Thursday, August 24, 2006

So long Sony...?

This has not been Sony's year…

It all stared with the iPod. The Walkman used to be the king of portable audio. When was the last time you saw one. I mean one being used, not in a museum or a picture or something. Take your time…

It all stared with the DRM/Root Kit shit storm of 2005. While the lawsuits and investigations still continue, the public at large (meaning the non-techie crowd) had largely forgotten it and the stain of embarrassment was starting to fade.

Enter Playstation 3 and Blu-Ray. Or “a gaming system that no one can afford that supports a standard that no one gives a fat rat’s ass about.” I’m not a gamer, but even if I were I can’t imagine spending $600 and a gaming system. Especially when the 360, which has a whole “mess’o” games slated to come out, and the Wii (which looks like a much cooler console) are it’s competition. And as for Blu-Ray? Oh Sony, did you learn nothing from the Betamax?

Yesterday, Dell announced its recall of laptops with Sony batteries. Not bad enough? Well, how bad does it make it now that airlines are now making an examples of your consumers?

Now it’s Apples turn to ruin Sony’s day.

So I’m wondering; how much can Sony take? Their sales of consumer electronics are down. They are still facing lawsuits and investigations from “Root Kit-gate.” They have sunk a butt-load of money into a console and standard that many people say is DOA. And now their laptop batteries are potential explosive devices, which in some case are being deployed near a very “personal” (not to mention tender) area of peoples bodies. The first “my laptop ruined my life” lawsuit is in the works already.

A lot of people say “Sony’s a big company. They have a ton of money, they aren’t going anywhere.”


I would like you to think about some other companies that had lots of money;

Pan Am
Eastern Airlines
Builders Square
Montgomery Ward
Big Bear

Seems to me it can happen to anyone…


Philip said...

How much can Sony take?

You speak about Sony like they are the Mom & Pop Falaphal stand on the local corner.

Sony is so big that I sing their praises in some areas and curse their name in others. I literally think their CEO could stick his fingers in his ears and rock back and forth for a year straight and the company still wouldn't be close to 'going anywhere'.

Sure they would lose business (as they probably will on several of the issues you brought up) but at the end of this year they will still be an extremely strong corporation with a respectable portion of the market share.

Let’s not worry about the health and care of the multi-billion dollar company just yet. =)


James Bender said...


Pan Am
Eastern Airlines
Builders Square
Montgomery Ward
Big Bear

Builders Square and Big Bear aside, these companies (especially Pan Am!) were in situations similar to Sony with reguard to market share and assets.

And just today more bad news; the PS3 has been downgraded, but I notice that the speculation is that the price will not go down. Which makes sense, I saw one report that Sony is taking about a $1000 loss on every PS3 sold (Chuck, if you're reading can you confirm/deny this?), hoping to make it up on games and licensing. This worked for them and Microsoft in the past, but one grand a unit is a lot of games!

Enough bad decisions, and ANY company can topple, I don't care how much momentum they have.

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