Behind the Scenes – Sony X-Series – Press Launch

13 05 2009
"How do i check my voicemail again?"

"So how do i check my voicemail again?"

 The new Sony X-series Walkman has been released  – citing itself as the most serious contender to the iTouch.  With an Organic LED screen (something to do with carbon bits rather than vegetables) it offers a brighter, clearer picture for much less power.  Along with noise-canceling technology, Sony are marketing the device as akin to having a ‘cinema in your pocket’.

This week, to emphasise the theatrical feeling, Sony converted a London Underground tube carriage into a cinema!  
For the press launch on Tuesday 12th May, 2009 there was popcorn, pick ‘n’ mix and model Danielle Bux dressed as an usherette. How do i know this?  I was actually there…

The credit crunch takes its toll on Danielle Bux

The credit crunch taking its toll on the WAGs

Preparation

At 8:30am i arrived at Stanmore station (the far end of the Jubilee Line) to help unload the required materials for converting a carriage.  

Mind the gap

Mind the gap

 

Our very own train took us all the way to Charing Cross (how did they do that when it’s not even on the Jubilee Line?!) and we parked up in a disused section of the Bakerloo Line.

We got to travel right at the front!

We got to travel right at the front!

We then had 1 hour to convert the 15 metre carriage with red velvet drapes, scatter cushions, cup holders, carpet and golden handrails.  There was an old-fashioned popcorn maker (assembled by yours truly in a speedy amount of time), fizzy drinks (in walkman branded cups) and a sweet dispenser.  

Product Demo

The X-series was available for people to try out.  Not overly intuitive (IMHO) but smart looking nonetheless and the screen really did look good.

The biggest obstacle for me was remembering that it’s not actually a mobile (whilst simultaneously hiding my own iPhone for fear of causing offense!)

Popular?

London commuters are definitely avid users of portable video players.  We seem to like nothing more than isolating ourself from fellow passengers on the long ride home from work and if the noise-canceling technology does what it says then that would be a most welcome addition to the longer life/sharper screens.  The Victoria line has been measured as louder than a pneumatic drill – 118 decibels and at times i know i struggle to hear my music (despite it being at full volume).

Techditional

I’m intrigued by the idea of linking an old-fashioned cinema style to a cutting edge piece of technology – it’s almost as if as consumers we need something familiar/traditional/safe in order for us to feel secure with the latest technological developments.  By grounding the X-Series with nostalgia and the collective experience of cinema, Sony are softening the rather solitary activity of engaging only with the screen.

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