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back to article Sony: Walkman, meet Android

Sony has launched an Android-based Walkman, the F800, with which it hopes to topple the supremacy Apple's iPod Touch holds in the PMP market. Good luck. The Sony Walkman F800 boasts a 3.5in display and runs Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, providing access to Google Play and its wide array of apps and games. It'll come in 8GB, …

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Anonymous Coward

How much ?

Does it have a memory card slot ?

Does it have a camera ?

If no to the above then it's a dead duck.

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Meh

Re: How much ?

32GB one will set you back....... £275 as reported in a UK computer mag review.

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WTF?

Re: How much ?

Really? A camera is a required factor in a media player these days? Who knew... I'll get rid of my iPod immediately...

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Re: How much ?

The ipod touch has a camera. At the price they're seeting, I assume that's what they're competing against, the ipod that has everything an iphone has minus the ability to call.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: How much ?

32gb for £275 then it's a dead duck. A 32GB ipod touch on Amazon is £206.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: How much ?

Pricing fail, Sony still don't get it.

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Anonymous Coward

Uh?

The phone part... it is missing!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Uh?

There's still one or two people who prefer to keep their phone and music player separate.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Re: Uh?

Thanks, Captain Obvious; that was rather the point.

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Damnit....

.... someone please bring out an MP3 with a decent capacity (like 160gb please!) so I can finally get rid of my only iThingie....

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Re: Damnit....

Or preferably even more than 160. I find it frustrating than even the iPod classic has been stalled at 160 for years, we really should be up to 240 or 320 by now.

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Re: Damnit....

Especially if it moves to SSD rather than spinnyplatter.... That way you get more capacity, more battery life...

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Linux

Re: Damnit....

@Pooka

My friend bought a Cowon, which he is really pleased with.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Cowon-160GB-Portable-Media-Player/dp/B0047ZB9XQ/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1342685903&sr=8-4

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Joke

Re: Damnit....

160Gb? That's tens of thousands of pounds' worth of music*. You must have one hell of a disposable income!

* - according to Microsoft.

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Re: Damnit....(Miek)

yeah, not bad. But i'd rather have one with no fancy colour screen, or all the extra gumph that jacks the price up. A 120gb+ Hdd with a 10 line b/w display and a headphone socket would suit me fine.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Damnit....

Surely the answer is to just have a microSDXC slot, then you would never run out.

SD = Up to 4GB

SDHC = Up to 32GB

SDXC = Up to 2TB

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Thumb Up

Re: Damnit....

Pooka - massively aggree! (Especially seen as Napster has forced me into transferring via playlists.... which I just don't like)

Miek - Shiny...... have to seriously consider that!

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Angel

Re: Damnit....

My Archos AV300 had 80GB in 2005. Where have you been?

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Headmaster

Samsung did it first

Morgan were punting a Galaxy S media player for ages. Identical to the phone, it seemed, but no phone bits and, I suspect, no GPS. At £125 I might have been tempted, save for Samsung's insane belief that noone would ever want to edit a playlist.

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Re: Samsung did it first

Couldn't you just download another audio player that *did* let you edit the playlist? If it was like the Galaxy S it would have had the Market wouldn't it?

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Anonymous Coward

Google Play?

What's the point since you can't use it to buy music in the UK.

Didn't Sony own some other media shop?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Google Play?

Buy music?????

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FAIL

Re: Google Play?

I'm guessing, (and this is only a guess), that people might want to go onto Google Play to, erm, download Applications? And all the other stuff you CAN get on there?

Just a hunch you understand.

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FAIL

Re: Google Play?

I thought the main purpose of a Walkman was to play music, but you clearly know better @Bodhi.

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Re: Google Play?

Ever heard of Spotify? You'll need Google Play to download their app if you want to use it to play music.

There are many other music apps on Google Play too.

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Meh

But will it have the necessary backend

If it doesn't have something really clever to make it incredibly easy to get music from Amazon and your own collection, then it's a dead duck indeed.

And it will have to be dirt cheap since most phones have more space than that.

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Portable music player?

So, it's like a phone that can't make phone calls or take pictures or use the internet w/out wifi?

Has anyone at Sony paused to ask themselves who their target market for these is?

The people who don't have smartphones wouldn't go for an android-based music player; otherwise they'd have a smartphone:

If it's because they can't afford a carrier-subsidized smartphone, they won't be able to afford this either.

