Sony and Panasonic in trouble?
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dennishh
Registered: Nov 28, 2004
Total Posts: 760
Country: United States

Nikon has already gotten another sensor company to make their next generation of sensors, I believe. Sony also priced their products so high they gave the competition a way into their markets. Sony has made some grave mistakes but overall is a very innovative organization that will probably make it through this downturn.



risedal
Registered: Sep 25, 2012
Total Posts: 31
Country: Sweden

Nikon has Aptina and Renesas,Renesas manufactures D3S and d4 sensor and Aptina the J sensors who has a QE as the best Sonys sensors



risedal
Registered: Sep 25, 2012
Total Posts: 31
Country: Sweden

Sony's sensor departments are making money, and they have invested billions of dollars into theirs 7 modern high tech sensor lines
To compare with the Canon which has two old 180 lines , is there anyone who needs to invest a lot of money in modern equipments, it's Canon



michaelwatkins
Registered: Oct 08, 2011
Total Posts: 1699
Country: Canada

There are divisions within Sony and Panasonic which are producing core technologies like lithium ion cells (Panasonic is particularly strong in this) and sensors - these are used by many others and I'd have to imagine that those business units are profitable and won't disappear. Televisions? Maybe. Cameras? Dunno.



rscheffler
Registered: Aug 23, 2005
Total Posts: 4873
Country: Canada

Won't disappear in the same way Kodak's sensor division, Truesense, didn't.



philber
Registered: May 21, 2008
Total Posts: 7435
Country: France

I believe that we may be reading too much into this. Sure, Sony have been struggling for years with some consumer products, they are at the down cycle in their game console division, and their enterntainment business has ups and downs. Panasonic are much less innovative, and have a very conservative mangement style, for better or for worse. And both, like everybody else except Samsung, and, maybe, LG, are hemmorhaging in LCD TVs. Also, last yea's double whammy (tsunami, then Thai floods) has left scars.
But these behemoths have much, much more staying power than some of you seem to think. The Japanese banks do not let pillars of the Japanese economy go broke, and the business establishment would find a way to bail them out if that became a problem.
Just one example: Sony may be reporting masty numbers, but they still found the cash to acquire control of Olympus, didn't they?
So no worries, say I



15Bit
Registered: Jan 27, 2008
Total Posts: 3787
Country: Norway

If you want to quantify their decline, simply think of the Sony products you have bought in the last couple of years. In the old days i had a Trinitron based screen, a Walkman, a T68 mobile (still i think the best phone i every had), a VAIO laptop, a Playstation and a few other electronics. They had a reputation that people paid extra for. Now i have an E-reader and an Xperia mobile phone, and neither of those really stand out against the competition.

Now they seem to have no killer products and a diminishing reputation: Apple took the walkman into the 21st century, and also took over the market for stylish top the range computers and laptops, the mobile phone market is just a choice of who's Android container you like best (or Apple), and innovation on gaming consoles has been over at Nintendo (Wii) and Microsoft (Kinect).

Frankly, Sony seem to have had more Betamax's than Walkman's in recent years, with even the Blu-Ray victory not really achieving all that much. I can't think of anything they sell now that genuinely stands out as being innovative. Their attempts to control the entertainment industry struggle due to their lack of understanding of the market and unwillingness to change to suit what people want. They seem to get more bad press than good too, the rootkit fiasco being the best example.

It's sad to see them dying, but no more so than Kodak. And i would guess they fail for similar reasons - lack of marketable innovation combined with too much inertia to change quickly for modern markets.



mortyb
Registered: Feb 15, 2009
Total Posts: 1361
Country: Norway

philber wrote:
I believe that we may be reading too much into this. Sure, Sony have been struggling for years with some consumer products, they are at the down cycle in their game console division, and their enterntainment business has ups and downs. Panasonic are much less innovative, and have a very conservative mangement style, for better or for worse. And both, like everybody else except Samsung, and, maybe, LG, are hemmorhaging in LCD TVs. Also, last yea's double whammy (tsunami, then Thai floods) has left scars.
But these behemoths have much, much more staying power than some of you seem to think. The Japanese banks do not let pillars of the Japanese economy go broke, and the business establishment would find a way to bail them out if that became a problem.
Just one example: Sony may be reporting masty numbers, but they still found the cash to acquire control of Olympus, didn't they?
So no worries, say I


+100.



carstenw
Registered: Dec 26, 2005
Total Posts: 15362
Country: Germany

Philippe, I really hope that you are right, but even very large companies like Sony can go down, if they stop innovating or lose touch with what their customers want. It takes time, but no Japanese bank or other bailouts can stop them bleeding money, so something needs to fundamentally change for them to be viable again.

About Samsung, I don't really respect their consumer electronics business. It seems to me that they have clawed their way to the top by copying others, not only highly publicised stunts like their phones looking too much like iPhones, but more seriously they appear to have copied Sony of old. Each time they try to do innovation on their own without looking at Apple or Sony, the probability that they release absolute garbage seems quite high. I avoid buying their products for that reason. Both Apple and Sony have long histories of innovation, and for this reason I prefer to invest in these brands.

Panasonic I am more neutral towards. They have done well in their Micro Four Thirds exploits, and they have released a series of very good home projectors, but apart from that I know very little about their products.



Bifurcator
Registered: Oct 22, 2008
Total Posts: 9299
Country: Japan

I don't like either company much at all so no love-loss here. In fact I've been secretly hoping they would die off and go away for quite some time. Sony since the 70's and Panasonic for the last 15 years or so. So I say good riddens. Let Sony shrink up to specialize in the broadcast video market and Panasonic go back to exclusively making low-end junk stereos and AM radios.

