Sony revealed Sunday a system that will allow viewers of its Bravia flat-panel TV sets to access broadband video content, some of it in high-definition (HD).
The Bravia Internet Video Link system will be offered on most new models of Bravia TVs and can be accessed at the push of a few buttons on the remote control. The service is populated with a number of programmed broadband video content channels and initial partners include AOL, Yahoo and Sony-group companies Sony Pictures Entertainment, Sony BMG Music and online video site Grouper.
In a demonstration of the service at the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas Sunday, Stan Glasgow, president and chief operating officer of Sony Electronics Inc., accessed a music video, movie trailer and user-generated content through the service.
Viewers will also be able to call up local news, weather and information through RSS (really simple syndication) feeds specifically created for the service.
All of it will be accessed through Sony's "Xross Media Bar" (the first word is pronounced 'cross'), a replacement for the conventional TV menu that is already in use on Sony TV sets in Japan, and on the company's PlayStation Portable and PlayStation 3 game devices.
Bravia Internet Video Link will be offered at no charge although viewers will have to buy an adapter that plugs into the back of the television set. The price of the adapter will be announced in the next few months, Sony said. Users will also need a broadband Internet connection.
The first Bravia sets to support the service will be the S-series, which was also announced at CES on Sunday. The TV sets come in 46-inch, 40-inch, 32-inch and 26-inch screen sizes and will ship in the U.S. in the spring, said Sony.
Sony doesn't have any current plans to offer the service outside of the US.