15th Kids Design Awards: Special TEPIA Award

Let's play with music Picotons™

Sony Interactive Entertainment Inc. has won the Special TEPIA Award at the 15th Kids Design Awards for Let's play with music Picotons™, a title specifically designed for the toio robot toy. The Kids Design Awards recognize outstanding products, services, venues, activities, and research that aim to resolve social issues concerning children and child-raising.
Simply touching and sliding the toio™ Core Cube robot toys on the mat or playbook provided enables children to play music intuitively and learn a wide range of music while playing games with characters. Intuitive controls allow users to create sounds according to their proficiency levels and share their creations online. This application of technology to provide creative experiences for all has been recognized as sustainable, scalable, and innovative.

The Game Awards (TGA) 2020 "Innovation in Accessibility Award" Winner

The Last of Us Part II

The Last of Us Part II has won various awards including "Game of the Year" at The Game Awards (TGA), one of the world's top gaming prizes. Among them, the "Innovation in Accessibility Award" was established in 2020. This award was established to honor games that make maximum use of functions, technology, and content to enhance enjoyment for a wider range of users.
The Last of Us Part II has more than 60 different accessibility settings to enable a wider range of players to enjoy the game. The accessibility functions of the earlier Uncharted 4: A Thief's End have been enhanced to feature greatly expanded audio and more refined mobility options. Various visual settings can be adjusted to suit the user's disability level. Our success in winning the inaugural Innovation in Accessibility Award is the result of our pursuit of the best possible gaming experiences for each and every player.

The Last of Us Part II accessibility: Custom control settings

IAUD International Design Award 2020

The International Association for Universal Design (IAUD) presents the IAUD International Design Awards for universal design (UD) excellence. The awards recognize organizations and individuals who have "conducted or proposed particularly noteworthy activities aimed at realizing a UD society."

In the Product Design category, Sony also Received a Bronze Award for the SRS-LSR200 Wireless Handy TV Speaker

The SRS-LSR200 Wireless Handy TV Speaker is equipped with a remote control function that makes TV audio easier to hear close by, away from the TV. Following SRS-LSR100's winning in 2019, SRS-200 won the bronze award in the Product Design category in 2020. These speakers automatically adjust volume according to ambient sounds to help the viewer hear audio better and make dialog crisper and clearer. The large volume control with integrated power button is also simple for anyone to use. This award recognized these points.

Best Video Presentation Award of 2020 Winter HCD Research Meeting

Toy Platform toio™

Sony Interactive Entertainment has won Best Video Presentation Award for "The Importance of Inclusive Design in New Business: The Case of Robot Toy Platform toio" at the 2020 Winter HCD Research Meeting hosted online by the Human Centered Design Organization (HCD-Net).

HCD Research Presentations have been held since 2009 as a forum for presenting research and case studies on human-centered design (HCD) and usability.

The toio presentation introduced cases where user feedback was repeatedly reflected in the product from the planning and design stages onwards. As an example, one of the users who had used the product said, "I couldn't play with it because I couldn't distinguish the colors." To remedy the situation, we used colors and lettering to enable anyone to differentiate one box from another quickly and accurately.

The product received high praise for its excellent content and potential for future progress in research because of its consistent approach to inclusive design issues from the initial product development stage onwards.


Sony Life Insurance wins Excellence Award in the Accessibility Award category at the 8th Web Grand Prix

Sony Life Insurance Co., Ltd. Official Website

Sony Life Insurance Co., Ltd. has won the Excellence Award in the Accessibility Award category, Corporate Grand Prix Category at the 8th Web Grand Prix, organized by the Japan Advertisers Association Inc. and the Web Advertising Bureau. Sony Life Insurance Co., Ltd.'s official website uses high contrast to help customers read the information, and user flows that can be navigated without a mouse. The website was praised for making it easier for more customers to reach and use the information it offers.
Sony Life Insurance Co., Ltd. is proactively working to improve the accessibility of its website and other points of contact with customers. The aim is to create a convenient website that provides engaging content for all users, including those with disabilities, those who are temporarily unable to perform normal operations due to illness or injury, and the elderly.

IAUD International Design Award 2019

In the Interaction Design category, Sony's Cave without a LIGHT Receives a Silver Award 

CAVE without a LIGHT is an experiential exhibit that uses sound and tactile technology to enable visitors to enjoy themselves without relying on vision. Sony Group employees with and without visual impairments used an Inclusive Design approach to create an exhibit that transcends disabilities, gender, and differences in culture and language. This award acknowledged these initiatives.

In the Product Design category, Sony also Received a Bronze Award for the SRS-LSR100 Wireless Handy TV Speaker

The SRS-LSR100 Wireless Handy TV Speaker is equipped with a remote control function that makes TV audio easier to hear close by, away from the TV. These speakers automatically adjust volume according to ambient sounds to help the viewer hear audio better and make dialog crisper and clearer. The large volume control with integrated power button is also simple for anyone to use. This award recognized these points.

