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, commonly stylized as SONY, is a Japanese multinational conglomerate corporation headquartered in
Minato, Tokyo is a Special wards of Tokyo, special ward in Tokyo, Japan. It is also called Minato City in English. It was formed in 1947 as a merger of Akasaka, Tokyo, Akasaka, Azabu and Shiba, Tokyo, Shiba wards following Tokyo City's Local Autonomy Act, tr ...
, Japan. As a major
technology company A technology company (or tech company) is an electronics-based technology, technological company, including, for example, business relating to digital electronics, software, and internet-related services, such as e-commerce services. Details Accor ...
, it operates as one of the world's largest manufacturers of consumer and professional electronic products, the largest
video game console A video game console is an electronic device that Input/output, outputs a video signal or image to display a video game that can be played with a game controller. These may be home video game console, home consoles, which are generally placed i ...
company and the largest
video game publisher A video game publisher is a company that publishing, publishes video games that have been developed either internally by the publisher or externally by a video game developer. They often finance the development, sometimes by paying a video game ...
. Through Sony Entertainment Inc, it is one of the largest
music companies Music is generally defined as the art Art is a diverse range of human activity, and resulting product, that involves creative or imaginative talent expressive of technical proficiency, beauty, emotional power, or conceptual ideas ...
(largest music publisher and second largest
record label A record label, or record company, is a brand or trademark of Sound recording and reproduction, music recordings and Music video, music videos, or the company that owns it. Sometimes, a record label is also a Music publisher (popular music), pub ...
) and the third largest
film studio A film studio (also known as movie studio or simply studio) is a major entertainment company or motion picture company that has its own privately owned studio facility or facilities that are used to make films, which is handled by the production ...
, making it one of the most comprehensive media companies. It is the largest technology and media conglomerate in Japan. It is also recognized as the most cash-rich Japanese company, with net cash reserves of ¥2 trillion. Sony, with its 55 percent market share in the
image sensor An image sensor or imager is a sensor that detects and conveys information used to make an image An image is a visual representation of something. It can be two-dimensional, three-dimensional, or somehow otherwise feed into the visual s ...
market, is the largest manufacturer of image sensors, the second largest camera manufacturer, and is among the semiconductor sales leaders. It is the world's largest player in the premium TV market for a television of at least with a price higher than $2,500 as well as second largest TV brand by market share and, as of 2020, the third largest television manufacturer in the world by annual sales figures. Sony Group Corporation is the
holding company A holding company is a company whose primary business is holding a controlling interest in the securities of other companies. A holding company usually does not produce goods or services itself. Its purpose is to own shares of other companies ...
of the , which comprises Sony Corporation, Sony Semiconductor Solutions,
Sony Entertainment Sony Entertainment, Inc. is an American entertainment company established in 2012. It focuses on most of Sony , commonly stylized as SONY, is a Japanese Multinational corporation, multinational conglomerate (company), conglomerate corp ...
(
Sony Pictures Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. (commonly known as Sony Pictures or SPE, and formerly known as Columbia Pictures Entertainment, Inc.) is an American diversified multinational mass media and entertainment studio Conglomerate (company), conglom ...
,
Sony Music Sony Music Entertainment (SME), also known as simply Sony Music, is an American multinational Music industry, music company. Being owned by the parent conglomerate (company), conglomerate Sony, Sony Group Corporation, it is part of the Sony Musi ...
),
Sony Interactive Entertainment Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE), formerly known as Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE), is a multinational video game industry, video game and digital entertainment company wholly owned by multinational conglomerate Sony. The SIE Group is ma ...
, Sony Financial Group, Sony Creative Products, and others. The company's slogan is ''We are Sony''. Their former slogans were ''The One and Only'' (1979–1982), ''It's a Sony'' (1981–2005), ''like.no.other'' (2005–2009), '' make.believe'' (2009–2013), and ''Be Moved'' (2013–2021). Sony has a weak tie to the
Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group is a Japanese multinational banking and financial services institution headquartered in Yurakucho, Chiyoda, Tokyo, Japan. The group operates in retail, corporate, and investment banking segment worldwide. It provides financial products and serv ...
(SMFG)
corporate group A corporate group or group of companies is a collection of parent and subsidiary corporations that function as a single economic entity through a common source of control. These types of groups are often managed by an account manager. The concept ...
, the successor to the
Mitsui is one of the largest ''keiretsu'' in Japan and one of the largest corporate groups in the world. The major companies of the group include Mitsui & Co. (sogo shosha, general trading company), Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, Nippon Paper ...
''
keiretsu A is a set of companies with interlocking business relationships and shareholdings. In the legal sense, it is a type of informal business group that are loosely organized alliances within the social world of Japan's business community. The '' ...
''. Sony is listed on the
Tokyo Stock Exchange The , abbreviated as Tosho () or TSE/TYO, is a stock exchange located in Tokyo, Japan. It is the third largest stock exchange in the world by aggregate market capitalization of its listed companies, and the largest in Asia. It had 2,292 listed co ...
(in which it is a constituent of the
Nikkei 225 The Nikkei 225, or , more commonly called the ''Nikkei'' or the ''Nikkei index'' (), is a stock market index for the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE). It has been calculated daily by the '' Nihon Keizai Shimbun'' (''The Nikkei'') newspaper since 19 ...
and
TOPIX , commonly known as TOPIX, along with the Nikkei 225, is an important stock market index for the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE) in Japan, tracking all domestic companies of the exchange's Prime market division. It is calculated and published by the T ...
Core30 indexes) with an additional listing in the form of American depositary receipts listed in the
New York Stock Exchange The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE, nicknamed "The Big Board") is an American stock exchange in the Financial District of Lower Manhattan in New York City New York, often called New York City or NYC, is the List o ...
(traded since 1970, making it the oldest Japanese company to be listed in an American exchange), and was ranked 88th on the 2021 ''Fortune'' Global 500 list.