I only wish any void they leave could and would be grabbed up by some American firms or start-ups.



carstenw
Registered: Dec 26, 2005
Total Posts: 15362
Country: Germany

Bifurcator wrote:
I only wish any void they leave could and would be grabbed up by some American firms or start-ups.


That is some pretty deep wishful thinking, unfortunately. As a result of a fixation on the lowest price, the US has been exporting their manufacturing capability to China and other countries so deep and for so long now that I cannot really imagine any way to go back. It would take serious time, not just the death of one or two competitors. Ironically, the situation in Europe is somewhat better, as the manufacturing is still going on here. The trouble would be pricing since European labour is expensive.



rattymouse
Registered: Feb 04, 2006
Total Posts: 4514
Country: China

carstenw wrote:
Bifurcator wrote:
I only wish any void they leave could and would be grabbed up by some American firms or start-ups.


That is some pretty deep wishful thinking, unfortunately. As a result of a fixation on the lowest price, the US has been exporting their manufacturing capability to China and other countries so deep and for so long now that I cannot really imagine any way to go back. It would take serious time, not just the death of one or two competitors. Ironically, the situation in Europe is somewhat better, as the manufacturing is still going on here. The trouble would be pricing since European labour is expensive.


Sadly misinformed. I work in a supporting industry to manufacturing. A global player with business in North America, Asia, and all of Europe. By far the weakest environment for manufacturing is Europe. Business there is appalling. Awful. Beyond awful. By contrast, North America is doing VERY well. Our profits from North American operations are up strong this year, due to heavy manufacturing volumes. Asia is doing well, but down substantially from last year. Europe is just sick.



carstenw
Registered: Dec 26, 2005
Total Posts: 15362
Country: Germany

Is that anything more than a one-company perspective?



FlyPenFly
Registered: Feb 14, 2011
Total Posts: 6396
Country: United States

Some high end manufacturing is returning to the us from China but mostly because while china can do scale + cheap or even scale + quality they can't do high quality + small scale.



edwardkaraa
Registered: Sep 27, 2004
Total Posts: 7295
Country: Thailand

rattymouse wrote:
carstenw wrote:
Bifurcator wrote:
I only wish any void they leave could and would be grabbed up by some American firms or start-ups.


That is some pretty deep wishful thinking, unfortunately. As a result of a fixation on the lowest price, the US has been exporting their manufacturing capability to China and other countries so deep and for so long now that I cannot really imagine any way to go back. It would take serious time, not just the death of one or two competitors. Ironically, the situation in Europe is somewhat better, as the manufacturing is still going on here. The trouble would be pricing since European labour is expensive.


Sadly misinformed. I work in a supporting industry to manufacturing. A global player with business in North America, Asia, and all of Europe. By far the weakest environment for manufacturing is Europe. Business there is appalling. Awful. Beyond awful. By contrast, North America is doing VERY well. Our profits from North American operations are up strong this year, due to heavy manufacturing volumes. Asia is doing well, but down substantially from last year. Europe is just sick.



I agree with that. Europe is sadly going bankrupt because it became a non productive consumer and has exported all its knowhow to Asia. The US is doing much better.



rattymouse
Registered: Feb 04, 2006
Total Posts: 4514
Country: China

carstenw wrote:
Is that anything more than a one-company perspective?


One company, with business at over 8,000 manufacturing customers across the world.



irish-george
Registered: Dec 15, 2005
Total Posts: 534
Country: United States

carstenw wrote:
Bifurcator wrote:
I only wish any void they leave could and would be grabbed up by some American firms or start-ups.


That is some pretty deep wishful thinking, unfortunately. As a result of a fixation on the lowest price, the US has been exporting their manufacturing capability to China and other countries so deep and for so long now that I cannot really imagine any way to go back. It would take serious time, not just the death of one or two competitors. Ironically, the situation in Europe is somewhat better, as the manufacturing is still going on here. The trouble would be pricing since European labour is expensive.


Obviously, you haven't heard of Element Electronics...they actually manufacture their larger TVs in Michigan.



Spyro P.
Registered: Mar 24, 2008
Total Posts: 2822
Country: Australia

Out of curiosity, what is a typical manufacturing worker's salary in the US?



ReneMurea
Registered: Aug 23, 2004
Total Posts: 1512
Country: United States

Sony has been downhill for almost 15 years now. Once they stop innovating, they stop existing. Think Kodak, Research in Motion, Palm, Nokia, Motorola and soon on the very same list, Apple.
Kodak and Palm are history. The others are struggling. As for Aaple. They really need someone like Jobs. Smaller and face lifted products won't cut it. I have an iPhone 4 and didn't see any reason to upgrade to 5. If the iPhone 6 is not something really innovative I move to whomever has something new, like Samsung.
As for Panasonic and Olympus, I'm really surprised they are still in business.



carstenw
Registered: Dec 26, 2005
Total Posts: 15362
Country: Germany

rattymouse wrote:
carstenw wrote:
Is that anything more than a one-company perspective?


One company, with business at over 8,000 manufacturing customers across the world.


But a Chinese company, right? As far as I am aware, European companies are less willing to outsource or source from Chinese companies, compared to American companies, both for human rights and local protection of manufacturing capability reasons, so what you are seeing from inside one company is the sum of many different bits, and a limited view at that.



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