Sony and Panasonic rated as junk by Fitch. Bankruptcy likely?

Discussion in 'Audio Visual' started by EliteIntel, Nov 23, 2012.

  1. EliteIntel

    EliteIntel (Banned or Deleted)

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    Fitch Cuts Sony, Panasonic Credit Rating to Junk

    http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-11-22/sony-panasonic-credit-rating-cut-to-speculative-grade

    This isn't good news for those who just bought a Sony or Panasonic TV. Before you know it, you might find it even more difficult to buy spare parts if your TV has problems (trust me, you will have to replace some TV components throughout its lifespan). I was extremely frustrated with Panasonic when my last Panasonic had a blown capacitor. Took more than a month for Panasonic to respond and deliver it to me. Panasonic's customer service is non-existent.

    This also means Sony and Panasonic will have difficulty borrowing any money from investors. Basically no money = no R&D = no good TV's.

    Sharp is already in a worse situation where it is considering bailout or death.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2012
  2. Snufkin

    Snufkin Member

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  3. OP
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    EliteIntel

    EliteIntel (Banned or Deleted)

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    EliteIntel

    EliteIntel (Banned or Deleted)

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    I heard that they're talking about a bailout for Panasonic, similar to what's happening to Sharp, where Sharp's chances of having a bailout is quite certain.

    With all these companies having to order bailouts, it's worrying. This is because bailouts are worse in the long run. It will only create more debt and struggles.
     
  5. mtma

    mtma Member

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    The worst thing that can happen to any company is for it to lose good minds.

    It would be interesting to see how Panasonic's inside story compares - I would imagine the failings are fairly similar, but Panasonic probably has a marginally better (liquid) product diversification than Sony does.

    If it comes to it, it will be interesting to see who will end up with the patents and technologies both companies currently hold. It has been painful enough to see them sit on some of the current technology they already have but I guess it can go either way, someone could buy the IP to mothball it or take it to blaze the market with.
     
  6. SLATYE

    SLATYE SLATYE, not SLAYTE

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    I've always associated brands like Sony and (to a lesser extent) Panasonic with shops like Harvey Norman and DSE. I can't help but feel that the woes affecting one are the same as the woes affecting the other.

    Specifically, consumers are now able to very easily research which option suits them best. It's no longer enough to have a brand name with a good reputation from products developed ten years back - the products available right now need to be competitive.

    When was the last really great Sony product? Their flat-screen CRTs spring to mind, but CRTs have not been relevant for quite some time. These days they're on much the same level as the alternatives. Same for Panasonic; at one point Panasonic plasma TVs were pretty much the best of the best but now they don't seem to be anything really special. That strategy can work perfectly well, but not when prices are higher than all the competing products. See Toyota for an example of what happens when it's done right.


    Sony's product development has often been based on "what will make the most money for us when consumers buy it?" (with the silent assumption that consumers will buy it) rather than "what will consumers actually buy?". The result is proprietary stuff like ATRAC and the "rootkit" DRM on CDs that's biased very heavily towards making Sony rich and very weakly towards making consumers happy. It doesn't take much effort to see that there will be very few consumers willing to pay for this stuff.

    It looks like the next Playstation may be doing just this. Desktop PC hardware (and low-end hardware at that) shoved into a "Sony" case and severely restricted by Sony software, then (presumably) sold for Sony's usual $1000 launch price. If it sells, it'll be very profitable, but persuading people to pay a lot of money for something that is slower than the PS3 in the "supercomputer" tasks that got the PS3 so much publicity could be tricky.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2012
  7. SupremeMoFo

    SupremeMoFo Member

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    Financially yes, but not for the product. Corolla, Camry etc have been bad products for a long time, despite their success.
     
  8. RyoSaeba

    RyoSaeba Member

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    SONY used to be quality gear, and people would pay a premium knowing it's quality goods. But over time they put profit above quality. Slowly they gears were becoming cheaper but their price remains high. They also made many errors in judgement. Long ago, we would pay the premium to buy SONY because it was quality, it was prestigious. These days I see sony and I think here's another BOSE. All looks and bugger all quality. And their cockiness is also a downfall. Be cocky all you want when you have money. But they're not in a position to be cocky these days. What I mean is like others are saying, they like to use proprietry stuff to lock people into buying their gears and limiting their options. Memory stick, various DRM, etc. If they'd only bring out something that's compatible with other stuff and people are not locked into a closed environment, I'm pretty sure they'd make much more money.

    If SONY does go down, I really feel sorry for those who made the company what it was. Then again, I know exactly how it feels to have an incompetant boss. My ex-manager was one of the most useless and incompetant man i've ever met. However he can talk himself up like a pro. Infront of the committee and CEO he elevates himself to godly status and promises them the world. In thruth, everything he promises are pipe dreams, unrealistics proposal and simply unplanned. Thankfully he's left and we now have someone who's the complete opposite.

    I do hope that all 3 companies can hang in there and tough it out. Then come out stronger than before. They do make some good products, just not enough of them.
     
  9. kombiman

    kombiman Dis-Member

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    Shame if Panasonic went down, Sony on the other hand would be the return of karma **cough** rootkit**cough**
     
  10. nico6

    nico6 Member

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    Both these companies became powerhouses when 'Made in Japan' went from a bad thing to a very good thing. Now Made in Korea, and to a fast growing extent Made in China, are good things too. Japan can no longer compete solely on quality (neither real nor perceived). Consumers are highly informed and price and respect for the customer are king.
     
  11. Brooa

    Brooa Member

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    sony can die in a hole as far as im concerned but it would be a shame to see panasonic go. they make some top notch products at really decent prices!
     
  12. SnooP-WiggleS

    SnooP-WiggleS Member

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    Gotta disagree on this point. The current 50 series plasmas (in particular insane bang for buck ST50) are the best they've ever put out. Sadly most people get ledlcd which panasonic are not so good at with their lower contrast IPS panels.
     
  13. thecondor

    thecondor Member

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    Why? U like seeing 10's of 000's of people loose their jobs, gives you a warm fuzzy feeling inside does it?
     
  14. mtma

    mtma Member

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    I think the sad fact for Sony is that they are excellent at developing technologies, but the management of the step between having developed a technology and going to market is exceptionally poor. ATRAC as an example raised before was actually truly good technology in comparison to competitors at the time, developed at the right time (despite if you had asked the consumer at the time of developing it they would have had no idea they even wanted anything like it), but after being pulled down by the anchors of Sony's policy (or perhaps just their culture) of keeping everything proprietary and held to maximise the immediate business profit of itself and its partners, the technology fell behind in popularity and eventually sank.

    Sure it shouldn't be giving anybody fuzzy feelings that thousands of people are going to be out of a job, but on the flipside these people and technologies may finally be released from the destructive cycles which has led Sony to see this day and move on to greater things and generate even more jobs in the future for others than they could have ever at Sony.

    It is a matter of irony that their IPS-alpha panels are actually better for general TV viewing because the contrast and colour stays much more stable over a broader range of viewing angles - which for a TV that goes into a rumpus for example is actually a desirable quality.

    The befalling of Panasonic isn't so much the technology or quality behind the product but their very muted marketing. Their brand building efforts outside of asian markets is really quite weak, especially when you compare it to Sony's.

    Their product marketing is also quite lacking. For TV's they're quite easily out manoeuvred by the competition.

    Even on the appliance front - OK, well you've got a square tray in the microwave but what is the significance? Yeah it has more cubic capacity but I don't buy my chicken in a cube do I? As a consumer I would have no idea from Panasonic's marketing alone that I could put into the microwave last night's refrigerated left-overs and come back in two minutes or less, and the whole thing would be re-heated evenly, without stirring. To find that out I would actually have to use the thing. Competitor products either flatly can't do that or take many more minutes to. Sadly enough it's also not because there's new technology in the microwave at all (although improvements undoubtedly has a contribution), you could have bought a microwave that could do this back in 1987.
     
  15. maev

    maev Member

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    I guess consumers decided that their brains require a proprietary connection that only the other brands offer.

    Screw sony screwing consumers. I can't speak much about them, but from laptops, tv's, cameras and ps3s; their designs are flawed and more than likely designed for exploiting recurring instances (broken products, faulty products, proprietary part requirements ~ see camera batteries).

    This post is rather cryptic, but i cbf venting my less than impressive past with sony.
     
  16. bennyg

    bennyg Member

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    Globalisation grew these companies, globalisation (i.e. China) is now killing them.

    It's hard to build a brand name that relies on perception of superiority to demand a premium price, when your product isn't actually superior and is put together from parts from the same component factories as the cheapies.

    E.g. a decade ago Foxconn was responsible for cheap crap Dell mobos and the like and their name was mud. Now they're responsible for a lot of iStuff which doesn't have the same reputation for cheapness
     
  17. Cask

    Cask Member

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    As someone who forked out $1900 for a Panasonic DVD/HiFi system only to have it crap on me months later; I'm not overly surprised.
    The region locking is pretty ridiculous too. Usually it's a matter of an unlock code but more often than not with Panasonic you have to invest in either a special remote or a modchip that requires soldering onto the board - and if you're me then fark that and just buy a cheap Samsung player which the unlock's are easy for.

    I can't help but feel like Sony disappointed me with the Playstation 3 and the Vita - mostly because the costs were so damn high and there has been a bit of a smear campaign against Sony consoles since the whole hacking thing. On top though, I just haven't been able to grow comfortable with Sony's media products.
    The Sony Dream Machine is the best alarm clock ever but other than that I think these guys didn't jump out at the market in terms of pricing. Shame
     
  18. OP
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    EliteIntel

    EliteIntel (Banned or Deleted)

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    The only reason why Panasonic is more expensive is because of the high yen.

    There is no reason to buy Panasonic.
     
  19. OP
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    EliteIntel

    EliteIntel (Banned or Deleted)

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    Sony products are always low quality these days. My last Sony music player made so many squeaky sounds and eventually it died within 3 months.
     
  20. SupremeMoFo

    SupremeMoFo Member

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    You really like spamming your own propaganda don't you?
     

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