Sony Corporation will exhibit at the CES 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada, held from Tuesday, 7 January 2020.
Sony seeks to deliver products, content, and services that resonate with people and affect a positive impact on society, based on its Purpose to “fill the world with emotion, through the power of creativity and technology.” Sony Corporation’s President & CEO Kenichiro Yoshida spoke at the Sony press conference held ahead of the exhibition’s public opening, stating “Creativity is a powerful driving force that moves Sony forward. When it is combined with our technology, it is unstoppable.” He then proceeded to introduce Sony’s latest offerings and new developments from its electronics and entertainment businesses.
Next to take the stage was Jim Ryan (President and CEO, Sony Interactive Entertainment), who announced that PlayStation 4 has now cumulatively sold through more than 106 million units worldwide, and that PlayStation™Network had reached 103 million monthly active users. He then discussed the cutting-edge technology and features of PlayStation®5, slated to launch this holiday season, and unveiled the new logo design for the first time ever. He added, “our promise to the 100 million strong PlayStation community is to offer the biggest and best in content, and to deliver unique experiences to gamers with unprecedented speed.”
In live sports production, Sony presented the recent achievement of a joint proof of concept trial with NBC Sports and Verizon at an American football game. David Mazza (CTO, NBC Sports Group), took the stage and noted the expectations for Sony’s technologies on media production for the broadcasts and wireless communication technology, which brings new possibilities to the live sports production workflow.
Furthermore, Yoshida stated that, “It’s not an exaggeration to say that Mobile has been the mega-trend of the last decade. I believe the next mega-trend will be mobility,” as he unveiled a prototype vehicle incorporating imaging and sensing technologies that contribute to safer and more reliable autonomous driving, and an array of highly-advanced electronics technologies that together deliver an unprecedented in-car entertainment experience. He concluded his presentation by stating that in addition to striving to contribute to society, “Sony will continue to evolve as a creative entertainment company with a solid foundation of technology.”
Main Products and Prototypes Being Showcased
The Sony booth introduces a range of initiatives that harness the power of creativity and technology, under the theme of sustainable value creation that all of Sony’s diverse businesses strive to achieve as part of its corporate direction of “getting closer to people.” Exhibits range from technologies Sony is pursuing in order to get closer to creators and users by enabling them to deliver ‘reality,’ such as high resolution video and sound in three dimensional space, in addition to ‘real-time’ technologies that support every stage of the production process through to the viewing experience, as well as various combinations of these technologies.
Contributing to Society Through the Delivery of Safety and Reliability
Sony will demonstrate the contribution it intends to make to realizing a highly advanced autonomous driving society, and the new emotional experiences it aims to deliver in the world of mobility.
- Evolutions in Imaging and Sensing Technologies in the Realm of Mobility
“Safety Cocoon” represents a safe-zone concept which supports vehicle safety in various daily driving situations by detecting 360 degrees around the vehicle, enabling early preparation to help evade risk. At the Sony booth, visitors can experience advancements in the Sony imaging and sensing technologies listed below, which support the realization of this concept. Through Sony’s imaging and sensing technologies, which are beyond the human eye, it aims to contribute to the achievement of safe, reliable, and comfortable mobility experiences.
- CMOS image sensors which achieve high sensitivity, high definition and high dynamic range while also suppressing LED flicker to deliver accurate object recognition, even in situations where conventionally detection has been difficult.
- Solid State LiDAR which uses highly accurate distance measurement to gain a precise 3D grasp of real-life spaces.
- Sensor fusion technology which merges the capabilities of sensors of varied attributes to enable early and accurate recognition, even in challenging conditions such as fog, backlight and night-time driving.
- Time-of-Flight (ToF) in-cabin sensing solutions use distance measurement technology to detect and recognize people and objects inside the car. This information is used to provide an optimized infotainment system with intuitive interfaces such as gesture control and improve safety and comfort inside the vehicle.
- New Mobility Proposals Pursuing Comfort and Entertainment
Sony’s efforts in the area of mobility – such as pursuing safety, reliability, comfort and entertainment – are being positioned as a new initiative, named “VISION-S.” The first prototype vehicle to result from “VISION-S” will be showcased at the Sony booth. This prototype incorporates Sony’s imaging and sensing technologies, as well as on-board software regulated using Sony’s AI, telecommunication and cloud technologies, in order to continuously update and evolve its features.
