Sony CES 2018 live blog



For Sony, CES is a show of sheer, brute force. It’s all about a big, flashy showing from a consumer electronics giant. And unlike big competitors like Samsung and LG, Sony hasn’t spent much of the past few weeks showing its hand, so there’s going to be plenty of unknown here.

That said, if past years are any indication (as they nearly always are), this is going to be a big show for TV and audio offerings. Given the way pretty much every other announcement has gone this year, it seems like a safe bet that we’ll see plenty of announcements tied to voice-based AI like Google Assistant.

And, of course, this is Sony we’re talking about, so expect lots of general weirdness around the edges.

The Sony CES 2018 live blog starts at 5:00pm PST.


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:27 pm

To recap, a couple of new TVs and headphones. Pretty much everything else was already announced. That was a solid D-/C+ press conference. Maybe next time, Sony. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:26 pm

And Kaz is racing to the end of the world’s shortest Sony press conference. Thanks for joining us?


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:25 pm

Aibooo


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:25 pm

Kaz says Aibo is just the beginning, but no word on when it’s officially coming to our shores, sadly. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:24 pm

It’s impressive tech, but more importantly, it’s adorable. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:24 pm

Over time, Aibo will recognize you and deepen its emotional bond with its owners. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:24 pm

Kaz is holding the new, more adorable version of the dog, which already launched in Japan. It starts shipping soon to those who ordered in November. 


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:23 pm


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:23 pm

Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:23 pm

The company also showed off a concept car prototype back in November that’s pretty adorable. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:22 pm

And straight into the Xperia Hello — a household robot recently launched in Japan. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:22 pm

The company’s sensors are also being used in drones for climate tracking, agriculture and the like. 


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:21 pm


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:21 pm

No mention of the new Aibo beyond that, sadly. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:21 pm

“Our vision is to continue to introduce new products that make the ordinary extraordinary.”


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:21 pm

As he correctly notes, however, it was a bit ahead of its time in the first go-round. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:20 pm

Sony recently brought the beloved robotic dog back to life earlier this year. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:20 pm

Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:20 pm

KAz is talking AI and robotics now. 


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:20 pm

Kaz throws it back to an earlier time when he talked about this stuff.


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:19 pm

Bosch and Denso have already partnered with the company on the tech. Intel Moibleye, Nvidia, Hyundai, Kia, Nissan and Toyota are also using the company’s sensors to develop self driving cars. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:19 pm

That helps the vehicles see in blindspots where most drivers can’t.


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:18 pm

The sensors are also be using to help develop autonomous driving and enhance vehicle safety. More than 10 sensors are used on some cars to capture 360-degree video.


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:18 pm

As he noted, fairly, most cameras are rocking the company’s sensors, anyway, so the company still gets a cut of that. 


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:17 pm

Sony is big time in sensors so I’m very interested to see what he has to say.


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:17 pm

“I can see many of you are shooting the press conference with your non-Sony smartphones.”


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:17 pm


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:16 pm

Kaz is talking up the company’s Image sensors now. He’s really all over the place this time. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:16 pm

Kaz is talking about the company’s recent struggles in consumer electronics again. “There’s still so much we can do to meaningfully innovate.”


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:14 pm

They come with a charging case that gives them a total of nine hours of battery life. Those are starting to ship in the spring, for $179. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:14 pm

The WF-SP700N are a pair of splashproof, wireless earbuds with built-in noise cancelling. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:13 pm

All right, it’s time to talk personal audio.


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:13 pm

The X1 Ultimate is a new prototype chip for TV sets for 4K, 8K and OLED panels, processing high res video at a much higher speed. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:12 pm

All of the below will be available this spring. 


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:12 pm


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:12 pm

The Bravias work with Amazon Echo and Google Home devices. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:11 pm

The HT-Z9F is a new sound bar, featuring Dolby Atmos three dimensional acoustic. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:11 pm

The X900F features X-Motion Clarity, designed for high action video like sports. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:10 pm

The A8F Series is the company’s new Bravia set, featuring an X1 Extra processor and acoustic surface technology for better sound.


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:10 pm

K A N D O ~


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:09 pm

Okay, now we’re talking announcements. It’s time to talk TVs. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:08 pm

Kando — that’s the vibe the company is going for here. Art designed to move you emotionally. 


