Saturday, January 22, 2005


There are a handful of articles out there centered around a recent interview with Ken Kutaragi, executive deputy president of Sony. He basically admits that Sony had their lunch eaten by Apple and others in the portable music race (remember Sony's Walkman brand basically owned the space at one time?) due to Sony's tenacious clinging to ATRAC and DRM technologies. The reason for hanging on to ATRAC and DRM is because Sony also owns hysterically nervous record companies, of course.

This interview with Kutaragi seems to indicate that Sony will be turning over a new leaf. This little blip from MacWorld caught my eye:
When [Sony] did launch a service it stuck to a proprietary encoding system and offered no support in its players for the widely used MP3 format. The result has been a poor showing for Sony -- traditionally one of the strongest names in portable audio -- in the market for players based on flash memory and hard-disk drives.


Sony formed an internal group in November called Connect Company that spans several business units. Its goal is to tie together its digital music efforts in the areas of hardware, content, online sales and software, and to help Sony develop a more user-friendly digital music system. Later that month Sony said it would offer a new version of its Network Walkman player with support for MP3. Owners of earlier models can get their players upgraded to support the format.


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