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Sony MEA Showcases its New Product Line Up for 2023



Sony Middle East and Africa (MEA) recorded tremendous growth in FY2022, with an overall growth of 14 percent across key product categories in the UAE. While sales of Sony’s premium soundbars saw the greatest growth of 120 percent in MEA, growth was robust across other product categories as well, in the region: digital imaging products grew by 37 percent, mobile audio grew by 26 percent, and OLED and Mini LED TVs by 11 percent.

For 2023, Sony MEA is eyeing steady growth in its overall business in the region and further increasing its market share. To achieve this vision, the consumer electronics giant plans on increasing collaboration between stakeholders and consumers by enhancing our shopping experience by introducing Sonyworld, an exciting e-commerce platform with exclusive benefits.

Sony MEA remains focused on maintaining market leadership through new and innovative products across key focus categories such as television, digital imaging, and audio products.

Deputy Managing Director Jobin Joejoe, who is driving the company’s regional business strategy, said: “Sony’s purpose is to fill the world with emotion, through the power of creativity and technology. We are listening to our customers to unleash our creativity and create exceptional experiences for our community. Our business strategy will help us better serve our customer needs and provide a premium entertainment experience.”

The Middle East & Africa region is one of the fastest growth areas for Sony’s large-screen TVs, particularly in the 75” and 85” screen segment, with the largest market share in the GCC. Jobin added, “When it comes to purchasing behavior, there has been a perceptible increase in online sales of TVs, catalyzed by the mass shift to e-commerce. As many as 20 percent of Sony TVs sold in the region are now bought online, as compared to 10 percent pre-pandemic. However, physical retail stores continue to be the most popular choice as consumers want to experience and evaluate the features before purchasing.”

Meanwhile, in the mobile audio category, Sony MEA registered a steady growth across truly wireless, headband Bluetooth, and gaming headsets. This growth was fueled by Gen Z’s love for trendy wearables, the surge in digital content consumption such as music, gaming, and social media posts, and increased travel in the post-pandemic era that boosted demand for noise-cancelling headphones.

In the digital camera business, Sony continues to lead the full-frame segment with the continuous shift of DSLR users to mirrorless cameras. The company saw massive growth with a 60% market share in the full frame mirrorless segment in UAE, as well as an expansion of a large community of content creators thanks to Alpha Universe.

In FY2023, Sony MEA will feature 23 new models including the enhanced BRAVIA XR TVs powered by Cognitive processor XR with 13 new XR models. Following the successful launch of its INZONE PC headsets, Sony will also release the INZONE gaming monitor M9, coming with 4K resolution and Full Array display. INZONE gaming monitor would bring a new level of gaming experience to gamers in GCC.

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Audio Devices

Sonos Launches Era 300 and Era 100



Sonos has debuted Sonos Era 300 and Sonos Era 100, the company’s new smart speakers. Era 300 comes packed with support for Dolby Atmos, while Era 100 is based on the Sonos One. The Era family powers new levels of immersive listening with expanded connectivity and Trueplay technology. Era 300 and Era 100 are also the first speakers built to Sonos’ new responsible design standards, which span long-term serviceability, energy-efficient technologies, and the use of post-consumer recycled (PCR) materials. Both Era 300 (AED 2,099) and Era 100 (AED 1,149) will be available globally on March 28, 2023.

“In an age of constant background noise, quality listening matters more than ever. Our vision is to make listening to an experience that is charged with feeling, and help our customers feel joy and vitality through their favorite music and audio content,” said Patrick Spence, CEO of Sonos. “The Era family is the next generation of smart speakers, epitomizing our commitment to sound innovation, responsible design, and a deep connection to the creator community.”

Era 300
Unprecedented for a single compact speaker, Era 300 boasts six powerful drivers that direct sound left, right, forward, and upward, delivering a breakthrough audio performance featuring Dolby Atmos that places listeners at the very heart of their movies and music.

“Dolby Atmos created a new way for music and audio entertainment to be experienced. Sounds and music come alive with unparalleled clarity and depth,” said Kevin J. Yeaman, CEO of Dolby. “Era 300’s sound innovation with Dolby Atmos creates a completely immersive music experience.”

Era 300 wraps its beautifully complex acoustic architecture in an elegantly cinched hourglass design, with every angle, proportion, and perforation enhancing the direction and dispersion of sound to truly surround you. Era 300 is the brand’s first speaker that delivers multi-channel surround sound when used as a home theater rear. Movie fans can pair two speakers with Arc or Beam (Gen 2) to create a supercharged Dolby Atmos experience that draws them deeper into the action.

Sonos worked closely with its community of leading artists and creators – including Sonos Soundboard members – to meticulously fine-tune Era 300 so listeners can enjoy sounding straight from the studio that’s true to the artist’s intent. “Just like the shift from mono to stereo, spatial audio is the next evolution in listening – creating a sound experience that wraps you in music,” said Giles Martin, VP of Sound Experience at Sonos. “As both creators and major streaming platforms embrace spatial audio for music, the time is right to create an out loud listening experience that delivers against the promise of this thrilling and creative format.”

