Sending another (admittedly pretty) digital picture frame into an already overcrowded, under-innovated field, Sony has announced is US$300 Vaio CP1, which boasts wireless networking, RSS feed integration and - most interestingly - Shoutcast radio streaming. The picture display capabilities are also above average, as the frame can show photos directly from its 128MB of internal storage, a wide variety of common media cards or even Picasa albums stored online.
The RSS headlines can be overlaid on the photos, as can a clock. As you can see above, Sony has eschewed tacky photo frame styling for a sleek, minimal look, which makes the somewhat steep price tag hurt a bit less. The network, RSS and audio streaming are welcome additions to normal frame fare, but as the sole widgets on this US$300 frame, they are as much reminders that this apparently capable hardware is being underutilised as they are useful features. The CP1 will be available at Sony Style stores and online sometime in mid-October. Full press release below. [Sony]
DENVER (CEDIA Booth #600), Sept. 3, 2008 ⎯ Sony today unveiled the wireless VAIO® CP1 Wi-Fi photo frame, making it easier than ever to share digital images as well as receive news and stream Internet radio in real-time.
Utilizing built-in Wi-Fi technology, the CP1 model lets you stream photos from a VAIO PC directly to the device. Featuring more than 16 million colours and 800x480 resolution, photos locked away on your PC will now come to life on the photo frame's brilliant 7-inch LCD screen.
In addition to streaming images from a VAIO PC, the CP1 model can also connect to Google™ Picasa™ web albums. This enables you to view up to four web albums simultaneously, as well as upload photos directly to a Picasa account.
"How many times have you uploaded images to our PC— vowing to share them— never to see them again," said Xavier Lauwaert, product manager for VAIO product marketing at Sony Electronics. "This new frame provides an easy way to retrieve and share these precious memories that otherwise would have been forgotten."
In addition to its ability to wirelessly access photos, the CP1 model can display images from compatible Memory Stick® media, SD cards or digital still cameras providing instant access to your latest shots. It is also CompactFlash® media card-compatible, making it convenient for those who use a digital SLR camera.
And with 128MB internal storage, up to 100 digital images can be saved directly to the new photo frame for viewing anytime.
Keeping your images and slideshows organized is easy as well. Content is grouped into sections called "frames," making it easy to enjoy photos, information and music. You can choose from Slideshow— for movie-like presentations, Flow— which creates a slideshow with fun, special-effects, and Dissolve— a more traditional view that fades images into one another.
It also has an RSS (Really Simple Syndication) reader built-in, which enables it to grab news headlines and entertainment content from the Internet and display it along with your slideshows. Operating in real-time, the RSS function provides you up-to-the-minute information.
The new CP1 model also features built-in stereo speakers and an Internet radio player for enriching slideshows with your favourite style of music.
Other features include a digital/analog clock and the ability to save energy by dimming the screen automatically when a room's lights are turned off.
The VAIO CP1 digital photo frames will retail for about $300. They will be available at Sony Style® stores and online at HYPERLINK "http://www.sonystyle.com/cp1" www.sonystyle.com/pr/cp1 starting in mid-October.