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  (Source: alarabiya.net)
Sony is closing factories and cutting jobs as part of its latest restructuring plan, announced in April

As part of its restructuring plan, Sony is closing a factory in Japan and will also cut thousands of jobs at its Tokyo headquarters.

According to Sony, it will shut down its Minokamo factory in Japan, which makes camera and mobile phone lenses. The factory contains about 840 workers that will lose their jobs at the end of March 2013.

In addition, Sony said it will invest in an early retirement plan that will reduce the employee headcount at its Tokyo headquarters by 2,000 -- or one-fifth of the HQ's workforce. This will happen by the end of fiscal year 2012.

Sony is closing factories and cutting jobs as part of its latest restructuring plan, which was announced by new CEO Kazuo Hirai back in April. The idea is to try to keep Sony afloat and competitive in the electronics market by axing about 10,000 jobs globally by March 2013. About 3,000-4,000 will be in Japan.

This restructuring will cost Sony $930 million during the fiscal year, but the outcome is expected to save the company $370 million annually.

When Hirai took over the sinking ship that is Sony back on April 1, he offered an entirely new plan for restructuring the company. A key idea behind the restructuring was to strengthen core businesses, including digital imaging, games and mobile. He also opted to take over the failing TV business, expand business in emerging markets, create new businesses and realign the business portfolio.

A lot of Sony's issues have to do with its TV unit, which has seen eight straight years of quarterly losses. Last December, Sony decided to shake up its TV division by negotiating a buyout of its 50 percent manufacturing stake with Samsung in the LCD joint venture. It also split its TV division into three units consisting of sales of LCD TVs, outsourcing manufacturing to cheaper foreign facilities and developing future TVs.

More recently, in May 2012, Sony reported a record annual loss of
$5.7 billion USD.

Source: Sony



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Dont screw up the PS4
By quiksilvr on 10/19/2012 8:18:34 PM , Rating: 2
They REALLY need to make it big with the PS4. They have to incorporate DVR functionality, more digital gaming and extensive Android and Google integration. This will be a huge advantage because gets ISPs to jump on board and hopefully Google TV integration in the future.




RE: Dont screw up the PS4
By StevoLincolnite on 10/19/2012 9:19:43 PM , Rating: 4
I honestly don't want them to "hit it big" with the PS4 which places them in the same position as the PS2 days.

I like the fact that the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 are pretty much neck and neck in sales, we have gotten allot of improvements to both consoles because of the heated competition.
And selling almost 70 million consoles isn't bad by any stretch anyway.


RE: Dont screw up the PS4
By BZDTemp on 10/20/2012 1:24:24 PM , Rating: 1
I'll taking Sony making it bug any day over any scenario where Microsoft is successful. With Sony there is no fine print and you get what you buy as opposed to Microsoft not following open standards and making you pay for both the console, monthly tax for playing on-line and over priced hardware.

I have both consoles and the PS3 is so much a better deal. The steering wheel I use on the PS3 can also be used on my PC, my headset on the PS3 is a "random" Nokia one, the upgraded hard drive was bought at the local computer store and instructions on how to do the drive swap was in the PS3 manual. ANd all this is no random thing it was the same with the PS2 vs. the original XBOX.


RE: Dont screw up the PS4
By StevoLincolnite on 10/20/2012 9:43:47 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
With Sony there is no fine print and you get what you buy


Not entirely accurate.

You need to remember allot of business and people bought PS3's for the Linux capability (So they can do compute stuff.) and backwards compatibility with PS2 games, Sony removed the backwards compatibility hardware in later revisions and removed Linux with a patch.

And when they removed Linux they created a massive storm of controversy which ended up with the PSN network being hacked.

quote:
Microsoft not following open standards


This is a big one, Blu ray could have been considered "closed standard" if it lost to HD DVD, but Sony has been known to have propriety hardware be it cables, memory sticks, you name it, instead of bracing open standards.

Microsoft isn't the only culprit with this, Apple is also a big offender.

quote:
The steering wheel I use on the PS3 can also be used on my PC


All my Xbox controllers, steering wheel etc' all work on my PC without a problem.

I have both consoles, I don't really care much for either; and rather game on the venerable PC in Eyefinity with all the eye-candy on max.

But one thing you don't want to happen is for just a single console dominating sales, otherwise a company gets arrogant and will charge whatever they want and innovation will stagnate.


RE: Dont screw up the PS4
By Samus on 10/20/2012 10:01:04 PM , Rating: 2
Is the memory unit for the XBOX 360 open standard? No. The Memory Stick is definately more 'open' because at least its multiplatform.

Is the hard disk unit in the XBOX 360 an open standard? Sure, there's a SATA drive in there, but with a proprietary boot sector, even if you wanted to hack it and install your own drive, you'd have to buy a drive of the right vendor and size and write a compatible MBR to it, a very complicated process. And it doesn't end there: you still need to buy a case and adapt its proprietary plug to the XBOX 360.

The XBOX 360 has no high definition optical medium, so even though Bluray is a 'proprietary' format (no more so than DVD in my opinion but thats neither here nor there...) at least the PS3 offers something of an advantage over a DVD drive.

The PS3 has had linux support removed from the last two generations, but the XBOX 360 never had this, so again, neither here nor there.

The XBOX 360 has gone through FIVE generations of power bricks. The PS3 uses a standard molex power cord because they have an internal power supply.

The XBOX 360 has not been reliable. All generations of the PS3 have.

The XBOX 360 uses a proprietary composite, component, and optical hookup. It didn't have a standard HDMI hookup until 2 years after launch. The PS3 has had all standard interfaces, all backwards compatible to the PS1 (17 year old plug) if you cared to hookup with composite/svideo/component although most PS3's are presumably connected with the HDMI interface they've shipped with all along.

