Feeds

Sony to ship portable video, MP3 player next month

Yes, really MP3

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Reg Kit Watch Having admitted this week that Apple beat it to offering the "Walkman of the 21st Century", Sony is fiercely fighting back to recapture the title.

Earlier this month we reported on its first Vaio-branded colour portable music player, the VGF-AP1. Today, Sony unveiled a second machine, this time pitched even more as an adjunct to a home PC, but this time with still photography and video playback functionality.

And in a rare move for Sony, the player supports MP3 rather than the company's own ATRAC audio format.

Sony HMP-A1 video player

The second model, the HMP-A1, contains a 20GB hard drive, the contents of which are listed on a front-mounted 3.5in, 320 x 240 colour LCD - larger than the VGF-AP1's 2.2in display. The new unit is larger, too, and heavier: it's 13 x 7.6 x 2.2cm to the first model's 11.5 x 6.3 x 1.7cm. The two machines weight 250g and 195g, respectively.

The HMP-A1 plays back MPEG 2 and MPEG 4 files. Its software allows it to handle MPEG 1, AVI, WMV and DVR-MS, but these are converted to one of the MPEG video formats when they're downloaded from a host PC to the player.

Likewise, BMP, GIF, PNG and TIFF files are converted to the JPEG files upon transfer.

Not only does the HMP-A1 support MP3 natively, but Sony will ship it with MusicMatch's Jukebox software.

The unit will ship with a Lithium Ion rechargeable battery capable of providing up to four hours' MPEG 2, six hours' MPEG 4 or eight hours' MP3 playback. Sony provides an AC adaptor, but the HMP-A1 can also charge off the host PC's USB 2.0 bus.

The unit has an earphone socket, but it also provides all the ports punters will need to connect it to a hi-fi and TV.

Sony GigaPocket PCVA-HVP20 video playerPrimarily, Sony expects it to be used on the move. Indeed, it's pitching the product as a way to carry TV shows you recorded on your PC with you when you're out and about. While you might think the Vaio-branded model was intended simply as an adjunct to a home PC, Sony appears to be targeting the HMP-A1 at this kind of role, and the Vaio VGF-AP1 at a broader range of consumers.

The new model also appears to be a follow-up to the GigaPocket PCVA-HVP20 portable video player (right) it announced last November

The HMP-A1 will go on sale in Japan on 26 June for around ¥63,000 ($563/£310). ®

Related stories

Sony unveils colour 'iPod killer'
Sony unveils video iPod
Sony shows wireless PlayStation Portable

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
TEEN RAMPAGE: Kids in iPhone 6 'Will it bend' YouTube 'prank'
iPhones bent in Norwich? As if the place wasn't weird enough
Consumers agree to give up first-born child for free Wi-Fi – survey
This Herod network's ace – but crap reception in bullrushes
Crouching tiger, FAST ASLEEP dragon: Smugglers can't shift iPhone 6s
China's grey market reports 'sluggish' sales of Apple mobe
Sea-Me-We 5 construction starts
New sub cable to go live 2016
EE coughs to BROKEN data usage metrics BLUNDER that short-changes customers
Carrier apologises for 'inflated' measurements cockup
Comcast: Help, help, FCC. Netflix and pals are EXTORTIONISTS
The others guys are being mean so therefore ... monopoly all good, yeah?
Surprise: if you work from home you need the Internet
Buffer-rage sends Aussies out to experience road rage
EE buys 58 Phones 4u stores for £2.5m after picking over carcass
Operator says it will safeguard 359 jobs, plans lick of paint
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.