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Enhancing the World of 4K in the Home by Expanding 4K Product Lineup and Enriching 4K Content Environment

Tokyo, Jan 7, 2014 - (JCN Newswire) - Sony is continuing to enrich the 4K viewing experience in the home, by accelerating the expansion of its 4K compatible product lineup, and by increasing the range of viewing environments in which 4K content can be enjoyed.

Sony is showcasing the latest developments in these 4K growth initiatives, outlined below, at the 2014 International CES, running from January 7-10 in Las Vegas.

Consumer 4K Products

New televisions, home theater projector and camcorder models have been added to Sony's growing 4K product lineup in order to enrich the world of 4K in the home. Sony is also increasing the ways in which users can enjoy 4K content, through measures such as increasing compatibility with new codecs as well as allowing users to easily output 4K images from their digital cameras.

Expansion of 4K BRAVIA TV lineup

- Introduction of three series comprising nine models ranging from 85 to 49 inches (2013 lineup: three series made up of five models, ranging from 84 to 55 inches). The latest models incorporate technologies such as Sony's 4K X-Reality PRO picture engine, which can upscale various content to beautiful 4K, wide color gamut TRILUMINOS Display, as well as Sony's new X-tended Dynamic Range PRO technology which provides deeper blacks, more detailed gradation and higher peaks. The combination of these technologies provides an overall image quality that goes beyond standard 4K resolution.

- 2014 4K BRAVIA TVs incorporate a decoder compatible with the latest H.265/HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding) video compression format, enabling them to display 4K/60p content from internet streams and other sources, without the need for additional devices.

- 2014 4K BRAVIA TVs are also able to receive 4K/60p signals via HDMI 2.0, enabling them to easily display fast moving 4K/60p content such as sports. These TVs are also compatible with MHL 3.0 which supports 4K output from mobile devices.
Next generation 4K media player prototype

- New media player compatible with Sony's premium 4K distribution service "Video Unlimited 4K." Capable of playing back content at a maximum bit rate of 100 Mbps, it allows customers to enjoy high picture and sound with the stability that content downloads offer.

- In addition to H.264/MPEG-4 AVC (Advanced Video Coding), this new 4K media player incorporates a decoder compatible with the advanced HEVC compression format. This decoder is designed to provide customers with the ability to enjoy 4K/60p content and anticipated new 4K streaming services.

- Also includes a XAVC S decoder. This decoder will allow customers to save 4K video taken using "FDR-AX100" and "FDR-AX1" 4K Handycams on the 4K media player's internal HDD and replay these videos on a 4K TV.

Expansion of consumer 4K home theater projector lineup (previously announced)

- Two new models "VPL-VW500ES" and "VPL-VW1100ES" were added to Sony's 4K home theater projector lineup in fall 2013. Both of these models are able to receive 4K/60p input via HDMI 2.0.

- "VPL-VW500ES" delivers a significant size reduction (33% decrease in volume and a 30% decrease in weight compared to "VPL-VW1000ES") due to the reduced size and weight of the lens, redesigned optical component layout, and other measures. By making 4K projectors easier to place in the home, Sony aims to make them accessible to an even wider range of customers.

Addition of a compact "FDR-AX100" model to Sony's consumer 4K Handycam lineup

- Approximately one quarter the size of the current "FDR-AX1" model, the "FDR-AX100" features a 14.2 effective megapixel back-illuminated 1.0-type Exmor R CMOS sensor, and captures images with the realism, detail and depth that only 4K can deliver, all in a compact, handheld body.

- Records in the XAVC S format, enabling approximately 130 minutes of 4K video recording (when using a 64GB SDXC memory card Class 10)

- In addition to recording 4K footage, the FDR-AX100 is capable of down-converting 4K images to very high quality 2K (Full HD), using the enormous amounts of data in every 4K frame for spectacular results. It also allows the user to freely select and cut out part of a 4K image to be "trimmed" and then enjoyed on a Full HD 2K TV.

