lately, and now Sony is getting into the game. At CES last month, they
showed off their new VOD service, called Qriocity, which will run on any
Sony device that has a XMB. The service wil
l offer both HD and SD movies.
Blog SonyInsider believes (who saw the service in use at CES) believes
that it will be an all-you-can-eat subscription model, similar to
Napster. It will be out on all Sony devices with a XMB (XrossMediaBar).
Most famously, the PlayStation 3 and PSP run an XMB, but some BRAVIA
HDTVs, Blu-Ray players and Cyber-shot cameras also are equipped with the
Obviously, we won't see the Qriocity platform on the digital cameras,
but if they can bring the streaming VOD service to the PSP, that might
be a huge application for their popular gaming portable. We've seen a
ton of IPTV set-top boxes come out in the last year, and if Sony can
integrate their own IPTV/VOD platform right into the TV, without need
for an additional set-top box, this could really be a boon for IPTV.
SonyInsider reported that the interface for Qriocity was great looking
and showed rich album art . Looks have never been Sony's problem, as
the XMB has always been popular for it's UI, and it even won a Technical
Emmy for it's appearance. One advantage with Sony running it's own VOD
service versus all the small startups is their connection to movie
studios, both through Blu-Ray and Sony Pictures Entertainment.
20th Century Fox, Paramount, Disney, Lionsgate, Warner Brothers,
Universal, MGM and Sony's own studio will all provide movies for the
service at launch, which is a pretty impressive showing. SonyInsider,
who tried the service at CES with a 6Mbps connection said it looked like
720p/1080i quality … and was certainly no Blu-ray.
No word on pricing or a solid release date, but Sony says the new
service is coming sometime in 2010.