[access-uk] Audio description as standard on Sony TVs

  • From: "Ray's Home" <rays-home@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "VI-Genaccess@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx" <vi-genaccess@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, "Access-Uk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <access-uk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 21 Aug 2007 13:50:47 +0100

I hope others feel this has a place on both Access-UK and Vi-gen,
hence the cross posting.  (There was a mention of a very cheap, or
even free, Freeview Box to include A-D, but I've not heard more on
that as yet.)

This is taken from the E-Access Bulliten for August .

 site address http://www.headstar.com/

Audio Description Included As Standard For Sony TVs.

 Sony has begun shipping its Bravia range of integrated digital TVs
 with audio description included as a standard function. The first of
 new Bravia models were launched in June, and the company aims to
 equip the entire Bravia range with audio description by the end of
 September 2007.

 Earlier this year rival TV manufacturer Panasonic made a similar
 move, enabling consumers to access audio described broadcast content
 without buying extra equipment such as a set-top box. At present, the
 audio description facilities provided by both Sony and Panasonic are
 restricted to programme content only, and so do not include an
 accessible electronic programme guide.

 The move was welcomed by the RNIB. However, Jill Whitehead,
 RNIB Media and Culture Information Officer said that Sony could
 improve the accessibility of its remote control handset. "The
 remote control is much better," she told E-Access Bulletin. Unlike
 Sony, the Panasonic system enables users to isolate the audio
 description stream, listening to it privately through headphones,
 may be a bonus for households with sighted and vision impaired

 Although Sony's move is a welcome development, Whitehead was
 cautious about the impact on other manufacturers. "Audio description
 is still not seen as a desirable feature for the mass market. The
 manufacturers think of it as serving a minority audience," she said.
 RNIB has produced a downloadable guide to audio description that
 includes more details about the new Sony and Panasonic models:
 http://fastlink.headstar.com/rnibdigtv .

From Ray
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