Sonos Era 300 will be available globally on March 28, 2023, for AED 2,099.

Era 100
Only slightly larger than its predecessor Sonos One, Era 100 features all-new hardware and software, with next-gen acoustics and design that deliver detailed stereo sound and deep bass. Two angled tweeters send crisp high frequencies left and right for a rich stereo experience, while a larger mid-woofer creates stunning bass that’s unexpected from a single compact speaker.

Packed full of audio and tech enhancements, Era 100’s slim, modern design makes it a chic accent piece for any bookshelf, kitchen counter, desk, or nightstand. Level-up movie night by adding two Era 100 speakers as rears with your soundbar to create a surround sound system, or simply pair two together for room-filling stereo sound.

Sonos Era 100 will be available globally on March 28, 2023, for AED 1,149.

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Sony Launches the WH-CH720N Over-Ear and WH-CH520 On-Ear Wireless Headphones



Sony has announced two new headphones – the WH-CH720N and the WH-CH520 – giving music lovers the option of on-ear or over-ear wireless headphones packed with Sony’s critically acclaimed audio technology. The over-ear WH-CH720N wireless headphones incorpoarate Dual Noise Sensor technology and Sony’s Integrated Processor V1 chip to provide noise cancelling. In addition, a lightweight design and up to 35 hours[ When connecting via Bluetooth, battery life is up to 35 hours for music playback usage when DSEE is turned off and codec is AAC, up to 35 hours for communication time usage.

The on-ear WH-CH520 wireless headphones provide up to 50 hours of battery life with all-day comfort and enhanced call performance to meet the demands of your day. Plus choose from four colours – black, blue, white and beige – to match your style. Both models also feature Digital Sound Enhancement Engine (DSEE) to produce high-quality sound exactly as the artist intended as well as a Multipoint connection for easy connectivity between devices.

The over-ear WH-CH720N headphones deliver Sony’s advanced noise cancelling performance thanks to the Integrated Processor V1 chip and Dual Noise Sensor technology, so you can enjoy more music and less background noise. The Integrated Processor V1 helps eliminate external sound, with a low processing delay to make the noise cancelling more effective than ever. The WH-CH720N also features two microphones in each earcup which, coupled with Dual Noise Sensor technology, captures ambient sound. This lets you block outside noise everywhere you go, so the only thing you hear is your music.

The over-ear headphones are ergonomically designed to be comfortable for even longer periods. At just 192g, the WH-CH720N are Sony’s lightest overhead wireless headphones with noise cancelling. Comfortable synthetic leather and urethane materials combine with optimum ear pad structure and dimensions for exceptional wearability. With up to 35 hours of battery life with noise cancelling on, you’ll have enough power to keep listening all day and into the night.

The WH-CH520 have also been carefully designed with everyday use in mind. You can stay powered up for days with up to 50 hours of battery life. So you can listen to your favourite music without worrying about running out of charge. Plus the on-ear headphones feature an adjustable headband with padding, soft earpads and a lightweight design so you can find the perfect fit and stay comfortable for longer.

Enjoy natural vocals, crystal clear sound and balanced tuning on both the WH-CH720N and WH-CH520 Digital Sound Enhancement Engine (DSEE), producing a high-quality sound exactly as the artist intended. When the original music is compressed, it loses the high-frequency elements that add details and richness to a track. Sony’s Digital Sound Enhancement Engine faithfully restores these to produce high-quality sound that’s closer to the original recording.

The Integrated Processor V1 included within the WH-CH720N also produces an authentic listening experience by reproducing the detail in your music with minimal distortion. The sound tuning is intentionally designed to be well-balanced from low to high frequencies with natural and clear vocals. Whether you’re listening to electrifying pop or bassy rap, the WH-CH720N and WH-CH520 allow you to tailor your sound using the Equaliser in the Sony | Headphones Connect app. You can choose from a variety of settings to match sound quality with the music genre you’re listening to or even create and save your own settings.

Improved technology features on the WH-CH720N mean you can enjoy even better call quality. Beamforming microphones with Precise Voice Pickup technology are smartly positioned to pick up your voice more clearly and accurately in a range of environments. A newly developed Wind Noise Reduction Structure around the microphones reduce background noise for you, keeping conversations and music clear and uninterrupted.

The WH-CH520 also provides easy hands-free calling and great call quality. Simply answer calls with one click of the buttons on the earcup so there’s no need to take your phone out of your pocket. Built-in high-quality microphones and noise suppression processing mean the WH-CH520 collects sound and reduces ambient noise during calls so you can make clear calls even in noisy environments.

Both the WH-CH720N and WH-CH520 feature a Multipoint connection, easy button operation and can be controlled with your voice. Since the connection is easy with Swift Pair and Fast pair, these headphones are ideal for everyday use.