History


Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo

Sony began in the wake of World War II. In 1946,
Masaru Ibuka Masaru Ibuka (井深 大 ''Ibuka Masaru''; April 11, 1908 – December 19, 1997) was a Japanese electronics industrialist and co-founder of Sony, along with Akio Morita.Kirkup, James"Obituary: Masaru Ibuka,"''Independent'' (London). December 22 ...
started an electronics shop in Shirokiya, a department store building in the
Nihonbashi is a business district of Chūō, Tokyo, Japan which grew up around the bridge of the same name which has linked two sides of the Nihonbashi River at this site since the 17th century. The first wooden bridge was completed in 1603. The current ...
area of
Tokyo Tokyo (; ja, 東京, , ), officially the Tokyo Metropolis ( ja, 東京都, label=none, ), is the capital and List of cities in Japan, largest city of Japan. Formerly known as Edo, its metropolitan area () is the most populous in the world, ...
. The company started with a capital of ¥190,000 and a total of eight employees. On 7 May 1946, Ibuka was joined by
Akio Morita was a Japanese businessman and co-founder of Sony along with Masaru Ibuka. Early life Akio Morita was born in Nagoya. Morita's family was involved in sake, miso and soy sauce production in the village of Kosugaya (currently a part of Tokoname, ...
to establish a company called (Tokyo Telecommunications Engineering Corporation). The company built Japan's first
tape recorder An audio tape recorder, also known as a tape deck, tape player or tape machine or simply a tape recorder, is a sound recording and reproduction device that records and plays back sounds usually using magnetic tape for storage. In its present- ...
, called the Type-G. In 1958, the company changed its name to "Sony".


