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Sony's LocationFree TV

Techstination feature for Tuesday, September 28, 2004

A blast from the past… wireless TV. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. There was a time….when all TVs received signals wirelessly. Today, most sets are tethered to cable or satellite boxes. But a number of companies are coming out with portable LCD screens that use home network technology to receive signals from those boxes. Sony calls its system LocationFree TV. Director of TV business development Kaz Hirai…

"LocationFree TV is a new device for enjoying AV content anywhere in your house and outside the house by using wireless technology and Internet technology. We have two screen size monitors. One is twelve inch and the other is seven inch widescreen."

Using a touch screen…you control a base station that connects to any video source. Cable or satellite boxes, Tivos or DVD players. You can also browse the Web and check email from the LocationFree screens. And because they have Ethernet and WiFi capability…you can take them on the road. And the neat thing is…you can access your TV content…live or recorded…from wherever you have a high speed Internet connection. There are some drawbacks…limitations on how far you can be away from the base station around your home….and the inability to connect the LocationFree system to a PC…for digital video, photos and music stored there. Sony isn't predicting how many of these it will sell…but…

"This is just the first step for creating a new market. We are expanding to some opportunities for enjoying AV content."

The 12 inch LocationFree system will sell for about 15 hundred dollars while the 7 inch model is 400 dollars less. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.