The Japanese electronics giant says the ‘credit card’ size device can store 3,000 more songs than Apple’s iPod, and will undercut the market leaders price tag.

The ‘Network Walkman-HD1′ will have a 20-gigabyte memory to store 13,000 four-minute songs, and is expected to cost Y53,000 (£268) in Japan and less than $400 in the US, where it will launch in mid-August.

Although the iPod has a 40-gigabyte memory- more than double that of the Walkman- it can only hold 10,000 songs. Sony says the NW-HD1 can pack more songs in a smaller storage space by using advanced compression technology.

Sony claims the device will deliver 30 hours of playback on a rechargeable battery, three times longer than the iPod, and is the smallest of its class.

“The Sony Walkman player was born out of a pure love of music and the understanding that people want to listen on their own terms,” said Todd Schrader, a vice president at Sony Electronics in the US “That’s why we are introducing a hard drive player and a flash media-based device with the kind of durability and long battery life that people have come to expect from a Walkman product.”

Read more at the following sources: Digital Media Europe, BBC News