Name

When ''Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo'' was looking for a romanized name to use to market themselves, they strongly considered using their initials, TTK. The primary reason they did not is that the railway company Tokyo Kyuko was known as TTK. The company occasionally used the acronym "Totsuko" in Japan, but during his visit to the United States, Morita discovered that Americans had trouble pronouncing that name. Another early name that was tried out for a while was "Tokyo Teletech" until
Akio Morita was a Japanese businessman and co-founder of Sony along with Masaru Ibuka. Early life Akio Morita was born in Nagoya. Morita's family was involved in sake, miso and soy sauce production in the village of Kosugaya (currently a part of Tokoname, ...
discovered that there was an American company already using Teletech as a brand name. The name "Sony" was chosen for the brand as a mix of two words: one was the
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally a dialect spoken in the lower Tiber area (then known as Latium) around present-day Rome, but through ...
word "'' sonus''", which is the root of sonic and sound, and the other was "'' sonny''", a common slang term used in 1950s America to call a young boy.Sony Corporate History (Japanese)
Sony.co.jp. Retrieved 7 July 2011.
In 1950s Japan, "sonny boys" was a
loan word A loanword (also loan word or loan-word) is a word at least partly assimilated from one language (the donor language) into another language. This is in contrast to cognates, which are words in two or more languages that are similar because the ...
in Japanese, which connoted smart and presentable young men, which Sony founders
Akio Morita was a Japanese businessman and co-founder of Sony along with Masaru Ibuka. Early life Akio Morita was born in Nagoya. Morita's family was involved in sake, miso and soy sauce production in the village of Kosugaya (currently a part of Tokoname, ...
and
Masaru Ibuka Masaru Ibuka (井深 大 ''Ibuka Masaru''; April 11, 1908 – December 19, 1997) was a Japanese electronics industrialist and co-founder of Sony, along with Akio Morita.Kirkup, James"Obituary: Masaru Ibuka,"''Independent'' (London). December 22 ...
considered themselves to be. The first Sony-branded product, the TR-55
transistor radio A transistor radio is a small portable radio receiver that uses transistor-based circuitry. Following the History of the transistor, invention of the transistor in 1947—which revolutionized the field of consumer electronics by introducing smal ...
, appeared in 1955, but the company name did not change to Sony until January 1958. At the time of the change, it was extremely unusual for a Japanese company to use
Roman letters The Latin script, also known as Roman script, is an alphabetic An alphabet is a standardized set of basic written graphemes (called letter (alphabet), letters) that represent the phonemes of certain spoken languages. Not all writing sys ...
to spell its name instead of writing it in
kanji are the logographic Chinese characters taken from the Chinese family of scripts, Chinese script and used in the writing of Japanese language, Japanese. They were made a major part of the Japanese writing system during the time of Old Japanese ...
. The move was not without opposition: TTK's principal bank at the time,
Mitsui is one of the largest ''keiretsu'' in Japan and one of the largest corporate groups in the world. The major companies of the group include Mitsui & Co. (sogo shosha, general trading company), Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, Nippon Paper ...
, had strong feelings about the name. They pushed for a name such as Sony Electronic Industries, or Sony Teletech. Akio Morita was firm, however, as he did not want the company name tied to any particular industry. Eventually, both Ibuka and Mitsui Bank's chairman gave their approval.


