With a little help from Peyton Manning and Dale Earnhardt Jr., we’ve just launched a fully integrated marketing campaign around what we are calling Sony’s “HDNA.” It’s all about how high-definition capability and technology runs through Sony’s “genes” and is present in a host of our professional and consumer products. And while some might consider it a bit boastful, the concept rings true. In my experience, there is no other company with as many cards in the high-definition deck. We are all over HD from every angle, which I think is pretty cool. Check out this video on Crackle, which puts the campaign in perspective.
A good place to start is our pro business in the broadcasting, cinema and production worlds. Check out a pro football game on CBS or any other major sports event for that matter, and chances are they are using Sony professional HD gear to shoot and broadcast the action. I remember being on hand with the press in 1998 at the CBS Sports studios in New York for the first HD broadcast of an NFL game between the Jets and Bills, which was quite a thrill at the time.
On prime time network television, 90 percent of shows shot digitally like The Office and Rescue Me are being produced with HD equipment manufactured by Sony. Then there are the late night shows, including Leno and Lettermen, as well as morning fare like The Today Show and Good Morning America.
Sony has also teamed with Panavision to develop a high-definition camera that is being used by filmmakers of the like of George Lucas and James Cameron, just to name a couple. Now there are movies of all sorts – be they from the major Hollywood studios to unknown filmmakers on a limited budget — being shot and produced with Sony cameras, editing decks, switchers, etc.
Sony HD technology is being used in other professional areas as well, such as video conferencing, medical electronics, educational institutions, various businesses and government agencies, along with the growing number of mega-churches reaching their vast flocks in high-def.
Now let’s take a look at how HD crosses virtually all of Sony’s consumer product categories. Obviously, it begins with the immensely popular BRAVIA flat-panel LCD and rear production 3-LCD and SXRD micro-display television sets. By the way, if you have the room for them, I believe these SXRD sets offer the best HD picture money can buy now that direct-view CRT televisions are no longer in style. Going back again to 1998, I was on hand at a press briefing in New York when Sony became the first company in the U.S. to introduce a high-definition CRT television (part of our FD Trinitron WEGA line of HDTV’s at the time) with an attached digital tuner.
Sony HD consumer products go on to encompass Blu-ray Disc players; VAIO computers with internal BD drives, HD editing capability and high-def screens; Cyber-shot and Alpha digital cameras, including one with an HDMI output; three formats (tape, disc and hard drive) of Handycam camcorders with high-definition capability; internal Blu-ray computer drives; BD recording media in a variety of capacities; and, coming soon, our BRAVIA Internet Video Link module that can stream HD content like movie trailers and music videos to BRAVIA televisions.
Then, of course, there’s the high-definition PS3 console with its Blu-ray capability built right into the unit, along with numerous videogames produced in HD. And, I’d be remiss not to mention hundreds of BD movie and music titles coming out from Sony Pictures and Sony BMG Music.
Clearly, HD is a cornerstone of this company’s DNA. And in this regard, to use another recent advertising slogan, Sony is “Like No Other.”