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back to article Sony and Nokia still a hit with Asian consumers

Nokia and Sony remain two of the most powerful brands in Asia despite high profile problems affecting both companies which have sent their market share, revenues and global reputation plummeting in recent months, according to a new piece of research. Market consultancy Nikkei BP Consulting evaluated 60 global brands in eight …

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Anonymous Coward

LOL

did someone just put Sony and Nokia in the same predicament?

Nokia are genuinely screwed, Sony are just having some troubles in certain sectors (most of which they have already ditched).

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Re: LOL

For what it's worth, I think Sony's problems are deeper and more fundamental than Nokia's, and that Sony are still in denial about them, but as neither of us really have any privileged insight into either company, it's all opinion really.

To me, Sony have struggled since Akio Morita retired, and the successor managment have done nothing but harm to the brand he built. I liked Morita's Sony - management realised that it was selling to customers, and that the customer's was therefore the only opinion that mattered. Buying into the media business was the start of the end for that view. They lost their focus on keeping customers happy by producing good products, and instead began to treat their customers as "recurring revenue streams" rather than people. Big, big mistake. Once that idea permeates an organisation, you start to get cynical, start to push things onto your customers that you wouldn't accept yourself. Basically, like Nokia, they have been making stuff that customers don't want because they think they're too big for customers' needs to matter anymore. However, unlike Nokia, this realisation has not yet sunk in.

Nokia is in a similar, but different problem, and it's very like the situation Apple was in in the late 1990's (which I know quite well from inside, as I worked for Apple at this time). They believed they would always be the biggest, most important company in their business, and didn't see their competitor slide in and steal that market from under them with an "inferior" product that met customer's needs better (with Apple, it was that customers wanted something cheap that would work with their office systems; with Nokia it was that customers would pay big money for something flashy, even if it had next to no features). Like Nokia, Apple had a scattergun approach to product development that mainly bamboozled the customer, and left the company with so many niches that there was no one "good" product that you could put your marketing budget behind (and, oh dear God, that marketing -- Apple's was appallingly bad, touchy-feely garbage). However, like Apple had, Nokia have a good set of tools to get out of their mess: they have some excellent R&D outputs (both in manufacturing techniques and also software), a large cash reserve to fund a new set of projects, a highly talented product design capability, and finally, a CEO who knows there's a problem and is taking unpopular, but correct, decisions to fix it. A lot of today's Apple fans probably weren't around to see how much anger there was when Apple killed stuff like HyperCard, MacApp, OpenDoc, the entire Newton line, and the whole OS 8/Copland/Gerswhin project roadmap, or even when Apple struck deals with arch-enemy Microsoft... but these were necessary decisions to focus the company on making things people wanted. Apple's stellar success is down to that one strategy - stop beancounting, stop listening to wishy-washy brand consultants: if you just trust your own people to make the best products they can, your customers will respond.

I believe Nokia are further along this recovery plan than Sony are.

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"I believe Nokia are further along this recovery plan than Sony are"

We will IMO know by Q4 of this year. If MS do not screw up with what they are developing with Apollo (WP8) and if Nokia do have a genuine flag-ship phone in the run-up to the holiday season (as they call it on the other side of the pond), then the process of getting out of the woods will be seen to have been clearly established if far from complete.

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MJI
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Sony & Nokia

Well when my N8 is due for replacement we are going Android, and I think those new Sony (Erricson) phones look really nice.

I just do not know what will happen to Nokia. Sony do need to shift their markets though - which they are doing.

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Re: Sony & Nokia

Same here though I'm hoping that by that time there will be something as good on the market.

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Stop

Re: Sony & Nokia

I take it you haven't had a hands-on with the new LUMIA's then?

I took to the lumia800 straight away, and everyone who has tried mine is upgrading to one.

Can't fault the design, or the OS (winphone 7.5)

Can't wait to try the LUMIA 900 when it comes over here in a few weeks.

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WTF?

The lumias?

Anyone who has tried my 800 (including me and my wife) for more than 30 minutes has swore never to get one of the damn things again! No bluetooth, no usb transfer, 25% of the interface wasted with a black bar just to show an arrow at the top, no decent support for dropbox or box picture sync (it only works with skydrive), terrible multitasking - you never know if an app will be paused where you left it, will restart, or kept working on the background when you switch back to it - rigid and limiting interface, no tethering, no ad-hoc wifi, unintuitive cop&paste and cursor positioning, fixed and non-context sensitive search button (each app must implement a second one), slow browser, etc. In the end, a very incomplete and limited OS, in a obsolete hardware that for sure won't run windows 8. The nice things about the 800 are the design and the screen (and this one is from the N9 and has a part wasted behind the fixed buttons at the bottom just to illuminate them).

If Nokia had insisted on the N9/meego and added Android (and maybe even WP7.5 for the masochists) phones to its lineup, they would have had a chance. Betting the farm on an incomplete OS, all that they have to hope for is a single digit market share as a simple box pusher, with low margins and dependent of Microsoft's whims. Ask Sendo how it is to be on that position...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The lumias?

The black bar is much more like 10% of the screen and is used so that you can scroll up and down with your thumb without crossing over any of the icons on the screen. It's actually quite a smart, on pretty much all other touch screen phones I've used, you have to block out areas of the screen in order to scroll it.

Anyway, I've had pretty much exactly the opposite experience with other users of my phone than you. also, the bluetooth works fine for headphones and with my car hand's free.

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Re: The lumias?

As for bluetooth, seems like I forgot to write "file or contact transfer". All that the incomplete bluetooth implementation in WP7 supports is audio, and contacts reception. There is no way to send a photo (or another file) to another phone without using my 3G data cap or being connected to a wifi network.

Saying that having that screen expense wasted so you can scroll with your thumb, on a already low resolution screen, sounds like a sorry excuse. So you don't have to block the screen, but you already lose a lot more screen space than you would block!

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Re: Sony & Nokia

yeah. I've tried one. Didn't like it. Couldn't be described as intuitive, Screen set up and widgets better on the N8, Battery life better on the N8, Camera better on the N8, bluetooth better on the N8, WiFi control better on the N8, Zune - nine danke.

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Re: The lumias?

And whats wrong with Symbian 3 absolutely nothing the C7 is a great phone .

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FAIL

the third world

I guess the third world hasn't gotten the memo about Sony and DRM (less money on table so probably don't push it as much there). As pointed out above, the day Sony bought a media studio is the day when their hardware began its long slow decline into mediocrity. We would say iWalkman or whatever instead of iPod if their media division wasn't the one really calling the shots and trying to push DRM infected Trojan horse hardware on a public that isn't buying it.

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Holmes

Nokia has a good reputation?

Just wait until they get those Microsoft-based so-called smartphones. That will take care of the residual reputation...

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