If it's because they're too old and/or stupid to use one, they won't have a better time with this.

If it's because they're a curmudgeon who doesn't approve of new technology, they're still using the old walkman, the kind with the cassette tape, and if you ask them to switch to this newfangled thing, they'll react with profanity or a story about how life was back in their day.

The people who do have smartphones, on the other hand, are already carrying a device exactly like this, only with always-on internet access and better specs, so why buy a redundant device...?

I mean, if it was disposably cheap, so you can use it when you'd be afraid to use the cellphone, sure - something to listen to in the bathtub, or when you're going to the annual kleptomaniacs anonymous meeting. But this doesn't look anywhere near that cheap.

For that matter, who the hell even buys iPod Touch's anymore? (less people every year)

Sony, I've got a pro tip for you: Don't jump into a market where the market leader is gaining market share while their sales into said market fall 30% year on year (see iPod touch sales figures).

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Facepalm

Missing the point

So I have a phone and a tablet but I also have a music device (yeah yeah in this case they are all iDevices but I use the generic term in this case cuz I can).

Phone -> Makes phone calls and some apps, email, and mobile TV

Tablet -> Apps, web, and games. Sometimes video calls.

Music device -> music, supports the incar dash and has a much higher capacity than the phone. That way I have all my music in the car, and with the link up the car supports (Pioneer thingy) have playlists, album covers and the like

Now a 32Gb device like this Sony wouldnt work. I have 140Gb on the ipod. But a phone device would never come close. I could do USB into the Pioneer, but the biggest thumb drive I have isnt close (64Gb).

So yeas, despite the fact that it wouldnt work for **YOU** (or some others), there is a market segment out there that needs the devices. (Just like that long forgotten market segment that wants a phone that is well just a phone which is why you can still buy those strangely enough!).

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Re: Portable music player?

Hold off your horses with slagging off the iTouch,

Its ten times better than any other device out there for playing music, games, viewing JPEGs and all sorts of other things - it will act as a phone as well if you have a personal wifi spot on you - much cheaper than the so called 'smartphones' that have seemed to have taken over the world.

As for lack of sales thereof, perhaps it has something to do with the fact Apple have note updated the iTouch since 2010, unless of course if you think adding White is a update.

I like it, my daughter prefers it to the iPad 3 and basically thats all that matters me.

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Re: Portable music player?

> Has anyone at Sony paused to ask themselves who their target market for these is?

Actually, I know LOADS of people who have work smartphones (usually - but not always - Blackberries, the poor bastards) and they are so limited in storage that they can't use them as a personal music/media device. So, either they go out and buy their own smartphone - and why bother when work are prepared to let you use theirs for all your personal calls, texts and data? - or they get an MP3 player. My sister has been looking for AGES for an MP3 player that would be able to connect to some decent portable speakers without using a 3.5mm jack cable and that isn't made by the fruity firm (iTunes phobic, like all sensible people are). Nothing really stood out but this looks like it might do the trick if it docks with the speaker on the Sony website.

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Coat

Re: Portable music player?

"less people every year..."

I think that'll be 'fewer people every year' ...unless they are 'lesser mortals''

[dusts off grammar facist jacket and hang it up...]

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Portable music player?

"Hold off your horses with slagging off the iTouch,"

If you're going to pontificate, maybe it's best not to draw extra attention to how ill-informed you are by getting the *name* of the device wrong?

It's called an iPod Touch, and you're wrong anyway. HTH HAND and shrimp.

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FAIL

Re: Portable music player?

Evidently, you don't get on to Apple Fanbois sites all that often - its generically referred too as the 'iTouch' and not an iPod Touch - although in reality, its more like a stripped down version of the iPhone - hence, its actually a nice bit of kit, particularly for those who hate being tied to mobile networks, also, I JB mine, so not jailed in the Apple ecosystem either - a win win is all I can say and in reference to the Sony device, its 2012 and they can only manage 32G of space - the iTouch launched with 64G and all in all represents better value than a bloody iPad!!!!!!!!!!

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bep

Re: Portable music player?

You missed the bit about the battery life, didn't you? Some of us already have smartphones but don't want to run the risk of running out of battery while we are listening to music so we can't make calls or do anything else until we find a charger. We aren't bothered about running down the battery on our music player though.

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JDX
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So, it's like a phone that can't make phone calls or take pictures or use the internet w/out wifi?

