Playstation Network outage the longest in recent tech

Tech outages.

As far as tech outages go, the recent Playstation Network downtime is a real doozy. The company has been working hard to recover from the security breach, but that involves a move to a new server bank, software upgrades, testing, and on and on. But just how bad is it?

That graph from The Technologizer should tell you. You’ll probably remember a few of those dates from the wild amount of wailing and gnashing of teeth that accompanied those outages. And that graph says nothing of the amount of personal data that was pilfered from Sony servers, which led to the outage in the first place.

How does an online service recover from massive data theft and 3+ weeks of downtime. In all honesty, it might not. We’ll have to see how Sony plays its cards for the remainder of the year.

Source: The Technologizer


Your Ears Aren’t In Control

Sony Ericsson earbud guy.As predicted, Sony Ericsson’s great announcement for September 21st was underwhelming; it was so underwhelming, in fact, that I forgot all about it. I didn’t even think to look for it until today when I saw a drawing that vaguely resembled the creepy dude from the original website.

So what was the big announcement? Earbuds controlled by your ears! If it sounds confusing, that’s because it is. One big confused mess that reminds me just how out of touch tech companies can be. The new headphones, called the MH907, work by sensing how many buds are in your ears. Plug in two headphones and your music starts playing. Unplug one to pause your music. If you get a phone call you can take out both earbuds and then plug one back in to answer. To hang up, pull an earbud out, then put both earbuds in to start the music back up.

I think everyone has the same question here: why invent a product that requires a string of gestures to replace one-click functionality. You know what I do if I’m listening to music on my phone and I need to pickup an incoming call? I press “Answer Call.” Just once. To start my music back up, I press “Play.” That’s it. No plugging and unplugging. No pointless ad campaign to point out a worthless product. Just one of those button things we’ve been hearing about for so many years.


Sony Ericsson Claims To Change The Way You Listen To Music Forever

Sony Ericsson guy.We can pretty much guarantee this latest marketing campaign from Sony Ericsson will end in all sorts of fail. It starts with a web campaign, apparently called “Put Your Ears In Control.” The site features a goofy looking animated character with just one sentence across the screen:

Come back here on the 21st of September to see how the way you listen to music changes forever.

I know this sort of language isn’t exactly rare in the tech world, but give me a break. Forever? Hell, changes? This would have to be something truly radical to make the kind of impact the webpage suggests. I literally have no idea what Sony Ericsson could be talking about. Even if Sony put all the power of the Walkman behind whatever device will probably be launched, it still wouldn’t change much, and most certainly not the way I listen to music or the forever of that hobby.

Check back on the 21st for more of me mocking Sony Ericsson for making ridiculous statements about an underwhelming device.


Walkman Outsells iPod In Japan

Sony W205 Walkman.According to a Bloomberg report, Sony’s Walkman outsold the iPod in Japan last week for the first time in four years. It’s likely no small coincidence that Apple’s media event, the one at which they’re rumored to unveil a new line of iPod Touch and iPod Nano models with cameras, is just a week away.

One analyst thinks the shift came from consumers looking for less expensive devices. I’m calling bull on that one. It looks to me more like market forces aligned to give Sony the .9 percent jump over Apple in the week ending August 30th. Sony had recently released the W series Walkman, which got some good reviews, and again, Apple is almost certainly launching a new line.

I don’t mean to sound so vehemently fanboyish, but let’s be realistic. Sony has done anything big enough to really take back the market. Sure, the W series is one of the best looking devices they’ve designed, but you don’t just win back market share with a pretty device because it costs marginally less than the dominant competitor. I hope that analyst isn’t getting paid much, if at all.


Sony Posts $388 Million Dollar Loss

When Howard Stringer took over at Sony four years ago, they charged him with a hefty task: revitalize the company and resuscitate the brand. He’s been struggling to do so ever since.

Today the New York Times reported the number Sony has put to Stringer’s troubles: $388 million. In the red.

Now it’s no secret that Sony has been struggling. They’re getting pmeled in the video game market and soundly beaten with just about every other product they meant to sell competitively. Sony’s bright light is that they’re a world class company and they’ve made their name on innovative products. They can come back from what’s really a mild slump in their massive sales.

Thing is, they need to turn things around yesterday. I can’t say if that means getting rid of Stringer but Sony needs to take advantage of the fact that everyone is struggling and use their massive resources to turn the brand around.