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:08 pm

Kaz looks like he’s singing the news in this one.


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:08 pm

And now it’s off to Sony Music. It was just fun to hear Kaz say “Sza,” honestly. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:07 pm

Jumanji was the number one movie in the North America box office over the weekend. Kaz is also talking up the great new Blade Runner, which did decidedly less well (my words, not his, obviously). 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:06 pm

Again, we’re just blazing through last year’s products. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:06 pm

He’s really speeding through now, talking up the company’s latest Xperia camera, which shoots some really spectacular slow motion video. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:06 pm

The company sold 5.9 million units sold over the holidays, bring the told PS4s sold to 73 million. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:05 pm

And straight into Sony’s gaming offerings. 


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:05 pm

Sony is very strong in the camera world right now – the alpha and RX cameras are well thought of. So I’m happy to hear Kaz chat about them.


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:05 pm

You line a bunch of them up in a circle and shoot in something akin to bullet time. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:04 pm

Straight into the RXO — an ultra compact, waterproof camera. A GoPro competitor of sorts. 


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:04 pm


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:03 pm

Interesting, the silent shutter makes it much better for shooting on the golf course. 


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:03 pm


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:03 pm

Apparently it’s really nice for shooting photos of Tiger Woods. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:03 pm

We’ve launched straight into cameras. He’s talking the company’s Alpha 9 mirrorless now. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:02 pm

Kaz is certain that the company is back on track and ready to deliver positive financial results (and gadgets, one hopes). 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:02 pm

Three Kazes, actually. There are two shots of him in the backing screen as well. SO MUCH KAZ. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:01 pm

Kaz Hirai is taking the stage and now we’re off for real!


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:01 pm

Kicking things off with an ad that’s a weird combo of gadget shots and Sony movies like Jumanji. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:00 pm

Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20185:00 pm

Volume just tripled… and now it’s going down. Volume knob trouble. and we’re off!


Brian Heater
January 8, 20185:00 pm

I can say with some certainly that this is the first time I recall hearing a Spanish language ballad before a Sony event. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:51 pm

No it’s some weird indie-folk song. This is a Spotify playlist designed to drive us mad. 


Lucas Matney
January 8, 20184:51 pm

Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:50 pm

We’re bored and listening to bad electronic music. Any questions? @ me: @bheater on Twitter.


Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:48 pm

Oh snap, it’s getting all EDM up here. 


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20184:48 pm

Unfortunately, he’ll be here all night, folks.


Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:48 pm

Also: power walkers. That’s more of a fast jog. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:47 pm

You know what else doesn’t run? Sony’s 4K OLEDs. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:47 pm

These colors don’t run, Devin. 


Lucas Matney
January 8, 20184:47 pm

If my patriotism offends you…


Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:47 pm

(He’s talking about Lucas, who loves his country)


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20184:46 pm

Some of us are wearing American flag button-downs.


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20184:45 pm

Update: We’re not all wearing sweaters.


Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:45 pm

Update: it’s getting very warm in here, and we’re all tech bloggers in sweaters. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:44 pm

“Sony” backwards is actually “YNot.” Very few people know that. 


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20184:42 pm

I’ll look into the tech behind the competing TV tech once the show gets started and I can get at the folks who know such things.


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20184:40 pm

LG went hard on OLED this morning (very early this morning). Then Samsung just trashed OLED in favor of Micro LED. What’s Sony’s play?


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20184:39 pm

Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20184:37 pm


Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:37 pm

Xperia handsets are always a possibility at these things, as well. The company company’s certainly announced those at past CESes, though with MWC coming up in a little of a month, it may just opt to keep its powder dry until then. 


Lucas Matney
January 8, 20184:36 pm

To further set the stage, “Waste a Moment” by Kings of Leon is playin


Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:36 pm

As mentioned above, Sony’s one of the few big names here that didn’t spill the beans ahead of the event. That said, it seems safe to assume we’ll getting the usual spread at the show: lots of TV, home hifi and personal audio news. 


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20184:35 pm

shout out to the guy blinking in the front row


Devin Coldewey
January 8, 20184:35 pm


Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:34 pm

It’s the usual Sony CES aesthetic, which is to say bright, even blindingly white shag carpeting and walls. 


Brian Heater
January 8, 20184:33 pm

And we’re in. Like always, Sony’s converted its convention center booth into a press conference space. 



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