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Sony Announces $599 BDP-S300 Blu-ray Player

With cost as one of the biggest criticisms of the format, Sony has announced that they will launch a $599 Blu-ray disc player this summer, according to the AP (via USA Today).

The BDP-S300 will cost $599, yet will have the same capabilities as the $999 BDP-S1 Sony is currently selling, said Randy Waynick, senior vice president of the home products division of Sony Electronics. ...

The BDP-S300 is a smaller unit than the BDP-S1, and is about the same size as a DVD player. Like the current model, it will be able to output a signal in the highest high-definition format, known as 1080p. It will also be able to play CDs, which the BDP-S1 does not.

The BDP-S300 will be the cheapest stand-alone Blu-ray player, save for Sony's low-end PlayStation 3, which costs $499. At CES, Toshiba announced a $599 HD DVD player, the HD-A20, at that point, the cheapest stand-alone high-definition DVD player (again, save for Sony's low-end PS3).

At CES, Sony showed two Blu-ray prototypes, the Sapphire 1 and Sapphire 2.

For more on Sony's new Blu-ray player, check out