitry means that the unit can provide a marathon 30
hours(4) of continuous playback with just one battery charge. And
because Sony understands that like with any other portable audio
device the NW-HD1 will get its fair share of bumps and knocks, this
Network WALKMAN features G-Sensor(5) to protect your music on the
hard drive - if it is dropped a velocity sensor temporarily removes
the head from the disk. Furthermore, 25 minutes of on-board memory
ensures skip-free playback even in demanding situations.

      The NW-HD1 is supplied with a cradle charger that provides
Hi-speed USB connection (USB 2.0) to a PC and can charge the unit to
80% within one hour(6). For easy access to the vast amount of music
you can store on the device, it features a horizontally positioned
large 7-line display with jog lever. With unique style this Network
WALKMAN is set to become one of the most sought after items of 2004.

      References:


      1. As a 1.8 inch HDD audio player.


      2. Excluding projecting parts


      3. Using ATRAC3plus 48Kbps mode at 60 minutes per CD and 1 song
representing 4 minutes


      4. In ATRAC3plus 48Kbps mode. 27 hours playback with ATRAC3plus
64Kbps

      5. G-Sensor does not guarantee protection for the player from all
types of impact

      6. Full charge in 3 hours.


      VAIO Pocket Music Player to view your music and more ...


      The VAIO Pocket Music Player, VGF-AP1, marks a key point in the
evolution of the VAIO concept and is aimed squarely at the
discerning, techno-savvy consumer. Designed to provide storage for up
to 900 CD's (with the 20GB version(+)) or up to 1,800 CD's (with the
40GB version*) and over 20 hours of non-stop playback, the VAIO
Pocket can also act as a digital photo album or as an external hard
disk drive. It can communicate with PC's and link with digital
cameras, making it easy to build up huge collections of sounds and
pictures.

      (+) using ATRAC3plus 48Kbps mode at 60 minutes per CD


      The VAIO Pocket has a hybrid technology 2.2 inch full colour
display designed to be viewed in daylight without difficulty. In
general use the screen displays the intuitive Grid sense interface
making the VAIO Pocket very simple to operate. Touching the
bump-textured area beside the screen selects and activates the
on-screen buttons directly, and in a way that instantly feels
natural.

      A cradle charger provides connections for a PC (via USB 2.0),
digital camera (via mini-USB 1.1) and an audio output for
loudspeakers. The unit has a sophisticated remote control that makes
track selection simple thanks to a highly readable three-line backlit
display ideal for browsing song titles.

      The HDD Network WALKMAN will be available in selected European
countries during August 2004 and the first VAIO Pocket Music Player
will be available during October 2004.

      NW-E55 and NW-E75(++) Network WALKMAN Digital Music Player around
the neck

      Measuring a little more than an inch and weighing about 40 grams,
the sassy models are small enough to fit on a key chain, yet is home
up to 256 MB of built-in memory that stores up to 170 four-minute
songs at 48 kbps. This tiny, tune-token is also huge on battery life,
achieving up to 70 hours of continuous playback on one AAA battery.
And since there are no moving parts, users can enjoy uninterrupted
playback even during serious activity.

      The distinctive acrylic finish, in silver for the NW-E75 and
blue, red or pearl for the NW-E55, makes them too good looking to
hide away on a belt or in a pocket, and who would want to, because at
40 grams they are light enough to be worn around the neck. Sony has
supplied a convenient neck strap specifically for this purpose.

      It has a backlit LCD display with four modes to show track
numbers, play modes, artist names, song titles and more. The
group/folder function allows for easy navigation between multiple
folders transferred from playlists.

      Both the NW-E55 and NW-E75 Network WALKMAN models will be
available across Europe in early July.

      (++) Previously announced at CeBIT 2004.


      About Hi-MD WALKMAN


      The latest devices offer the ultimate in storage capacity, sound
quality, transfer speed and portability due to the small size, shock
resistance and long battery life. The Hi-MD WALKMAN can record up to
45 albums onto a single, new generation 1GB Hi-MD disc and supports
the storage of uncompressed CD audio, ATRAC compressed audio, image
data and PC files with up to 100x real time transfer speed - all on a
convenient removable disc. The Hi-MD WALKMAN comes in 5 different
models each offering different benefits in terms of size, sound modes
and accessories.

      About ATRAC CD Walkman


      The latest ATRAC CD WALKMAN models combine all the benefits of a
Sony CD WALKMAN with playback of ATRAC and MP3 compressed music. The
SonicStage jukebox software allows users to easily rip their CD's,
buy and download music from online services such as Connect, create
their own playlists and burn up to 30CDs worth of music onto just 1
CD-R. There are no less than 9 models in the new range each offering
its own solution to different lifestyles and requirements. All have
long battery life, feature the superior G-PROTECTION continuous
jog-proof technology, and come with the easy-to-use SonicStage 2.0
software.

      About Connect


      Sony Europe launched its European electronic music download
service in June, starting in the UK, France and Germany. Connect
offers more than 300,000 songs, including albums and singles from
both major and independent record labels and focuses on creating
locally adapted services. Tracks are available in the ATRAC3 format
at a price starting at EUR0.99 per track, or GBP0.79 in the UK.
Through Connect, consumers will be able to purchase music online in
an easy-to-use, integrated and secure way downloading it to a wide
range of Sony portable devices, such as Network WALKMAN, Hi-MD
WALKMAN, Net MD WALKMAN and ATRAC CD WALKMAN. At the time of
Connect's launch there were more than 2 million compatible portable
Sony devices in Europe.

      Visit www.connect-europe.com.


      www.sony-europe.com/presscenter


      In addition, for any queries about Sony in your respective
country, please contact your local Sony PR office.


      You make it a Sony


      Sony products bring digital technology to life, offering a world
of applications in entertainment and networking whether you are a
novice or an enthusiast. You can shoot your own movies on DVD, edit
them with a VAIO and share them with friends and family with a DVD
player/recorder. You can take perfect still shots every time with
easy to use digital cameras such as Cyber-shot, then make quality
prints, enjoy them cable free on your WEGA television or simply store
your albums on your VAIO. With a Sony network audio device, you can
create your own Internet-sourced music compilations and enjoy them at
great quality at home or on the move. These are just some of the ways
in which Sony gives you complete control over your digital
environment, enabling you to enjoy whatever you want, wherever and
whenever.

      About Sony:


      Sony manufactures audio, video, communications and information
technology products for the global consumer and professional markets.
With its music, pictures, game and online businesses, Sony is
uniquely positioned to become a leading personal broadband
entertainment company in the 21st century. In Europe, Sony recorded
consolidated annual sales of EUR 13.88 billion (yen 1,666 billion)
for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2003, based on an average market
exchange rate for the same period of yen 120 to the EUR. Sony Europe,
with its corporate headquarters at the Sony Center am Potsdamer Platz
in Berlin, is responsible for the company's European electronics
business and registered consolidated sales of EUR 8.62 billion for
the fiscal year ended March 31, 2003.

      For more information on Sony Europe, please visit
http://www.sony-europe.com


ots Originaltext: Sony Europe GmbH
Im Internet recherchierbar: http://www.newsaktuell.ch

Contact:
For more information, please contact: Jean-Baptiste Duprieu /
Corporate Communications Europe, Sony Europe GmbH, tel:
+49-30-2575-5169 / fax: +49-30-2575-5174, email:
jean-baptiste.duprieu@eu.sony.com



Weitere Meldungen: Sony Europe GmbH

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