Yeah that'll never take off. Apart from the millions of iPods sold every year of course, but clearly only iDiots buy them so you're right, it's a market without any consumers.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Portable music player?

"Evidently, you don't get on to Apple Fanbois sites all that often - its generically referred too as the 'iTouch' and not an iPod Touch"

Really? It's also known as the 'iPad Nano', for wannabe Fanbois on a limited budget.

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How is it crippled?

It's a Sony Walkman so it must be crippled some how. It seems that everything newer then the original tape Walkman has been screwed up some how.

Crappy software to get stuff off your PC? Custom cable? Limited format support? DRM?

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WTF?

Re: How is it crippled?

Most likely, it is infected with DRM; and that alone makes it crippled, at least in this `still smarting from that dammed Sony root-kit infected CD` person's POV.

Sony, there is no limit to their arrogance, and they truly deserve all the shit directed at them. Their C level suite `got off` too easy for the root-kit fiasco. Any other mope would be doing time.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: How is it crippled?

> It's a Sony Walkman so it must be crippled some how.

Do they still use SonicStage? *shudder*

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FAIL

Re: How is it crippled?

If something is infected that's that utter PoS iCrap - impossible to use without that outdated, luaghable bugfest called iTunes...

...talk about stupid, dumb, arrogant (late) C-levels.

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JDX
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Re: How is it crippled?

I have an iPod and I put songs on it from Windows. I don't have iTunes installed.

And, iTunes is (allegedly) much better these days.

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MJI
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Re: How is it crippled?

Rememebr their history - it evolved.

They had CD Tape and MD Walkmans, the first HDD Walkmans were sort of based on the MD ones. MD uses ATRAC which sounds better than similar rate MP3, so the first HDs were basically using a HDD as a giant MD.

They finally went MP3 with AFAIR the HD5, and was at the time the audiophiles choice of PMP.

I own a MD Walkman, see no need to change to a MP3 player as I use it rarely.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: How is it crippled?

This time, the rootkit IS the OS!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: How is it crippled?

Yep I still have MD player(s), got one in the car, the CD->MD copier and the original player. Having just 5 MD's in the car is the equivalent of having about 20 CD's, more than enough selection alongside FM radio.

The sound quality of the original portable is excellent with decent headphones, far better than any telephone i've listened to even when listening to the high compression (approx 4.5 CDs per disk), plus the player runs for ~40 hours off of one AA battery.

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MJI
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MD

I have a home deck a Walkman and a car head unit (with 10 CD changer in boot).

My music storage is a ice cream tub full of MDs

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Anonymous Coward

topple the supremacy Apple's iPod Touch holds in the PMP market. Good luck.

It already does. Have you heard how good the walkmans sound and how shit the ipods sound?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: topple the supremacy Apple's iPod Touch holds in the PMP market. Good luck.

No, I haven't, nor have my international grade audio broadcast engineer colleagues, who can diagnose flaws in the broadcast chain by ear alone. Sometimes the suggestibility of empty prejudice and the attendant empty ranting is just adorable.

(Bla bla bla, double blind test, etc.)

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Stop

Meh.

Could they not make this thing a little more interesting? To us jaded first worlders, this is not too compelling. I assume this it Apple in the dust when it comes to sound quality, which should be easy. From the 1st gen iPod on, iDevices have never really sounded "great" but always merely "good". So that's that and it might be the sole reason for this to exist in the first place. But

• 32GB? Really? I have a Nokia N9 with 64GB at my disposal that sounds pretty great and comes with a halfway decent player. And it's also the slickest phone in the known universe. So give me 64 or even better 128GB – or at least a cardslot. Something!

• Formats! From what I seee his thing plays neither FLAC nor ALAC (which is open by now!). If you want to cater to audiophiles you have to offer lossless support.

Who is the target?! SONY fanboys that are too much in love with their old candybar phone?

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Anonymous Coward

I think not.

Had a Sony phone years ago, utter cack, then a year or so later utterly dead cack. Now just bought a simple walkman that simply doesn't play music or radio. I'll keep that for calls, and use my Huawei G300 for media, games, internet, and calls as and when I unlock it.

Just my 2 pence.

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Re: I think not.

Had a Samsung phone years ago, utter cack, then a couple of months later utterly dead cack.

Samsung are, I hear, doing rather well in phones now.

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