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Digital video goes mobile

Japanese show off small screen stars

Portable video stored on memory cards is the next big thing, judging by the exhibitors at the Ceatec Japanese consumer electronics exhibition which opened today in Tokyo.

Sanyo is displaying a prototype digital video player-cum-recorder at the show. The player had a 3.8in LCD screen and a slot for CompactFlash memory cards.

The video recorder, which doubles as a docking station for the display, records video on to the CompactFlash card in Mpeg4 format. The 320x240 pixel resolution is equivalent to conventional TV, while the15fps frame rate is around half that of TV.

A 256MB memory card can hold about an hour of video and the prototype model Sanyo presented at Ceatec could also browse the Internet.

Matsushita (better known as Panasonic) has a smaller prototype video player that accepts Secure Digital memory cards and has a 2in TFT display. The player incorporates a USB and conventional video input.

Toshiba was showing off a mobile phone that lets users watch Mpeg4 digital videos on their handsets. The phone is expected to be one of several to go on sale in December when Japanese mobile telco Au launches its new EZmovie video service.

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