And I could go on, but most importantly I want to finish with the obvious. Playstation Network is FREE and XBOX Live Gold is $40-$60 a year depending how you pay for it and what deals you get on how you sign up. This is huge, because although XBOX Live offers some things PSN doesn't, PSN offers 1) a web browser 2) email and 3) syncing with portable consoles like the PSP and PS Vita. XBOX does none of this. XBOX doesn't even officially support a mouse and keyboard because Microsoft doesn't want it confused with a computer.

All of these things are holding the XBOX back and keeping the PS3 further ahead than it should be, because XBOX has the superior media content and arguably gaming content. It's funny that the only reason the PS3 is surviving is because of the intentionally inflicted shortcomings of the XBOX 360.

Microsoft, as usual, is completely blind to their competitors.


RE: Dont screw up the PS4
By StevoLincolnite on 10/21/2012 3:40:17 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Is the memory unit for the XBOX 360 open standard? No. The Memory Stick is definately more 'open' because at least its multiplatform.


Pointless since you can use an External Hard Drive or USB Flash drive.

quote:
The XBOX 360 has not been reliable. All generations of the PS3 have.


Not entirely accurate, you are forgetting the YLOD. (Yellow light of death) that is occurring in allot of the older generation PS3's.
The newer model Xbox's are pretty solid in terms of reliability, but if you want to get into semantics on which company has more reliable hardware... Look no farther than the exploding battery fiasco that Sony had years back and hence had to do a massive recall.
Personally I would be much happier to trade exploding battery's for a device that may fail randomly.

However, neither should have happened, but unfortunately did.

quote:
The PS3 has had linux support removed from the last two generations, but the XBOX 360 never had this, so again, neither here nor there.


The problem I was getting at and you completely missed the point on is that Sony advertised the linux OS as a great feature then removed it from under consumers.
Microsoft never advertised any such feature so the point is moot.

quote:
This is huge, because although XBOX Live offers some things PSN doesn't, PSN offers 1) a web browser


Wrong.
You could use a web browser via a Media center plugin, however now Microsoft has launched Internet explorer on the Xbox.


RE: Dont screw up the PS4
By BZDTemp on 10/21/2012 10:52:33 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
You could use a web browser via a Media center plugin, however now Microsoft has launched Internet explorer on the Xbox.


A media center plugin. How is that supposed to count?
And as for IE that has literately just happened a couple of days ago.

And that exploding battery you mention exactly how does that have anything to do with the PS3? Even if we say it speaks to Sony in general then you can't do that without comparing the amount of hardware made by the two companies - then Sony has Microsoft beat many many times over.

And that YLOD you mention that is so little an issue I had to google it to even find out about it. It was less that .5% failure rate and that is after like 2 years of use. In contrast the 360 had failure rates in double digit percentages some claim even close to fifty percent.


RE: Dont screw up the PS4
By inperfectdarkness on 10/20/12, Rating: -1
RE: Dont screw up the PS4
By BZDTemp on 10/20/2012 1:37:47 PM , Rating: 2
You make no sense.

Blu ray is the better format so what is you problem with that?

And with regards to competition doing nothing for consumers could you please elaborate on that?

For starters who would you then want to make the hardware?

And if there is only one hardware maker what should push that platform forward?

And also for sure the support that has gone to developers from the hardware guys surely has helped in the making of great titles and then there is the in-house studios.

Finally I can think of plenty great exclusive titles. Here are a few series just for starters(each is at least two games):

PGR
Forza
Gran Tourismo
Halo
Uncharted
Little Big Planet
Ratchet & Clank
Motorstorm

And that is just for looking at my shelf.


RE: Dont screw up the PS4
By inperfectdarkness on 10/22/2012 2:51:47 AM , Rating: 2
Sony has quite simply languished in many hardware markets for several years now. From everything between digital cameras to televisions, Sony isn't doing so hot. A format is one thing, but beyond offering that--Sony isn't pushing much on the "gotta have it" front these days.

Personally, the hardware manufacturer should be whichever gaming company produces the most high-quality first-party content; they have the most rational basis for having a say in what hardware should be used. I don't favor having only one hardware manufacturer; but within the video-game industry, having more than 2 has almost always offered virtually no additional benefit and has marginalized the third player.

There is no reason that Forza couldn't be offered on the ps4, or Grand Turismo on the 720. The overlap between playstation and xbox markets is astonishingly pervasive. The key distionction between the two is MS offers "live" and Sony's online offerings pale by comparison. For this reason alone, having Sony "bow-out" of console hardware and developing software makese sense. They aren't leading in online gameplay & they certainly aren't leading in the number of high-quality first-party games (there are some, but you can probably count on one hand).

To be fair, MS doesn't have a compelling list of high-quality first-party titles either, but it does have the most robust online gaming system, and that takes the cake.


RE: Dont screw up the PS4
By FastEddieLB on 10/20/2012 7:46:05 PM , Rating: 2
Quit the hardware market? Thanks but no thanks, I quite enjoy my Sony TVs and Sony Walkman MP3 player, and I don't use a single piece of Sony-developed software outside of some of my video games, and that's not much of a market for a hardware giant that started in hardware.


RE: Dont screw up the PS4
By Silver2k7 on 10/20/2012 3:04:21 AM , Rating: 2
I think they are just moving that factory a different location or something. Someone mentioned earth quake proofing production with multiple sites. Either that or cheaper factories someplace else China? or possibly it has to do with their recent deal with purchasing a stake in and cooperating with Olympus.


"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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