Excellence Prize of HCD-Net AWARD 2019

Sony Corporation received the Excellence Prize of HCD-Net AWARD 2019 for its CAVE without a LIGHT experiential entertainment, a display of Inclusive Design practices and processes.
The Human-Centered Design Organization (HCD-Net) sponsors the HCD-Net AWARD to commend excellence in knowledge and know how in the area of Human Centered Design. CAVE without a LIGHT was recognized as an excellent example of Inclusive Design that enables visitors to experience the sensations felt by people with disabilities by involving the latter in creating an inspired entertainment. It was also praised for its ongoing cross-organizational efforts in the area of Inclusive Design.

CAVE without a LIGHT

FY2018 National Invention Awards, Asahi Shimbun Award


As part of the FY2018 National Invention Awards sponsored by the Japan Institute of Invention and Innovation (JIII), Sony Corporation has been awarded the Asahi Shimbun Award for inventing a wireless device connection method that is operated by touch.

The award commends this invention for its contribution to the spread and development of accessible products through the achievement of universal designs that reduce the burden on users by means of a wireless device connection method that uses touch operation.

The invention combines NFC (Near Field Communication) and other short-range wireless communications methods with WiFi and other high-bandwidth wireless communications methods. Simply touching together the devices that the user wants to connect initiates NFC communications, allowing WiFi and other methods to take over the actual connections. This simple operation thus launches wireless communications between devices without requiring the user to be aware of setting up complicated wireless connections.

The invention also adopts the NFC Forum's Connection handover protocol as its international standard, and is installed in many products as an intuitive inter-device connection technology. In this way, it contributes to the spread and development of products that embody universal designs that are easy and intuitive for anyone to use.

  • *The National Invention Awards were inaugurated in 1919 to contribute to enhancing Japan's science and technology, and industrial development.
    The Awards come with a gift from the Imperial Family, and commend inventions and creations that have already made considerable contributions, or whose excellence encourages great expectations for future achievements.
    National Invention Awards (in Japanese only)
  • Recipients of Asahi Shimbun award
    Junichi Rekimoto, Sony Computer Science Laboratories, Inc.
    Haruo Oba, ex-Sony corporation
    Yuji Ayatsuka, Nobuyuki Matsushita, Eduardo Agusto Sciammarella, ex-Sony Computer Science Laboratories, Inc.
  • Recipients of Invention implementation achievements award
    Kenichiro Yoshida President and CEO, Sony corporation
  • *When an obligee of a patent is a corporation, a representative of a corporation wins this award.

Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) 2016 Innovation Award

Entertainment Access Glasses

Sony Corporation's Entertainment Access Glasses (STW-C140GI) received an Innovation Award *2 from the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) *1.

The HLAA awards committee selected the Entertainment Access Glasses, which project holographic captions onto glasses, for giving hearing-impaired individuals more opportunities to enjoy movies on the big screen.
"Sony has demonstrated a significant achievement, resulting in people with hearing loss being able to enjoy a movie with friends and family, children and grandchildren at any time, for any showing," an HLAA representative explained during the awards ceremony at HLAA Convention 2016, a nationwide gathering of organization members. "The experience of being an equal part of the community cannot be overstated."

Entertainment Access Glasses projects easy-to-see green text onto glass lenses as a superimposed overlay and lets users adjust the text height of the captions they see, creating a natural watching experience that eliminates the need to look away from the screen and keeps the text from interfering with the onscreen visual content. Light and comfortable, the Glasses help people with hearing loss understand character dialogue at the same pace as hearing people do. They let wearers adjust the size, perceived distance, and language of the captions. They also feature receiver box that allows wearers to plug in their headphones and access multiplex audio accompaniment for people with visual impairments.

Entertainment Access Glasses
  • *1The Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA), the United States' leading organization representing people with hearing loss, has a total membership of approximately 480,000 individuals and serves to provide the hearing-impaired with information, support, and advocacy.
  • *2The HLAA Innovation Award honors companies and individuals who have designed and promoted products, services, and/or standards for technology that improve the lives and experiences with hearing loss. Innovative technology allows people with hearing loss to find new and exciting ways to fully participate in the world around them. Innovation Awards go to a wide variety of technologies, including portable captioning devices, hearing aid-compatible mobile phones, wide-area listening systems, and all other forms of new innovation with the power to change the ways in which people with hearing loss live.

Japan Manual Contest FY2018 Award

The Japan Technical Communicators Association's "Japan Manual Awards" are the country's only official awards for product manuals. Established in 1991, the Japan Technical Communicators Association has presented Japan Manual Awards on a yearly basis since 1997 in hopes of providing users with manuals that incorporate new production technologies and quality improvements to deliver easy-to-understand information on how to use products safely.