A total of 33 sensors including CMOS image sensors and ToF sensors are embedded within the vehicle, in order to detect and recognize people and objects inside and outside the car, and provide highly advanced driving support. Sony’s “360 Reality Audio” provides a deep and immersive audio experience through speakers built into each seat to encapsulate passengers in sound. The front seats face a panoramic screen on which rich and diverse content can be enjoyed through an intuitive user interface. Sony will continue to combine its advanced technologies to deliver greater safety and reliability, while also striving to inspire new emotion through revolutionary in-car entertainment experiences.
Helping Creators Realize Their Dreams
Sony is bringing about a technological revolution at every stage of the creative process, from production to when content reaches audiences, in order to further inspire creators and help them deliver their work to viewers and listeners.
Transforming Live Sports Broadcasting through Technology
Advances in 5G and AI technologies are bringing new artistic and video production workflow possibilities to creators.
- 5G Proof of Concept Trial
Sony conducted a proof of concept trial in December 2019, by capturing video of a live American football game with a 5G-connected camera, showing how 5G can allow for more creative and untethered camerawork while also reducing set-up time and costs. Visitors to the Sony booth will be able to see a video introducing this initiative, and also the equipment used during the trial including Sony’s PXW-Z450 shoulder camcorder, Xperia 5G mmWave device that enables high-speed data uplink, and a prototype transmitter box that encodes and transmits high-quality video in real-time.
- AI-based Real-time Video Analytics
Sony is also proposing new video experiences that further enhance the excitement of sports through its AI-based real-time video analytics technology. The booth will feature a table tennis demonstration by athletes, and the game will be captured on multiple devices including Sony’s HDC-P50 POV system camera and the cameras with Sony’s unique high-speed vision sensors. From the image, the athletes’ postures and the flight path of the ball are instantly analyzed, and CG characters will mimic the movements based on estimations of the athletes’ postures by deep learning technology. The booth will also exhibit a demo video showing the number of times the ball rotated by analyzing super-slow-motion video.
- Empowering Creators’ Imaginations through 3D Volumetric Visual Technology
・ 3D Spatial Reality Display Technology
Sony’s unique Eye-sensing Light Field Display uses high-speed vision sensors and face recognition algorithms to enable super high precision spatial reality experience not found in conventional naked-eye 3D displays. It can be easily applied to VR (virtual reality) and AR (augmented reality) content, providing a versatile volumetric content creation environment to creators in various fields such as entertainment and product design.
・ Virtual Production Technology using 3D Volumetric Capture
The Sony booth also features a virtual production set which transforms the way motion pictures and TV shows are made. The set has been captured from the Sony Pictures studio lot as photo-realistic volumetric data, and is shown as a background image on a Crystal LED display. The background changes in real time with the movement of the camera, ensuring the final image has the proper perspective and depth. Virtual production empowers the creator’s imagination by allowing directors, cinematographers, and actors to experience the scene as if they are really there, and provides creative flexibility where film production can take place at any time.
- New Content Creation Environment Provided by Large Screen, High Resolution Display System
As TVs continue to trend towards larger screens, and more content with higher resolutions and in HDR (Higher Dynamic Range) is created, there is a corresponding need for comprehensive, accurate evaluation of content on the professional monitors used by creators. In a professional editing room setup with a 4K x 2K Crystal LED display system (220 inch), visitors will be able to experience ongoing and future developments in the production environment for movies, TV shows, and online content.
Enriching People’s Hearts Through the Delivery of Emotional Experiences
Sony is showcasing new products featuring the proprietary technologies previously found in its BRAVIA flagship MASTER Series. The 8K LED TV “Z8H” series brings the stunning picture quality delivered by its best-in-class Picture Processor X1 Ultimate as well as Sony’s unique new “Frame Tweeter,” which delivers a Sound-from-Picture Reality experience while maintaining a slim design. Additionally, the OLED TV “A8H” series newly features X-Motion Clarity, which draws fast-moving images clearly, while maintaining brightness. The TVs offer an experience of high picture and sound quality that make a difference on a large screen.
Sony has also announced the expansion of devices compatible with 360 Reality Audio, the immersive audio experience that became initially available in North America and Europe in fall 2019. At the Sony booth, visitors can experience 360 Reality Audio by combining headphones and smartphones with participating streaming services, while a reference exhibit demonstrates how 360 Reality Audio can be enjoyed through a sound bar and a wireless speaker for an experience that feels just like being in a space with artists.