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Thursday, January 31 12:00 AM ET

Sony Announces New
Power Outlet Standard

By Brian Briggs

New York, NY – Tom Kuratagi, President of Sony Electronics, announced that in the fall of 2008 all Sony electronic products would be featuring the new Sony eConnect HD electrical plugs instead of standard power connections.

eConnect HD"Power connector standards haven't changed for years and vary from country to country.  We think a unifying standard like Sony eConnect HD will broaden the market for electronics as well as offer features previously missing from power connectors," said Kuratagi.

Many think the seeming victory of Sony's Blu-Ray over HD-DVD standard emboldened the company to make the move.

The new standard plug will require new outlets (pictured left) for homes around the world. Kuratagi said the new connector had something for everyone, "For consumers, eConnect HD will be able to handle HD electricity up to 1080 Hz which is crucial for the next generation of electronics.  For electricity producers, the connector will stop electricity theft by consumers by preventing time-shifting of electric power from outlets into rechargeable batteries."

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Many critics don't think that consumers will rewire their entire home just to use a Sony product. "Sony has made some boneheaded moves in the past, but this tops them all, including ATRAC," said Tom Warrick of HD-electronics.pl.

However, many of the largest utility companies in the world have embraced the standard, and the world's largest union of electricians has also lent its support, so consumers may not have a choice but to convert.

More information can be found on the Sony Web site at http://www.sony.jp/poweroverall/.

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