Sony BDP-S185 Blu-ray Player My wife recently destroyed our old DVD player by playing it to death. It was a few years old, so we binned it and as she was off to Lakeside that afternoon, we agreed for her to buy a new one.

Later that afternoon she called me to say she’d seen a Sony Blu-Ray player that allowed internet streaming so she could watch BBC Iplayer, Love Films, ITV player, YouTube videos etc etc etc. It sounded perfect, and it was just £99 so she picked one up.

5 minutes later she called me and said it was no good. I asked why, and she replied that the assistant in Currys said it needed a dongle to connect to the wireless, and Currys cheapest dongle was £70 ! Firstly I was surprised that Sony made a product they stated connected to your home internet network but it didn’t have wireless built in, then I was even more shocked that Currys cheapest dongle was £70. I told her we had a spare dongle, so go ahead and buy it anyway.

Later that day she came home with a brand new Sony BDP-S185 Blu-ray Player purchased from Currys for £99.99. It looked like a mini PS3 making it even more annoying that it didn’t have a wireless connection, unlike the PS3, and unlike my £49 printer which happily prints with information sent over the home wireless network. So off I went to set it up for her. The Sony BDP-S185 Blu-ray Player is a neat little package, it looked good, and the setup was simple. Within a minute or two I had a blu-ray disc playing and the images were perfect.

Then came the not so easy bit, the dongle. I plugged it straight into the USB port and sat back, expecting a simple “locating network” message to pop up on the screen. Instead it said “USB device not recognised”. When I trying toying around with the settings on the Blu-Ray player, it just kept mentioning “wired connection”. The thing is, the new Blue-Ray player was being installed in our loft room, so no chance of running a cable from my ground floor network box.
Becoming increasingly annoyed, I resulting in doing what all men hate doing when it comes to new gadgets… I read the instruction booklet.
After 5 minutes of reading, I discovered no mention whatsoever of a dongle being used in the USB port. Instead, it stated “Using the USB connection, you can play a variety of media from USB memory sticks, so you can enjoy music, photos and films from your USB stick.” So the USB is just for memory sticks only, and NOT for wireless dongle connection, making the whole purchase an utter waste of money.

Not being put off by the fact I’d read the booklet, and played with the onscreen options, I went straight to Google and demanded to know what the world was saying about the Sony BDP-S185 Blu-ray Player and its lack of wireless capabilities.
After about and hour, yes, really an hour… I found some information that I was looking for, well I found two pieces of information really. The first thing I found was Dixons were selling the same Sony BDP-S185 Blu-ray Player for £20 less. That annoyed me more. Then I found that Sony’s products, only allow Sony’s dongles, you can’t just use any dongle.
BUT… no where on any documentation regarding the Sony BDP-S185 Blu-ray player does it says you can use a dongle, and no where does it say you must use a Sony UWABR100 USB Network Adapter.
However, I did find HiwayHifi – which states “Sony BDPS185 Blu Ray Player with Online Services & BBC iPlayer (with optional UWA-BR100 Wi-Fi dongle)” – That is the only information I could find after an hour of searching the internet that mentions the need for a Sony UWABR100 USB Network Adapter Dongle with the Blu-ray player.

Amazon sell the Sony UWABR100 USB Network Adapter Dongle for £49.99 – half the price of the Blue-ray player, if you bought the expensive one from Currys! So that is what I’ve bought, but unless HiwayHifi are correct, I’ve completely wasted more money.
I’ll let you know when the dongle arrives…..

UPDATEread this post to see how the story ended.