Sony has designed these headphones with the environment in mind. There’s no plastic in the WH-CH720N and WH-CH520 packaging, which is designed based on low toxicity design principles and towards Sony’s “Road to Zero” environmental plan. Both headphones also use recycled plastic materials. The WH-CH720N and WH-CH520 will be available in the Middle East and Africa in March 2023.

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Review: Sony LinkBuds S



Sony launched the original LinkBuds wireless earbuds in March 2022 with a unique ring driver design, and the company quickly followed up with the launch of the new LinkBuds S. Unlike the LinkBuds, which focus on allowing ambient sound in, the S model is designed to block out ambient noise with an in-ear fit and active noise cancelling (ANC) system.

These earbuds are also similar in appearance to the Sony WF-1000XM4 but are made of recycled plastic, making them lightweight and comfortable to wear. In terms of sound profile, Sony has moved away from a heavy bass, boomy sound, and towards a more balanced audio experience. Inside the box, you get the Sony LinkBuds S earbuds, four tip sizes, a charging case, the USB-C to USB-A charging cable, and user manuals.

The Sony LinkBuds S come in three colour variants such as Black, White, and Ecru. We tested the Black variant for this review. The design of the LinkBuds S is familiar and easy to use. The earbuds come with four different sizes of ear tips, and their ergonomic shape fits comfortably in my ear.

The sealed fit of the earbuds means that you won’t be able to hear your surroundings as well as the original LinkBuds, but it also means that you can hear the bass in your music more clearly. Additionally, the sealed fit can also help to protect your hearing by reducing the need to crank up the volume during loud environmental noise.

One aspect that carries over from the original LinkBuds WF-L900 is the matte textured plastic of the LinkBuds S and its charging case. On one hand, the texture feels nice, and it’s hard to imagine them ever slipping out of your hand. However, they are also quick to attract dust which actually isn’t a biggie if you are used to regularly cleaning your earbuds.

The LinkBuds S are also IPX4 water-resistant, making them suitable for workouts and commutes. In addition to active noise-cancellation, they also feature an ambient sound or transparency mode that allows you to hear more of your surroundings.

The Sony Headphones Connect app offers 20 levels of adjustment for this feature, providing a significant amount of flexibility. The earbuds come equipped with the same Integrated Processor V1 and DSEE Extreme processor found in the LinkBuds and the WF-1000XM4, allowing it to upscale digital music files to near-high-resolution quality.

The LinkBuds S is easy to control – all the functions can be controlled by tapping on the flat exterior of the earbuds. The controls include toggling between active noise cancelling (ANC) and transparency mode, activating your virtual assistant, controlling volume, and controlling playback.

There is also an awareness mode, which you can activate by holding the side of an earbud for a quick hit of transparency mode, similar to other Sony audio products like the WH-1000XM5. You can customise the control profile of each earbud in the Sony Headphones Connect app, but you cannot set individual controls – you can’t set the left earbud to control playback and the right earbud to control volume, for instance.

The LinkBuds S features Bluetooth 5.2 connectivity and support for LE Audio, in addition to Sony’s high-resolution LDAC codec, SBC and AAC. They also have the ability to connect to two devices simultaneously, thanks to a firmware update that allows for Bluetooth multipoint connectivity.

Sony claims that the LinkBuds S can last up to 6 hours on a single charge, and in testing, we found the earbuds to come close to that claim. With a constant output of real music peaking at 75dB (SPL), the Sony LinkBuds S lasted for 5 hours and 41 minutes on a single charge, which is pretty good. The charging case also provides an additional 14 hours of charge, bringing the total to nearly 20 hours.

The Sony LinkBuds S have outstanding consistency in their frequency response. When you get a good fit and seal, you will experience consistent bass and treble delivery with every use. They also have excellent mid-range accuracy. Their frequency range is fairly neutral, which makes vocals and lead instruments sound clear and detailed.

Additionally, the peaks and dips in the frequency response of the Sony LinkBuds S are excellent. In terms of noise isolation, the LinkBuds S perform excellently as well.

Sony is already well-established in the world of in-ear earbuds, with its WF-1000XM4 being a highly sought-after pair of truly wireless earbuds. The noise cancellation and audio quality on the WF-1000XM4 are superior to the LinkBuds S, making them the top choice if you’re considering Sony earbuds.

However, the Sony LinkBuds S still offer many of the same features at a lower price point, and their more lightweight and compact design may appeal to those who find the XM4 to be too bulky. At their current price of AED 450, they are a solid investment and a marked improvement over the original LinkBuds.

Price: AED 450

Sony LinkBuds S AED 450
  • Final Rating


The LinkBuds S is easy to control – all the functions can be controlled by tapping on the flat exterior of the earbuds. The controls include toggling between active noise cancelling (ANC) and transparency mode, activating your virtual assistant, controlling volume, and controlling playback.

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