Sony shows off unique Rolly audio entertainment player

Rolly, a unique new audio entertainment player from Sony is capable of twisting and turning while playing music and will go on sale in Japan on Sept. 29

Now you don't have to dance to your favorite tunes -- your audio player can dance for you.

Rolly, a unique new "audio entertainment player" from Sony, is capable of twisting and turning while playing music. The player, which Sony has been teasing for the last couple of weeks, is egg-shaped and can fit into a hand.

It has speakers on each end that are normally hidden by dish-like covers, but the covers move to reveal the speakers and reflect their sound when the Rolly is switched on.

There's just one button on the player -- an on/off switch -- with the other functions being controlled by a pair of rings that circle its body.

One ring is used to move from track to track or album to album while the other controls the volume. The same two rings are connected to motors that enable the Rolly to scoot around a table-top in time to the music being played. Alternatively it can be set to sit motionless. In that case it's possible to control the Rolly by moving it back and forth to switch tracks, or in a circular motion to increase or decrease the volume.

Rolly has 1G byte of flash memory built-in and can playback MP3, Atrac or AAC songs (AAC songs with copy protection from iTunes Music Store aren't supported). In addition to playing back music from its internal memory the Rolly can also receive music streamed via a Bluetooth connection.

Sony demonstrated the device running with its "Sonic Stage" software but Rolly will accept streams from other software and devices capable of Bluetooth streaming, the company said.

Rolly's movements need to be preprogrammed into the device for each track. There are six that are possible. The dish-like speaker covers can flap in and out, the ends of the device to which the speaker covers are attached can twist around and the wheels can turn. With just these six motions is possible to program a surprisingly complicated sequence of moves.

Sony will supply a software application called "Motion Editor" for move-by-move choreography or a rough set of moves can be automatically generated. The latter won't necessarily match in detail the music being played but it's a much quicker way of setting the Rolly in motion that programming by hand.

Sony also plans to launch an online community where the company and users can share movement files.

Users should get about five hours of audio playback from Rolly. This drops to four hours when the device is in motion and three and a half hours when Bluetooth streaming is also enabled.

The Rolly isn't an iPod-killer nor is it meant to be. At a relatively heavy 300 grams and measuring 104 millimeters long and 65 millimeters in circumference the player is not very practical for those wanting a portable audio player. But it is certainly unique and likely to be a talking point whenever people see it.

It will go on sale in Japan on Sept. 29 and cost about YEN 40,000 (AU$425). Sony has yet to decide plans for an international launch.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?