Howard Stringer (Sony CEO) and various talking heads from throughout the company have been teasing inter-operability amongst Sony devices for many years now. Remember the mobile phone photograph that was sent directly to a picture frame in an early demo of Home? Well that’s the sort of thing that Sony have been quietly (and occasionally not so quietly) talking about for years.
New evidence is surfacing that the impending alterations to Sony’s networks are due to be made and some aspects of the service might start rolling out in Spring 2010. This makes sense as it gives the company a bit of time to see how well and how widely used the Aino (remember the Sony Ericcson phone that can call up your XMB?) features will be and also to work on improving their network infrastructure to a point where it can handle the extra traffic. Expect them to roll the service out gradually but eventually the aim is believed to be a Sony television that can talk to your Sony Ericcson mobile phone and your PS3 and PSP over the PSN.
The CNN Money article is quite long winded and obviously examines the developments from a dry financial and business-led perspective but basically they say that this is Sir Howard Stringer’s final push to get the company he has already reformed so much back on top of its game and competing in sectors where it has lost significant market share since the whole world demanded immediate gratification and American companies started to gnaw at the consumer electronics market. Sony has always been a traditional Japanese company but Sir Howard has taken significant measures to modernise it, not least of which is the appointment of Kaz Hirai as the head of Sony Computer Entertainment.
Hirai is a significant figure in the advancement of Sony’s marketability and their aims for a networked future and it was Stringer who appointed him to his current role, overseeing not just the PlayStation brand but Walkman and Vaio too. If Sony is to mount one massive final push back towards its dominant role it is surely the combination of Sir Howard Stringer and Kazuo Hirai who will lead the charge and there probably isn’t a better duo for the job.