By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Tokyo – Sony reported net and operating profits and higher sales in its fiscal third quarter, while also announcing plans to make TV operations a separate subsidiary and to sell off its Vaio PC business.
The sale of Vaio and the revamp of its TV business will result in layoffs of about 5,000 by the end of fiscal year 2014, Sony said. The restructuring should result in 100 billion yen in savings starting in fiscal year 2015, the company noted.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.
Tokyo — Sony Corp. is reportedly in talks with investment fund Japan Industrial Partners to sell off its Vaio personal computer division, according to reports out of Japan.
The reports, which cited an anonymous source familiar with the matter, said proposals call for a new company to be set up by Japan Industrial Partners to take over the Vaio brand’s operations in Japan.
Sony is also considering a withdrawal from overseas PC markets, Reuters reported.
New York – Moody’s Investor Services Monday downgraded Sony Corp.’s credit rating to junk status as the Japanese entertainment technologies conglomerate continues to struggle to capture significant share of the smartphone and tablet markets.
Moody’s lowered Sony’s rating to Ba1, one level below investment grade, from Baa3. In an advisory alert, Moody’s said the outlook for the company is stable.
Sony’s credit is also rated junk at Fitch Ratings, and is on the second-lowest investment grade with Standard & Poor’s.
Los Angeles – Sony continued to make major changes among key leadership personnel this week.
This time, Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) closed its technologies unit and laid off an undisclosed number of employees, including its president Chris Cookson, and Mitch Singer, chief digital strategy officer.
London – Sony Mobile Communications unveiled two new mid-tier Android smartphones, one focused on music playback and the other focused on video playback and picture taking.
The model designed for video playback features 6-inch screen, making it one of the company’s largest-screen phones. Sony also offers a 6.4-inch phone, the Xperia Z Ultra, with full-HD display. It became available last year in the U.S. as an unlocked GSM phone.
BOOTH 14200 Sony CEO and president Kazuo (Kaz) Hirai wistfully reminisced about the wows that impacted him a kid and how he wanted to instill that sense of wonder throughout the myriad layers and divisions of his company, taking his audience on a journey from his childhood to future during his keynote at the Venetian Hotel.
Las Vegas — Sony plans to expand playback of high-resolution audio files to Blu-ray HTiBs and an active tabletop speaker for the first time, and it will add high-resolution decoding to more A/V receivers, the company said here at International CES.
Sony also plans soon to ship its first portable high-resolution headphone DAC soon, and it brought a portable high-resolution pro-audio recorder into consumer channels.
Sony Electronics’ buzz word during its Monday press event and for the 2014 International CES is “Play” – with the emphasis on Ultra HD TV and mobile devices.
Sony made Ultra HD TV a central part of its CES press conference to unveil more 4K LCD TVs, announce expanded native Ultra HD content solutions, and to debut the industry’s first consumer-focused Ultra HD camcorder.
Also showcased by Sony was new wearable-technology and mobile devices, all designed to evoke a spirit of fun in the user.
Tokyo – Sony Corp. has reversed a decision to sell off its lithium-ion battery unit, and will instead try to turn the business around buoyed by a weakened yen and increasing smart device demand, the Nikkei business daily reported Sunday.
The report added that the battery unit is also seeing increased demand for some of its new products.
Tokyo – Panasonic and Sony continue to winnow down their spending in the consumer electronics space, this time announcing that the two companies have elected to end a joint venture on OLED TV panel production.
A terse announcement, carried by the Wall Street Journal Monday, cited “technical challenges in improving panel durability and lowering production costs.”