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Sony Blu-ray Disc player coming 'this summer'

Philips to ship H2, too

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CES Sony will ship Blu-ray Disc players to the US retail market in "early summer", the consumer electronics giant said yesterday at the Consumer Electronics Show, held in Las Vegas.

Dutch giant Philips also got in on the act, pledging to ship a player of its own later this year.

Sony said it will ultimately offer Vaio systems equipped with BD drives, along with external and internal drives for existing PCs. All will come in addition to the BD-supporting PS3.

The company didn't say much about its BDP-S1 player beyond touting its support for 1080p (the highest HD TV resolution) and its summer shipping timeframe.

The external BD drive has an even less well-defined launch window. It will debut some time in 2006, supporting both single-layer, 25GB and double-layer, 50GB media, in both BD-R and BD-RE forms, with recording at a 2x rate. It will also write to DVD±R/RW and CD-R/RW media, Sony said.

Separately, Philips said it will ship a BD player in H2, but the electronics giant has yet to reveal how much it plans to charge for the product. ®

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