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September 16, 2011

Sony and Tokyu Recreation Conclude “Digital Cinema Solution Service” Agreement

-Sony provides new solutions to redefine the excitement of the movie theater-

Sony Corporation (Sony) and Tokyu Recreation Co., Ltd. (Tokyu Recreation) the operator of cinema chain “109 Cinemas” concluded an agreement based on Sony's “Digital Cinema Solution Service” for supporting movie theater digitalization. This agreement, will enable all 147 screens at “109 Cinemas” 17 sites to be digitalized via Sony's service.

Sony's 4K digital cinema was first adopted by 109 Tomiya (Tomiya-cho, Kurokawa-gun, Miyagi) (a theater with 10 screens) which was temporarily closed due to the Great East Japan Earthquake but reopened on September 14, 2011. The second project will target 109 Shonan (Fujisawa-shi, Kanagawa-ken) (a theater with 9 screens) located inside the large-scale shopping and entertainment complex “Terrace Mall Shonan.” With the completion of these projects, by June 2013 all of the above-mentioned screens will be running on Sony's 4K system.

In carrying out the 109 Shonan Project, Sony and Tokyu Recreation also agreed they would redefine the theater as a new venue for offering moviegoers a wide variety of media and generating new value-added business. For example, by installing large numbers of display panels supporting large-screen LED displays, digital signage (including AR (Augmented Reality) compatible systems) and FeliCa Touch coupons, the two parties will be able to explore and develop effective means for combining these panels with in-auditorium cinema advertisements.

Image of the lobby proposed for 109 Shonan. Includes large-screen LED, Digital Signage and FeliCa To Image of the lobby proposed for 109 Shonan. Includes large-screen LED, Digital Signage and FeliCa Touch system

Sony's “Digital Cinema Solution System” has been adopted by 10 movie theater management companies and deployed at 82 sites in Japan across 682 screens (as of August 8).

Sony also has agreements with more than 50 film production companies and distributors worldwide and has remained the leader in digitalizing Japanese movie theaters.

The “4K digital cinema system” consists of an ultra-high resolution digital cinema projector that offers a four-fold increase in resolution over Full HD (8.85 megapixels) and a media block (projection server). Sony's system complies with DCI specifications and is accepted worldwide as a de facto standard for high quality 4K digital cinema.

By offering movie theaters a network-connected projection system and by controlling projection from a single point via Sony's Theater Management System (TMS), Sony is contributing to theater operating efficiency in a major way---empowering theaters to do away with conventional human-operated, 35mm projection system models and shift to fully-digitalized, fully-automated projection. Sony also provides maintenance services (call center, remote monitoring systems, periodical maintenance, etc.) that theaters can rely on.

Sony has also provided Tokyu Recreation with Sony's unique dual lens 3D system. At high speeds, this system does not need to shift between L/R, and instead projects for both eyes simultaneously. Therefore, this 3D system is much easier on the eyes, uses lightweight glasses and offers a comfortable environment for viewing 3D content.

Sony will continue to promote the digitalization of theaters worldwide by offering its digital solution service to production companies, distributors and movie theater management companies in Japan as well as overseas.

Additionally, Sony will seek new ways to redefine the excitement of the movie theater and continue to proactively offer a wide array of solutions to transform the theater into an increasingly attractive entertainment venue across multiple consumer segments and, at the same time, strengthen the company's Professional Solutions Business.

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