Globalization

According to Schiffer, Sony's TR-63 radio "cracked open the U.S. market and launched the new industry of consumer microelectronics." By the mid-1950s, American teens had begun buying portable transistor radios in huge numbers, helping to propel the fledgling industry from an estimated 100,000 units in 1955 to 5 million units by the end of 1968. Sony co-founder Akio Morita founded Sony Corporation of America in 1960. In the process, he was struck by the mobility of employees between American companies, which was unheard of in Japan at that time. When he returned to Japan, he encouraged experienced, middle-aged employees of other companies to reevaluate their careers and consider joining Sony. The company filled many positions in this manner, and inspired other Japanese companies to do the same. Moreover, Sony played a major role in the development of Japan as a powerful exporter during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s,Christian, Caryl, and With Hideko Takayama and Kay Itoi in Tokyo, George Wehrfritz in Hong Kong, John Sparks and Michael Hastings in, New York. "Sony is Not Japan; the Appointment of a Foreign CEO is a Sign of how Far the Iconic Company has Fallen in the Japanese Corporate Elite." Newsweek 21 March 2005: 30-. ProQuest Research Library. Web. 26 May 2012. supplying the U.S. Military with bomb parts used in the
Vietnam War The Vietnam War (also known by #Names, other names) was a conflict in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. It was the second of the Indochina Wars and was officially fought between North Vi ...
. It also helped to significantly improve American perceptions of "made in Japan" products.Lohr, Steve. "Hard-Hit Sony Girds for a Fight in the American Electronics Market." New York Times: A.8. New York Times. 14 August 1983. Web. 26 May 2012. Known for its production quality, Sony was able to charge above-market prices for its consumer electronics and resisted lowering prices. In 1971, Masaru Ibuka handed the position of president over to his co-founder Akio Morita. Sony began a life insurance company in 1979, one of its many peripheral businesses. Amid a global recession in the early 1980s, electronics sales dropped and the company was forced to cut prices. Sony's profits fell sharply. "It's over for Sony", one analyst concluded. "The company's best days are behind it." Around that time,
Norio Ohga , otherwise spelled ''Norio Oga'' (January 29, 1930 – April 23, 2011), was the former president and chairman of Sony Corporation, credited with spurring the development of the compact disc as a commercially viable audio format. Biography Earl ...
took up the role of president. He encouraged the development of the compact disc (CD) in the 1970s and 1980s, and of the
PlayStation is a video game, video gaming brand that consists of five home video game consoles, two Handheld game console, handhelds, a Home theater PC, media center, and a smartphone, as well as an online service and multiple magazines. The brand is p ...
in the early 1990s. Ohga went on to purchase CBS Records in 1988 and
Columbia Pictures Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. is an American film production studio that is a member of the Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group, a division of Sony Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, which is one of the Major film studios, Big Five stud ...
in 1989, greatly expanding Sony's media presence. Ohga would succeed Morita as chief executive officer in 1989. Under the vision of co-founder Akio MoritaFackler, Martin. "Cutting Sony, a Corporate Octopus, Back to a Rational Size." New York Times: C.1. New York Times. 29 May 2006. Web. 27 May 2012. and his successors, the company had aggressively expanded into new businesses. Part of its motivation for doing so was the pursuit of "convergence", linking film, music and digital electronics via the Internet. This expansion proved unrewarding and unprofitable, threatening Sony's ability to charge a premium on its products as well as its brand name. In 2005,
Howard Stringer Sir Howard Stringer (born 19 February 1942) is a Welsh-American businessman. He had a 30-year career at CBS CBS Broadcasting Inc., commonly shortened to CBS, the abbreviation of its former legal name Columbia Broadcasting System, is an Ame ...
replaced
Nobuyuki Idei Nobuyuki Idei (出井 伸之, ''Idei Nobuyuki''; 22 November 1937 – 2 June 2022) was a Japanese businessman. He was chairman and group chief executive officer of Sony Corporation until 7 March 2005. He was a director of General Motors, Baidu, Y ...
as chief executive officer, marking the first time that a foreigner had run a major Japanese electronics firm. Stringer helped to reinvigorate the company's struggling media businesses, encouraging blockbusters such as ''
Spider-Man Spider-Man is a superhero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by writer-editor Stan Lee and artist Steve Ditko, he first appearance, first appeared in the anthology comic book ''Amazing Fantasy'' #15 (August ...
'' while cutting 9,000 jobs. He hoped to sell off peripheral business and focus the company again on electronics. Furthermore, he aimed to increase cooperation between business units, which he described as "silos" operating in isolation from one another. In a bid to provide a unified brand for its global operations, Sony introduced a slogan known as "make.believe" in 2009. Despite some successes, the company faced continued struggles in the mid- to late-2000s. In 2012,
Kazuo Hirai is a Japanese businessman. He is best known as the former chairman of Sony Corporation , commonly stylized as SONY, is a Japanese multinational conglomerate corporation headquartered in Minato, Tokyo, Japan. As a major technology c ...
was promoted to president and CEO, replacing Stringer. Shortly thereafter, Hirai outlined his company-wide initiative, named "One Sony" to revive Sony from years of financial losses and bureaucratic management structure, which proved difficult for former CEO Stringer to accomplish, partly due to differences in business culture and native languages between Stringer and some of Sony's Japanese divisions and subsidiaries. Hirai outlined three major areas of focus for Sony's electronics business, which include imaging technology, gaming and mobile technology, as well as a focus on reducing the major losses from the television business. In February 2014, Sony announced the sale of its Vaio PC division to a new corporation owned by investment fund Japan Industrial Partners and spinning its TV division into its own corporation as to make it more nimble to turn the unit around from past losses totaling $7.8 billion over a decade. Later that month, they announced that they would be closing 20 stores. In April, the company announced that they would be selling 9.5 million shares in
Square Enix is a Japanese Multinational corporation, multinational holding company, production enterprise and entertainment conglomerate, best known for its ''Final Fantasy'', ''Dragon Quest'', ''Star Ocean'' and ''Kingdom Hearts'' role-playing video game ...
(roughly 8.2 percent of the game company's total shares) in a deal worth approximately $48 million. In May 2014 the company announced it was forming two joint ventures with Shanghai Oriental Pearl Group to manufacture and market Sony's
PlayStation is a video game, video gaming brand that consists of five home video game consoles, two Handheld game console, handhelds, a Home theater PC, media center, and a smartphone, as well as an online service and multiple magazines. The brand is p ...
games consoles and associated software in China. In 2015, Sony purchased Toshiba's image sensor business. It was reported in December 2016 by multiple news outlets that Sony was considering restructuring its U.S. operations by merging its TV & film business, Sony Pictures Entertainment, with its gaming business, Sony Interactive Entertainment. According to the reports, such a restructuring would have placed Sony Pictures under Sony Interactive's CEO, Andrew House, though House wouldn't have taken over day-to-day operations of the film studio. According to one report, Sony was set to make a final decision on the possibility of the merger of the TV, film, & gaming businesses by the end of its fiscal year in March of the following year (2017). In 2017, Sony sold its
lithium-ion battery A lithium-ion or Li-ion battery is a type of rechargeable battery which uses the reversible Redox, reduction of lithium ions to store energy. It is the predominant battery type used in portable consumer electronics and electric vehicles. It als ...
business to Murata Manufacturing. In 2019, Sony merged its mobile, TV and camera businesses. On 1 April 2020, Sony Electronics Corporation was established as an intermediate holding company to own and oversee its electronics and IT solutions businesses. On 19 May 2020, the company announced that it would rename Sony Group Corporation as of 1 April 2021. Subsequently, Sony Electronics Corporation would be renamed to Sony Corporation. On the same day the company announced that it would turn Sony Financial Holdings (currently Sony Financial Group), of which Sony already owns 65.06% of shares, to a wholly owned subsidiary through a takeover bid. On 1 April 2021, Sony Corporation was renamed Sony Group Corporation. On the same day, Sony Mobile Communications Inc. absorbed Sony Electronics Corporation, Sony Imaging Products & Solutions Inc., and Sony Home Entertainment & Sound Products Inc. and changed its trade name to Sony Corporation.


Formats and technologies

Sony has historically been notable for creating its own in-house standards for new recording and storage technologies, instead of adopting those of other manufacturers and standards bodies, while its success in the early years owes to a smooth capitalization on the
Compact Cassette The Compact Cassette or Musicassette (MC), also commonly called the tape cassette, cassette tape, audio cassette, or simply tape or cassette, is an analog audio, analog magnetic tape recording format for Sound recording and reproduction, audio ...
standard introduced by
Philips Koninklijke Philips N.V. (), commonly shortened to Philips, is a Dutch Multinational corporation, multinational Conglomerate (company), conglomerate corporation that was founded in Eindhoven in 1891. Since 1997, it has been mostly headquartered ...
, with which Sony went on to enjoy a decades-long technological relationship in various areas. Sony (either alone or with partners) has introduced several of the most popular recording formats, including the 3.5-inch
floppy disk A floppy disk or floppy diskette (casually referred to as a floppy, or a diskette) is an obsolescent type of disk storage composed of a thin and flexible disk of a magnetic storage medium in a square or nearly square plastic enclosure lined wi ...
,
Compact Disc The compact disc (CD) is a Digital media, digital optical disc data storage format that was co-developed by Philips and Sony to store and play digital audio recordings. In August 1982, the first compact disc was manufactured. It was then rele ...
and
Blu-ray Disc The Blu-ray Disc (BD), often known simply as Blu-ray, is a Digital media, digital optical disc data storage format. It was invented and developed in 2005 and released on June 20, 2006 worldwide. It is designed to supersede the DVD format, and c ...
.


Video recording

Sony introduced
U-matic U-matic is an analogue recording Videocassette#Cassette formats, videocassette format first shown by Sony in prototype in October 1969, and introduced to the market in September 1971. It was among the first video formats to contain the vide ...
, the world's first
videocassette Videotape is magnetic tape used for storing video and usually Sound recording and reproduction, sound in addition. Information stored can be in the form of either an analog signal, analog or Digital signal (signal processing), digital signal. Vi ...
format, in 1971, but the standard was unpopular for domestic use due to the high price. The company subsequently launched the
Betamax Betamax (also known as Beta, as in its logo) is a consumer-level analog recording and Videocassette#Cassette formats, cassette format of magnetic tape for video, commonly known as a video cassette recorder. It was developed by Sony and was rele ...
format in 1975. Sony was involved in the
videotape format war Videotape is magnetic tape Magnetic tape is a medium for magnetic storage made of a thin, magnetizable coating on a long, narrow strip of plastic film. It was developed in Germany in 1928, based on the earlier magnetic wire recording fro ...
of the early 1980s, when they were marketing the
Betamax Betamax (also known as Beta, as in its logo) is a consumer-level analog recording and Videocassette#Cassette formats, cassette format of magnetic tape for video, commonly known as a video cassette recorder. It was developed by Sony and was rele ...
system for video cassette recorders against the VHS format developed by JVC. In the end, VHS gained critical mass in the marketbase and became the worldwide standard for consumer VCRs. Betamax is, for all practical purposes, an obsolete format. Sony's professional-oriented
component video Component video is an analog video signal that has been split into two or more component channels. In popular use, it refers to a type of component analog video (CAV) information that is Transmission (telecommunications), transmitted or stored ...
format called
Betacam Betacam is a family of half-inch professional videocassette Videotape is magnetic tape used for storing video and usually Sound recording and reproduction, sound in addition. Information stored can be in the form of either an analog signal, a ...
, which was derived from Betamax, was used until 2016 when Sony announced it was stopping production of all remaining 1/2-inch video tape recorders and players, including the Digital Betacam format. In 1985, Sony launched their
Handycam Handycam is a Sony , commonly stylized as SONY, is a Japanese Multinational corporation, multinational conglomerate (company), conglomerate corporation headquartered in Minato, Tokyo, Japan. As a major technology company, it operates a ...
products and the Video8 format. Video8 and the follow-on hi-band
Hi8 The 8mm video format refers informally to three related Videotape#Consumer and "prosumer" camcorders, videocassette formats. These are the original Video8 (analog recording) format and its improved successor Hi8 (analog video and analog audio but ...
format became popular in the consumer camcorder market. In 1987 Sony launched the 4 mm DAT or Digital Audio Tape as a new digital audio tape standard.


Visual display

Sony held a patent for its proprietary
Trinitron Trinitron was Sony's brand name for its line of aperture grille, aperture-grille-based Cathode-ray tube, CRTs used in television sets and computer monitors. One of the first truly innovative television systems to enter the market since the 1950s ...
until 1996. Sony introduced the Triluminos Display, the company's proprietary color reproduction enhancing technology, in 2004, featured in the world's first
LED-backlit LCD An LED-backlit LCD is a liquid-crystal display that uses LEDs for backlighting instead of traditional cold cathode#Lamps, cold cathode fluorescent (CCFL) backlighting. LED-backlit displays use the same TFT LCD (thin-film-transistor liquid-cryst ...
televisions. It was widely used in other Sony's products as well, including computer monitors, laptops, and smartphones. In 2013, Sony released a new line of televisions with an improved version of the technology, which incorporated
quantum dot Quantum dots (QDs) are semiconductor particles a few nanometres in size, having light, optical and electronics, electronic properties that differ from those of larger particles as a result of quantum mechanics. They are a central topic in nanote ...
s in the backlight system. It was the first commercial use of quantum dots. In 2012, the company revealed a prototype of an ultrafine RGB
LED A light-emitting diode (LED) is a semiconductor A semiconductor is a material which has an electrical resistivity and conductivity, electrical conductivity value falling between that of a electrical conductor, conductor, such as c ...
display, which it calls the Crystal LED Display.


