E versus E (Updated)
While I was preparing the E-Series post for the blog I ran into a problem, lack of information in the Canadian press release. I was aware that the E-Series in Europe shipped with FM radio and even voice/radio recording functions, but neither was mentioned in the press release for the E. So I went to see if SonyStyle Canada had the new walkmans up for pre-order (available around September 23). To my surprise it turns out there are 2 different versions of the E-Series, the NWZ-E-34x for North America and the NWZ-E44x for Europe and probably the rest of the world.
The different model designation most likely explains why voice and FM recording are no longer available in North America. Here are just some differences between the European and NA models.
The European model boasts FM radio recording, voice recording, WM-port, custom wallpapers and different themes. I am certain that the first 3 are not present in the NA model but cannot seem to find any information regarding the themes and wallpapers. The North American models only other difference is that it uses a mini-USB connection for music transfer and ditches the WM-port all together. This is according to the SonyStyle Canada website and not the press release, which makes no mention of this. The US SonyStyle website mentions a “usb cable” in the box and checking the manual for the new E-Series does confirm that the USB cable used is a standard USB cable with a mini-USB plug. Click here for the PDF file.
With no WM-port the E-Series in North America will not be able to utilize any WM-port accessories such as the Bluetooth adapter or the dock or anything else released for the WM-port. It remains to be seen if Sony will switch to usb and ditch the WM-port all together, but so far I would not count on it. I am still wondering why Sony did not bother to mention this switch, if anyone knows do post a comment.
I just received an email back from Sony Canada and they confirm there is no WM-port.