Expanding their efforts in the 4K HD industry, Japanese company Sony have done more than most to promote the benefits of the ‘Ultra HD’ format, with their latest development being the upcoming launch of a ’4K Ultra HD’ media player.
Set to release with 10 ‘optimised films’ (The Amazing Spiderman, Battle: Los Angeles, Bad Teacher, The Karate Kid, The Other Guys, Salt, Total Recall 2012, That’s My Boy, The Bridge on the River Kwai, and Taxi Driver) pre-loaded, the ‘Sony FMP-X1 4K Ultra HD’ media player is naturally designed with Ultra HD TV sets in mind (claimed to be Sony’s range only), with the $699.99 device, due for release on 15 July in the USA, set to feature the ability to supply content via the company’s new ’4K Video Unlimited’ online service.
That content selection will take the form of an online store format, with the movies, TV shows, and ‘short videos’ featured on that service set to provide the hub of the platform, although those downloads (for either 24-hour rental or purchase) will start from the costly prices of $7.99 and $29.99, respectively.
The device is also noted as holding a storage capacity of 2TB for this content (which presumably will include the chance to upload and upscale your own pictures or videos), of which 400GB will be taken by the 10 pre-installed films. Further features include Ethernet, HDMI, USB, and SD additional storage compatibility, hinting at least at a customisable experience compatible with a range of formats.
Meanwhile, in what appears to be the only moderately positive pricing move for the circular product (which will be twice the cost of a 4K-supporting PlayStation 4, out by the end of the year), the FMP-X1 will be discounted by $200 for buyers who can prove ownership of a Sony Bravia 4K set (which the new device is optimised to work with), though those TV sets start at $5,000 themselves. As history has demonstrated with expensive new technologies, perhaps the best advice is to wait it out a few years until 4K HD becomes more mainstream… for now though, nothing is stopping you at marvelling at its potential for free: