Walkman series of media players has done its best to keep stride, stuffing in new features and design refinements over the years, but touchscreen-dominated players are clearly in vogue, and it looks like the company is finally ready to break down and get touchable. According to the Sony stalkers over at Sony Insider, there will be 16 and 32GB touchscreen Walkman players at CES 2009 this coming January. The literal and figurative centerpiece is to be a 3-inch OLED display (possibly that 3.3-inch panel making the rounds, or something more Sony specific), running a touch interface with many similarities to the current Walkman players. Also slated for inclusion is WiFi, enabling a YouTube app, over the air podcast downloads, built-in access to Amazon's MP3 store and an unspecified web browser. The shots of the player above are obviously mockups, and the real hardware is supposed to have physical music control buttons -- and hopefully hold to some sort of reality-based conception of scale. All this info is exclusive to the Sony Insider ninjas, so we can't vouch for its veracity, but it's an obvious and welcome move from Sony, so we won't look a gift rumor in the mouth. Read
Josh's Verdict: Looks like the iPod touch isn't so alone anymore.
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