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Sony Unveils New BD-Live Blu-ray Players

Posted by: , 07:50 AEDT, Tue March 4, 2008

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Sony announced two new Blu-ray Disc player models that include new features such as BonusView and BD-Live
Sony updated its Blu-ray Disc player line today with two new models that will be capable of accessing advanced interactive features such as BonusView and BD-Live.

The BDP-S350 and BDP-S550 models both support BonusView (Picture-in-Picture) featured on some of the new Blu-ray Disc theatrical releases. The BDP-S350 model is BD-Live ready featuring an Ethernet port for easy firmware update and access to Internet-based interactive content features. The BSP-S550 is BonusView and BD-Live capable when it ships.

Both models also feature an external port for local storage, so users can add optional storage device. The BDP-S550 ships with a 1GB storage device.

The BD-Live or Profile 2.0 BD players are required to have Internet/network connection, Picture-in-Picture (PiP), Audio mixing (secondary audio), 1 GB of storage and Virtual File System (VFS). Until now, only Sony's PS3 and a Panasonic BD player were close to fulfill those requirements.

BonusView is Sony’s term for picture-in-picture technology that was mandated for all Blu-ray Disc hardware last fall. Picture-in-picture features are typically used for video commentaries in movies, and is something commonly found amongst top-tier HD DVD releases. Several new Blu-ray Disc releases are beginning to incorporate the technology.

BD-Live incorporates an Ethernet port for Internet connectivity, both for firmware updates and for bonus web-enabled features. HD DVD players have used its Ethernet support for basic bonus functions such as extended special features, trailers, trivia and surveys. Blu-ray Disc movies with such extras should hit the market later this year.


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