Displaying photos from digital still cameras (HDMI Cable/Wi-Fi)

- Sony cameras including the "alpha5000" announced at CES 2014 and the "RX10," "alpha7," and "alpha7R" launched in the fall of 2013 will be able to convert high resolution photo data into 4K (3840x2160) on the camera and display it on a 4K TV via HDMI cable.

- The photo data can also be transferred wirelessly to Wi-Fi compatible TV models.

The World of 4K Content

In order to truly enhance the 4K viewing experience in the home, expanding the variety of available 4K content, and the ways in which this content can be enjoyed, is also vital. As part of efforts to achieve this aim, Sony is engaged in various initiatives, some together with partners, such as the introduction of 4K video and photo image services, and also the support and adoption of new codecs. Furthermore, Sony will be providing technical support to enable FIFA to produce the 2014 FIFA World Cup final in 4K.

Expansion of Sony's 4K distribution service "Video Unlimited 4K"

- Since its launch in September 2013, Sony has continued to add new and library titles to its 4K content distribution service "Video Unlimited 4K", and as of January 1st 2014, users can now purchase more than 140 titles. Sony plans to continue increasing the number of titles available.

- The service plays back content at a maximum bit rate of 100 Mbps and allows customers to enjoy premium 4K content such as Hollywood movies in high picture and sound quality with the stability that content downloads offer.
Collaboration with "Netflix"

- During Sony's press conference at CES 2014, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Netflix (HQ: U.S., California), Reed Hastings, described Netflix collaboration with Sony and expressed the company's intention to be among the first to deliver 4K UltraHD entertainment to consumers.

- Netflix plans to start providing 4K UltraHD content in the first half of 2014 in all territories where Netflix is available.

- 2014 4K BRAVIA TVs incorporate a decoder compatible with the latest "HEVC" video compression format, enabling them to display 4K/60p content from internet streams and other sources, without the need for additional devices. Additionally, Sony has optimized its BRAVIA TVs to provide a great Netflix experience with faster playback.

Collaboration with "YouTube"

- Sony is working with YouTube on future delivery of YouTube content in 4K resolution via VP9 format.

Expansion of "Blu-ray Disc Mastered in 4K" titles

- Sony has been providing content filmed or remastered in 4K resolution and stored on Full HD Blu-ray discs since 2013. Sony has continued to grow the number of titles and as of January 1, 2014, there are a total of 20 titles available. Sony intends to continue to enrich its catalog of movies remastered in 4K going forward.

Development and growth of Sony's "Playmemories Online" service

- Sony's "PlayMemories Online" cloud-based service for photos and videos which can be used to display 4K photo images on 4K BRAVIA TVs, continues to evolve. It allows users to view photo collections built up over the years and albums that have been shared by friends and family in a 4K slideshow format with background music right from the home screen, just like watching a TV program.

- The availability of the service, which started from 6 countries at launch in April 2012, will be expanded to 27 countries and regions starting in January, 2014.

Collaboration with the online photo community "500px"

- 2014 4K BRAVIA models will have access to the premier photo community "500px," enabling BRAVIA customers to access and enjoy high-quality 4K photos from around the world easily, through their TV.

Supporting 4K content production at the 2014 FIFA World Cup

- For industry and broadcast professionals, Sony also provides key products, systems and workflows from shooting to viewing with its comprehensive 4K live production solutions.
- Sony will be providing technical support to enable FIFA to produce the 2014 FIFA World Cup final in 4K.

Sony will continue its Group-wide collaboration and initiatives together with partners to expand the growing 4K ecosystem, and continue to advance and enrich the 4K viewing experience.

*All trade names are either registered trademarks or trademarks of their respective holders.

About Sony

Sony Corporation is a leading manufacturer of audio, video, game, communications, key device and information technology products for the consumer and professional markets. With its music, pictures, computer entertainment and on-line businesses, Sony is uniquely positioned to be the leading electronics and entertainment company in the world. Sony recorded consolidated annual sales of approximately $79 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2012. Sony Global Web Site: http://www.sony.net/



Source: Sony

Contact:
Sony Corporation
Corporate Communications
T: +81-3-6748-2200
E: sony.pressroom@sony.co.jp



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