Manual Contest FY2018 Award Recipients

Two Sony product manuals received awards at the Japan Manual Awards 2018 hosted by the Japan Technical Communicators Association. The first was “toio tsukaikata gaido (toio instruction manual)” for Toy Platform toio™, which won an excellence award for the General – Paper Category. The second was “aibo to no kurashi no hajime kata (How to begin life with aibo)” for entertainment robot “aibo,” which won the encouragement award.

The manual for Toy Platform toio™ was recognized because the tutorial was written to be read by children themselves. Various means were taken to help children enjoy reading the manual and playing with the product. For example, colors were changed for each chapter, and illustrations were combined with a casual writing style. Ample space was given to the margins, and the design helped make things easy for children to understand.

The design of the manual for aibo consists of many illustrations. It looks like a picture book which becomes the start of the invaluable story born by aibo and the owners living together. Each page describes a single procedure, written in large font. It was designed to provide the reader with a stress-free reading experience. Care was also taken in the words that were chosen to give a sense that the aibo is actually alive. For example, the owner does not “use” aibo but rather “lives” with aibo and the owner “wakes up” aibo instead of “starts up” aibo.

Japan Manual Contest FY2017 Award

Manuals for PlayStation® VR and a Sony digital voice recorder win awards

Sony Interactive Entertainment's PlayStation® VR's Quick Start Guide / Instructions on Wearing the Headset / Instruction Manual won the best manual and best plan awards in the General - Overall Category of the Japan Technical Communicators Association's Japan Manual Awards 2017. Meanwhile, the Operating Instructions for the ICD-UX560F/565F Digital Voice Recorder with Built-in USB won the superior manual award in the General - Individual Category. The PlayStation® VR manual was also nominated as Manual of the Year, a prize awarded to the best manual of the year.

The PlayStation® VR manual helps users learn new ways of enjoying and experiencing the product based on the product's characteristics. Because there are many cables that must be connected, setup is complex. There was concern as to whether the hookup method could be explained correctly through the manual. Many usability tests were carried out, and various ideas were brought together to create a manual that pursued new ways to make instructions easy to follow, resulting in a manual that enables many users to connect the cables correctly.

The manual for the ICD-UX560F/565F Digital Voice Recorder with Built-in USB was highly recognized for how clearly information was laid out in a small manual, which is easy to carry around. With the diverse ways in which these IC recorders are now used, the color used in the instruction headings makes it easy for users to quickly find the page they need to check to learn how to operate the recorder. The flow of instructions is uniform and starts with an explanation of the button(s) to use, after which step-by-step instructions are given. Furthermore, the content of frequent customer inquiries and information on other trends were used to create a spread titled "Useful Information" on frequently used functions.

Japan Manual Contest FY2016 Award

Sony's Glass Sound Speaker and Portable Ultra Short Throw Projector manuals win Japan Manual Awards

Two Sony manuals received honors at the Japan Technical Communicators Association's "Japan Manual Awards 2016," with the Glass Sound Speaker LSPX-S1 taking home a pair of awards, and "Outstanding Manual in the Paper Manual Category" prize and the "Executive Committee Special Award", and the Portable Ultra Short Throw Projector LSPX-P1 ranking as an "Outstanding Manual in the General Category." The Glass Sound Speaker LSPX-S1 manual was also nominated for "Manual of the Year."
In addition to praising the Glass Sound Speaker LSPX-S1 manual's design, which accentuated the joys of buying and owning the product, the awards committee also lauded the document for its ample coverage of vital information, clean layout, and simple content-features that made the manual easy for beginners to understand.

The manual for the Portable Ultra Short Throw Projector LSPX-P1 drew high marks for condensing the content to the essential information and making effective use of photographs and illustrations, all of which helped users get right to using the product without having to read too many details . The awards committee also commended the designers for keeping the paper manual to a minimal length and directing users to the online "Help Guide" for more information.

Japan Manual Contest FY2015 Award

Sony's Smart Tennis Sensor and Smart B-Trainer manuals win Japan Manual Awards

At the Japan Technical Communicators Association's "Japan Manual Awards 2015," Sony received honors for two product manuals: an "Outstanding Manual in the General Category" and the "Planning Award" for the Smart Tennis Sensor SSE-TN1 manual and another "Outstanding Manual in the General Category" for the Smart B-Trainer SSE-BTR1 manual.

The awards for the Smart Tennis Sensor SSE-TN1 reflected the manual's ability to deliver the information customers need to start using the product in a seamless fashion, with every detail coming in at just the right time. The method for providing information on the Smart Tennis Sensor product was a well-orchestrated, multi-stage, multi-mode (paper and smartphone) arrangement that began with offering potential buyers pertinent details at stores and continued on to delivering exactly the right information when the user opened the package, got the product ready, and then started using the product.

The Smart B-Trainer SSE-BTR1 manual, meanwhile, garnered accolades for its smooth approach to providing information. One key element was the "Start Guide," a handy, straightforward manual that encouraged users to access the Help Guide and download the app.