Due to be released in
the coming months, Sony has announced their 400 and
500 series players that are more akin in shape and
size to the iPod Shuffle, but with OLED displays.
The 500 series units add an FM tuner to the mix.
Otherwise, both players are basic straight ahead
portable units with minimal frills.
The 512MB NW-E405
will sell for $130, while the 1GB NW-407 sells for
$180. Again, these prices put them right line with
the Shuffle. The 512MB NW-E505 will retail for $150,
while the NW-E507 rounds things out at $200.
Wall Street took
kindly to the pricing of all the above units,
raising Sony's stock price, but more importantly
causing a drop in Apple's share price by about 5%.
The Street is obviously impressed by the effort and
resources Sony is plowing into winning market in the
digital portable arena. None of these players may be
an iPod Killer, but put enough of them in Wall-Marts
across the country and they probably will sell a
respectable number of units. Mostly, this is because
Sony is not employing a price premium on their
digital music products.