It’s a common sight these days to see people carrying around more than one device. Though, with the plethora of portable music players already in market, one has to wonder if the upcoming Android powered Sony Walkman Z can still stand out from the rest.
In a SGNL by Sony YouTube video, Brian from the Sony Walkman team mentions that the Walkman Z is about superior sound quality and the music experience above everything else. But there are several factors that come into play when you’re talking about a great portable music player, for example the player itself, the quality of the music files as well as the earphones.
Targeted at music lovers, audio is the edge in the Walkman Z. A dedicated Walkman button launches and hides the music app even from the lock screen. It features Sony’s S-Master MX Digital Amplifier and 5 Clear Audio technologies built in. Packaged with Sony’s 13.5mm EX-HP in-ear earphones, the player supports major audio and video formats and includes a Micro-HDMI output as well as DLNA support allowing wireless transfer of media files to other DLNA-compatible devices. Battery wise, the player offers up to 20 hours of audio or 5 hours of video playback.
The Z runs Android version 2.3 (Gingerbread) giving full access to the Android Market for apps and such via Wi-Fi. The player highlights a 4.3-inch touch screen which is larger than the 3.5-inch screen on the iPod Touch. One of the more noticeable missing features is a camera. Then again, the Z is focused on the music so why clutter the player?
Inside the Sony Walkman Z is a 1GHz NVIDIA Tegra 2 dual-core processor. Audiophiles can choose from 8GB, 16GB or 32GB of built-in storage but there is no option for a microSD memory card. The Z also opts for a proprietary (WM-Port) USB charging cable instead of the more common micro-USB type.
Set to hit the U.S. in March this year, the Sony Walkman Z is priced at USD329.99 (32GB), USD279.99 (16GB) and USD249.99 (8GB) respectively. To date, there’s no word on a local release date but we will keep you posted.
It is safe to say that the portable music player market is saturated. Samsung has their Galaxy Player 50, Galaxy S Wi-Fi 4.0 and 5.0; Apple has their iPod range, not forgetting all the other types of music players out there. So the question is do we really need another?
Here’s a hands-on look at the Sony Walkman Z at CES 2012.