Print 56 comment(s) - last by vol7ron.. on Sep 29 at 11:04 PM

  (Source: Sony)

  (Source: Sony)
The world's industry leader is dethroned in Japan... for now.

The Sony Walkman, a popular portable music device in the '80s that dropped into obscurity in the '90s , is back on top again -- in Japan. 
A survey by the Tokyo-based marketing research company BCN Inc. indicates that Sony -- which had consistently placed second to iPod -- placed first for the month of August.  

Sony’s share of the market for digital music players beat out Apple with a 47.8 percent market share last month, while the iPod captured 44 percent according to
 AFP and BCN.

"This is the first time that the Walkman outsold the iPod in monthly sales," said BCN analyst Eiji Mori.

BCN has been tracking monthly MP3 player sales in the country since 2001.  Sony was able to walk away with the lead for one week in September of 2001, but fell short for the month.  

Sony gained momentum
 in May with the release of its new Walkman S line. Mori speculated that consumers were holding off on buying an iPod ahead of the release of its newest generation.

"Sony's strategy to market relatively affordable products may have also contributed to the turnaround in the ranking in market shares," Mori added.

The iPod is expected to recapture the market again soon.  The highly anticipated, latest version of the device was revealed this week, but Sony could remain a contender for the top spot.  

The company also had a revelation this week.  Sony announced its plans to introduce new digital music service Music Unlimited.  The service will stream music over the internet to Sony TVs, PS3s, Blu-ray players and other devices.

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RE: Sound quality
By vol7ron on 9/3/2010 1:36:25 PM , Rating: 2
Are you serious?

Things to compare:
    - size (dimensions)
    - weight
    - battery life
    - screen in sunlight
    - water/sweat resistance
    - sound quality
    - storage size
    - price
    - software features (ability to share media with other devices, wireless sync.)
    - hardware features (camera, wifi)

The list goes on.

RE: Sound quality
By KIAman on 9/3/2010 3:27:27 PM , Rating: 3
Find me a modern compact mp3 player that doesn't feature...

1. small size
2. lightweight
3. long battery life (20+ hours)
4. visible screen
5. decent storage size (4gb+ )

All of them do nowadays. Your other mentions software and hardware features aren't becoming of an mp3 player. I'd use my phone for that. Besides, those unnecessary lead to an inflated cost.

What is the mp3 player's primary role? Playing music.

RE: Sound quality
By Reclaimer77 on 9/3/10, Rating: -1
RE: Sound quality
By Omega215D on 9/4/2010 3:31:06 PM , Rating: 3
uhh no. I have an $80 pair of Klipsch Image S4s and I definitely notice how "off" some players sound. My ipod touch is the weakest sounding player while my Sansa clip+ does a better job and my Cowon D2 wins hands down. No need to spend that much.

RE: Sound quality
By Reclaimer77 on 9/5/10, Rating: 0
RE: Sound quality
By Omega215D on 9/8/2010 8:26:15 AM , Rating: 2
The Sony upper range players come with good headphones, enough so that most people don't get rid of them. Most other manufacturers ship $5 buds even with their high end players.

Even still I did use the phones that came with the D2 and plugged it into the iPod, D2 and clip+ and guess what? I noticed how each player sounded different from each other with the D2 again winning hands down.

RE: Sound quality
By protosv on 9/5/2010 9:22:12 PM , Rating: 2
On my pair of Grado SR80i's I can easily hear the differences between players, clear as day. For that matter, I can clearly hear the differences between sound cards on different computers as well. Forced me to upgrade from my Creative SBLive 24-bit to an HT Omega Claro+. World of difference! They're also $100, not $500.

More to your point, you can easily find a pair of Creative EP-830 earbuds on ebay for under $10 including shipping that offer sound that is head and shoulders above what the white iPod earbuds give you. And, using those, you will immediately appreciate a better-quality sound from your mp3 player. When you compare an iPod with something like like a Cowon D9, iRiver, Sony or Creative Zen, even with the $10 Creatives, you will appreciate just how poor the SQ of the iPod is.

RE: Sound quality
By vol7ron on 9/29/2010 11:02:42 PM , Rating: 2
1. small size

"Small" size. What is that? That's not dimensions. Surely there's a difference between the iPod nano and 1Gen iPod. Both are small. In today's world every millimeter counts.

2. lightweight

Again "lightweight" is vague. Every ounce counts - you especially notice it while running with it in your hand.

3. long battery life (20+ hours)

Every mp3 player has 20+ hours of battery life? Really?... really?

4. visible screen

In sunlight? Really? They don't have a glare and they're all using LED?

5. decent storage size (4gb+ )

4GB is laughable. If you call that decent, you aren't listening to music and you most definitely aren't listening to lossless burns. 32GB holds 10% of the lossless music I want to store, which doesn't even include movies or tv shows. 300GB would be better in my pocket. -- and weight/size has a funny way of making a mention again, funny how comparing the storage matters.

Your other mentions software and hardware features aren't becoming of an mp3 player. I'd use my phone for that. Besides, those unnecessary lead to an inflated cost.

I have to say, I wasn't planning on disagreeing with your total response, but it seems like that's happening. Software and hardware ARE important. Show me only an MP3 player today. My watch and sunglasses are the only things that just play MP3s, everything else can play movies, show pictures, etc.
Hardware IS important especially when comparing it to different devices - that's what put Apple in 1st, the touch-wheel.
A lot of software code is reused and companies only need to charge more if they see fit. Google seems to make it look costless to the the consumer.

What is the mp3 player's primary role? Playing music.

I agree.
My home speakers plays music, though. My turntable plays music. It doesn't mean there aren't other things to compare.

RE: Sound quality
By Alexstarfire on 9/3/2010 3:32:55 PM , Rating: 2
We all know that only one thing really matters when comparing a popular Apple device to a non-Apple device.... does it have an App Store? Battery life comes second. If it has neither of those then it seems to flop every time. Seems like the SE Walkman has battery life going for it.

"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007
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