Sony to Offer Less Costly Standalone Blu-ray Player

Sony said this week it's planning to issue a less expensive Blu-ray Disc player in a few months, and also plans to step up its promotion of the firm's Bravia line of flatscreen HD units.

At a press briefing this week, Sony told reporters it expects its current $1,000 Blu-ray player to drop to about $600 with the new model, the BDP-S300. Still, that's several times the price of a lot of brand-name progressive scan standard disc players now on the market, and at least $100 more than today's HD DVD players produced by Toshiba and others.

Sony reportedly sold about 1.8 million PlayStation 3 units last year, which come with internal Blu-ray drives. The company said this week the vast majority of PS3 owners also purchase Blu-ray discs, according to the Associated Press.