Sony's OLED, Wi-Fi Walkman has been stickered with $299 and $399 prices for the 16GB an 32GB models, respectively. Now it's confirmed, along with details like the presence of Slacker radio service and YouTube. UPDATED
UPDATE: Sony has released more details, adding content partners (Slacker radio!), elaboration on noise cancellation, and gestures like "scene scroll" for better movie watching.
SONY UNVEILS THE X-SERIES WALKMAN®, DELIVERING AN UNRIVALED PORTABLE AUDIO/VIDEO EXPERIENCE
SAN DIEGO, May 13, 2009 –Sony today took the wraps off its top-of-the-line Walkman® Video MP3 player – the X-series Walkman®. A premium portable entertainment device, the X-series (NWZ-X1000 models) is Wi-Fi enabled and features an Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) touch screen, Sony's Digital Clear Audio Technologies, as well as embedded content provided by Slacker® Radio and YouTube™.
"The new X-series leverages Sony's engineering heritage and integrates the latest advances in OLED and other innovative technologies," said Andrew Sivori, director of the audio products business at Sony Electronics. "We focused on enhancing audio and video playback to develop a device that allows consumers a deeper, more interactive way to enjoy content, as well as discover new content, for a truly unique entertainment experience."
Featuring a 3-inch OLED touch screen, the player delivers outstanding video with exceptional color reproduction, extremely high contrast and a rapid response rate.
With a 180-degree viewing angle, the next generation display allows for amazing video playback and photo viewing. Additionally, when watching movies on the device, the image on the screen can be adjusted based on the user's preference, while navigation has been simplified via a feature called scene scroll. Utilizing the scene scroll feature, users select their preferred time increment and simply swipe across the screen to scroll forward and backward through scenes.
Silence is Golden
Sony's X-series Walkman® is the industry's first* video MP3 player to offer integrated digital noise canceling technology. The new model uses a unique, built-in digital noise canceling (DNC) software engine to block out ambient noise, while providing a high-quality audio experience.
The accompanying 13.5mm EX headphones house a small microphone to measure intrusive noise so the DNC filter can create an optimal inverted sound wave that reduces up to 98.0 percent of the noise. Sony's DNC software engine makes it possible for the digital noise canceling technology to work in all environments, but custom settings can be selected to enhance the experience. Users can select airplane, bus/train or office modes which use different filters in the digital signal processor specifically tuned for these surroundings.
As an added benefit, users can turn on the noise canceling feature for peace and quiet even without listening to music. On airplanes, travelers can also connect the X-series player directly to a plane's audio / video system with the included accessory cable, and enjoy regular in-flight entertainment with the bonus of digital noise cancellation.
The X-series Walkman® broadens options for enjoying content from multiple sources, including many download stores, the FM tuner, personal collections and embedded services like Slacker® Radio. Using Slacker, music lovers select up to three stations and hundreds of songs will get pushed to the device at no charge. When the stations are refreshed in a Wi-Fi area, the content is buffered and cached on the Walkman player so those tunes can be enjoyed anywhere and everywhere. Slacker also features rich metadata allowing users to access artist info while listening to a song and customize channels with "favorite" and "ban" buttons for the service to suggest content.
Support for popular audio and video codecs is enhanced because the X-series Walkman® devices play protected Windows Media Video (WMV) files, and supports other video codecs such as AVC Baseline (H.264) and MPEG-4, allowing you to enjoy movies and video clips from your other media collections as well as paid music services. It also comes with Content Transfer software which simplifies "drag and drop" transfer of non-DRM music, videos, podcasts and playlists from online music services such as iTunes™ to Walkman® players.
The battery life is up to 33 hours of music playback and up to 9 hours of video playback.
Marking Sony's first Walkman® product with Wi-Fi integration, the X-series Walkman Video MP3 player is a smart device for consumers who want to stay connected at all times. Utilizing built-in Wi-Fi technology, the X-series Walkman Video MP3 players let you access an Internet web browser, subscribe to and refresh podcasts, and search for and playback content on YouTube™, all without using your PC. In addition, a "Related Links" function found when playing your favorite songs allows for quick searches of complementary content via YouTube™ using metadata associated with the song.
The device utilizes a hybrid interface with both touch panel operation and a hard key system to improve upon the navigation experience. Select buttons like volume, play/pause, rewind/fast forward, lock and noise canceling enhance usability when the device is in a backpack, purse or pocket for quick operation without looking at the display.
Pricing and Availability
The X-series Walkman® video MP3 player is available now for pre-sales on sonystyle.com. The device will come in black in two different storage capacities, the NWZ-X1051 with 16GB of internal storage and the NWZ- X1061 with 32GB, and cost $299 and $399 respectively. Both models can be found in Sony Style stores and select retailers nationwide mid-June.
*Based on Sony's survey (as of Apr. 2009)
WALKMAN is a registered trademark of Sony Corporation.
The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.
YouTube is a trademark of Google, Inc.
Slacker is a registered trademark of Slacker, Inc.
iTunes is a trademark of Apple Inc. registered in the U.S. and other countries.