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Sony Gives Details on Prototype Camera & GPS Memory Sticks

Sony has released new pictures and details of prototype digital camera and GPS Memory Stick peripherals. The descriptions are in Japanese but some facts can be gleaned. Details are still sketchy, though. It is known that these are working prototypes, not just non-functional mockups.

Sony has not yet disclosed what these will cost though it says they will be available within a year.

Update: Note: Not all the information in this article turned out to be correct. Sony released the GPS module in Japan in November. The digital camera is available now in the U.S.

Unfortunately for S series owners, these devices appear to work only with the N series. Sony doesn't give any reason for this but lists only the N series models as being compatible.

The PEGA-MSC1 is the digital camera module. It has a 100 thousand pixel CMOS image sensor and a rotating lens. Images can be viewed with Picture Gear Pocket and stored in its own memory. How much storage space the MSC1 has wasn't mentioned.

The PEGA-MSG1 is the GPS module. In order to reduce the size of this device, it has a folding antennae.

As usual, the translations from Japanese are a bit garbled but it appears that these will require the Clié to be running OS 4.1. Fortunately for N710C users, Sony finally appears to be close to releasing an OS upgrade.

Sony has shown prototypes of camera and GPS Memory Stick peripherals before but they haven't looked like these. They have also said they have a Bluetooth Memory Stick in development.

Thanks to nXt for the tip. I got this information as best I could with the help of Babelfish. If any of it is incorrect, please let me know. -Ed

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Memory Stick Slot

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 7:39:20 AM #
Since it uses the memory stick slot, I hope there is still a way to use the memory stick memory card to access files when the camera/gps is attached. If I'm using the camera I would like pictures to be stored directly on a memory stick. For a GPS, I would like to access map files from the memory stick too.

RE: Memory Stick Slot
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 8:40:58 AM #
Maybe they'll be using Memory Stick Duo technology... which is basically a smaller memory stick within a memory stick.

RE: Memory Stick Slot
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 9:02:06 AM #
i suppose. memory stick duo is the smaller memory stick right (about half the size)? this means i have to buy another ms (duo) even if i already have a 128mb ms? grr.

RE: Memory Stick Slot
BThomas @ 9/12/2001 10:22:07 AM #
Issues like this is why Handera has 2 slots!

------------
Brad Thomas
BThomas76@yahoo.com
RE: Memory Stick Slot
Ed @ 9/13/2001 3:11:30 PM #
As the article says, the camera has its own built-in memory so it acts both as an I/O device and storage. It is possible that the GPS one also has some storage capacity so it could hold maps, too, though Sony didn't say anything about this. Keep in mind, details are still sketchy.

---
News Editor
RE: Memory Stick Slot
I.M. Anonymous @ 1/9/2002 10:37:54 AM #
does anyone have any idea when or if these will be released to the US? Also, does anyone currently use their Clie as a GPS? If so, what are you using and how do you like it?

interesting

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 9:06:31 AM #
I thought I once heard that MS could only be used for memory. That the architecture of the actual MS couldn't be used for more the I/O. Is this only for the new MS/SanDisk stuff talked about last week or will these work on any Sony PDA?

RE: interesting
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 9:11:00 AM #
This is for all Sony Clies. When the 710 came out, prototypes of the camera, the gps module, and bluetooth were already on the works.

RTA
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 10:08:46 AM #
Did you read the article?
Unfortunately for S series owners, these devices appear to work only with the N series. Sony doesn't give any reason for this but lists only the N series models as being compatible.


RE: interesting
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 10:52:26 AM #
maybe its because of color and the high resolution.

RE: interesting
I.M. Anonymous @ 1/9/2002 12:15:12 PM #
We have a winner!

Resolution

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 9:56:51 AM #
Hey Ed,
what's up with the resolution 100K pixels isn't so much . The PalmPix has 800x600=480K pixels, or am I wrong?

WAB66

RE: Resolution
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 11:08:52 AM #
Eyemodule1: 320x240 = 76K pixels
Sony MS Camera: 100K pixels
Eyemodule2: 640x480 = 307K pixels
Kodak PalmPix: 800x600=480K pixels

RE: Resolution
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 11:53:16 AM #
It seems to support 320x320 though.

RE: Resolution
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 2:44:35 PM #
A little multiplication shows that a 320 x 320 picture has 102,400 pixels so the camera can just about do it.

Break'n

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 12:49:13 PM #
Do these products have titainium cases? How do they expect people to use the clunky GPS without busting the antenna of the GPS off of the frail "memory stick" adapter?

RE: Break'n
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 4:47:02 PM #
i'm sure someone in sony has brought up your concern already.

RE: Break'n
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 6:45:35 PM #
Have you held this item or do you assume (ass---u---me) that it is made of cheap plastic. It is probably metal or a very hard plastic.

RE: Break'n
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 7:22:16 PM #
durability is what sony japan is known for.

RE: Break'n
tiger_bb @ 9/12/2001 11:23:09 PM #
in my opinion, sony's GPS memory stick + CLIE is for drivers.... you can put your CLIE next to the driving seat.... it's very common in Japan to have GPS in cars...

i don't think the GPS and CLIE is suitable for explorers....

Sixteenth pr057

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/12/2001 7:22:49 PM #
idiot censoring. you heard of freedom of speech?b you must be a a***hanistan or whatever. didn't even post about WTC bombing. ***got.

Here are pictures of the Modules On the Clie

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/13/2001 2:43:12 AM #
Here's the original Story i referred Ed to. It shows more pictures of the modules, and the modules inserted into the Clie 750.

http://www.zdnet.co.jp/mobile/palm/news/0109/11/0000000000000235.html

RE: Here are pictures of the Modules On the Clie
Ed @ 9/13/2001 8:32:10 AM #
There's a link to that ZDnet story at the end of the article and if you click on the product names in the PIC article, you can see these pictures.

---
News Editor
I must say...
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/13/2001 1:59:09 PM #
they look even worse on the units than I thought they would.

RE: Here are pictures of the Modules On the Clie
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/13/2001 6:29:04 PM #
No, actually they don't look too bad. The GPS MS is very compact (for a GPS receiver), sure it doesn't blend with the Clié itself, but keep in mind that these are prototypes. The camera MS looks pretty sleek in the device, reminds me of the prototype renditions of the original S300 (it had a built-in picturebook-style camera at the top in the sketches). But with the apparent resolution of this camera, its just an interesting toy. Sony's cheapest Memstick-based digital camera is $250, and this camera will probably be well over $100.

RE: I'm not dead yet!
sandbuck @ 4/4/2002 1:41:45 PM #
"Its just a flesh wound!"

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