LAS VEGAS--If the company's CES announcements are anything to go by, Sony doesn't seem to have gotten the message that camcorders are dying. While Canon has cut back its consumer and midrange line to about four products, Sony has introduced 10 models at the show ranging from its $250 entry-level model to a $1,500 everything-but-the-kitchen-sink model. Sony's also expanded its projector-camcorder lineup to six models from five last year, and the 3D model has gotten cheaper, but with only one (and a half) feature exception I don't see anything here that merits waiting for a … Read more
LAS VEGAS--Sony is holding most of its home theater announcements for its line show in the spring, but the company did announce its new lineup of Blu-ray players at CES 2013.
Sony's 2013 line of Blu-ray players comprises three new models, the BDP-S1100, BDP-S3100, and BDP-S5100. All three models have a fully encased optical drive, which Sony claims reduces internal dust. The two higher-end models include built-in Wi-Fi and all three can access Sony's full suite of streaming-media services, which includes Netflix, Pandora, Hulu Plus, Amazon Instant, Crackle, and YouTube. That's a step up from most manufacturers, … Read more
Sony hopes its Xperia Z smartphone goes under water. Literally.
The Xperia Z has all of the standard bells and whistles of a high-end smartphone: 5-inch high-definition display with 443 pixels per inch, a 13-megapixel camera, a high-end quad-core Snapdragon processor from Qualcomm, ability to pair with devices via near-field communication. Also, it's waterproof.
More to the point, Sony aims to brand its new phone -- and its smaller brother, the Xperia ZL -- as its first true attempt at marshaling the company's considerable resources in ways it's never managed to pull off before. To that end, … Read more
LAS VEGAS--Sony isn't showing off a ton of new portable audio products at the show, but one new product it's officially launching here is a new Walkman Sports MP3 player (NWZ-270), a $99.99 waterproof, all-in-one digital music player.
This model is the successor to the W-Series NWZ-W262 Walkman, and it's been upgraded with a lighter design, more intuitive controls, as well as total waterproofing -- yes, you can actually take this one underwater and swim with it.
The NWZ-270 includes 4GB of integrated memory and offers drag-drop DRM-free music file transfers from iTunes for Mac or … Read more
LAS VEGAS--Go big, add touch. Sony's subdued CES formula in a nutshell.
Sony's latest Vaio T Series 15 is a new, larger ultrabook with 1080p, sporting a 10-finger multitouch display. It joins the fray of a seemingly endless run of touch-enabled laptops at this year's CES that continue to be announced with knee-jerk predictability. Sony's also adding a touch-screen option to the Vaio T 14 that's already on sale.
Yes, having touch on a Windows 8 laptop is better than not having touch, but it's hard to get excited at all about its presence … Read more
LAS VEGAS--Though Sony announced five new Cyber-shot camera models at CES 2013, none of them are jaw-droppers.
However, one of them, the DSC-WX80, does give you a look at some features coming to Sony's higher-end Exmor R CMOS sensor-based cameras this year.
The $199 WX80 is the entry model with an Exmor R sensor, in this case 16 megapixels. That sensor gets you features like multishot shooting modes for improved low-light and backlit photos, 1080/60i AVCHD movie capture, 10fps burst shooting, and high-resolution, 360-degree panoramas.
New for 2013, these models get faster autofocus speeds and improved optical image … Read more
LAS VEGAS--One of the more simple fitness-oriented devices on exhibit here at CES 2013 is Vert, billed as the world's first wearable jump measurement system.
Vert attaches to your waistband, belt, cap, or wherever and calculates how high you jump by using a gyroscope and an accelerometer.
It performs more than 50 simultaneous calculations to calculate height with 96 percent accuracy, according to maker Mayfonk Athletic.
Smaller than a matchbox, the device has an OLED screen showing your altitude in inches. It can send the data to your iOS or Android mobile device via one of two Vert apps, which can track multiple user height records and jumping progress. … Read more
There's not a lot of new Google TV hardware here at CES 2013, but Asus is breathing some new life into the platform with the new Qube.
The boxy Asus Qube runs the latest version of Google TV, which means it features the redesigned PrimeTime guide and improved voice search capabilities. The hardware looks like a cross between a Boxee Box and the Vizio Co-Star, with rectangular edges and a chunky double-sided remote.
It's yet another Google TV box with a bewildering remote covered in buttons, but the Qube supports both motion control and voice search, which should … Read more
LAS VEGAS--Hisense has unwrapped two new Ultra HD (UHD) TV ranges at this year's CES, the flagship XT900 and the smaller XT880, with a 65-inch XT880 on display during its CES press conference.
The 4K UHDTV XT880 series of 3D and Wi-Fi-enabled Smart TVs will be available in 50-, 58-, and 65-inch sizes.
All of the TVs come with a range of features including Smart TV with onboard Wi-Fi, active 3D with two sets of glasses, and a 240Hz refresh rate. Additionally, the TV features a detachable USB camera for Skype calling, built-in gesture control, and facial recognition.
Pricing … Read more
LAS VEGAS--I used to try cleaning my godmother's pool with long, unwieldy nets and hoses, and always gave up in frustration.
With its rotating brushes, Mirra is designed to scrub any type of in-ground pool without using the pool's filtration system, a concept aimed at saving energy.