Audio recording

Sony used the Compact Cassette format in many of its tape recorders and players, including the
Walkman Walkman, stylised as , is a brand of portable audio player A portable audio player is a personal mobile device that allows the user to listen to recorded sound recording, audio while mobile. Sometimes a distinction is made between a ''portabl ...
, the world's first portable music player. Sony introduced the
MiniDisc MiniDisc (MD) is an erasable Magneto-optical drive, magneto-optical disc-based data storage device, data storage format offering a capacity of 60, 74, and later, 80 minutes of digitized sound, audio. Sony announced the MiniDisc in Septembe ...
format in 1992 as an alternative to
Philips Koninklijke Philips N.V. (), commonly shortened to Philips, is a Dutch Multinational corporation, multinational Conglomerate (company), conglomerate corporation that was founded in Eindhoven in 1891. Since 1997, it has been mostly headquartered ...
DCC or
Digital Compact Cassette The Digital Compact Cassette (DCC) is a magnetic tape sound recording format introduced by Philips Koninklijke Philips N.V. (), commonly shortened to Philips, is a Dutch Multinational corporation, multinational Conglomerate (company), con ...
and as a successor to the Compact Cassette. Since the introduction of MiniDisc, Sony has attempted to promote its own audio compression technologies under the
ATRAC Adaptive Transform Acoustic Coding (ATRAC) is a family of proprietary audio codec, audio compression algorithms developed by Sony. MiniDisc was the first commercial product to incorporate ATRAC in 1992. ATRAC allowed a relatively small disc like M ...
brand, against the more widely used MP3. Until late 2004, Sony's Network Walkman line of digital portable music players did not support the MP3 standard natively. In 2004, Sony built upon the
MiniDisc MiniDisc (MD) is an erasable Magneto-optical drive, magneto-optical disc-based data storage device, data storage format offering a capacity of 60, 74, and later, 80 minutes of digitized sound, audio. Sony announced the MiniDisc in Septembe ...
format by releasing
Hi-MD Hi-MD is a Magneto-optical drive, magneto-optical disc-based data storage device, data storage format. It was a further development of the MiniDisc. With its release in later 2004,
. Hi-MD allows the playback and recording of audio on newly introduced 1 GB Hi-MD discs in addition to playback and recording on regular MiniDiscs. In addition to saving audio on the discs, Hi-MD allows the storage of computer files such as documents, videos and photos.


Audio encoding

In 1993, Sony challenged the industry standard
Dolby Digital Dolby Digital, originally synonymous with Dolby AC-3, is the name for what has now become a family of audio compression (data), audio compression technologies developed by Dolby Laboratories. Formerly named Dolby Stereo Digital until 1995 in film, ...
5.1 surround sound format with a newer and more advanced proprietary motion picture digital audio format called
SDDS is a movie theater, cinema sound system developed by Sony, in which compressed digital sound information is recorded on both outer edges of the 35mm movie film, 35 mm film release print. The system supports up to eight independent chann ...
(Sony Dynamic Digital Sound). This format employed eight channels (7.1) of audio opposed to just six used in Dolby Digital 5.1 at the time. Ultimately, SDDS has been vastly overshadowed by the preferred DTS ( Digital Theatre System) and Dolby Digital standards in the motion picture industry. SDDS was solely developed for use in the theatre circuit; Sony never intended to develop a home theatre version of SDDS. Sony and
Philips Koninklijke Philips N.V. (), commonly shortened to Philips, is a Dutch Multinational corporation, multinational Conglomerate (company), conglomerate corporation that was founded in Eindhoven in 1891. Since 1997, it has been mostly headquartered ...
jointly developed the Sony-Philips digital interface format (
S/PDIF S/PDIF (Sony/Philips Digital Interface) is a type of digital audio interface used in consumer audio equipment to output audio over relatively short distances. The signal is transmitted over either a coaxial cable (using RCA connector, RCA or B ...
) and the high-fidelity audio system SACD. The latter became entrenched in a format war with
DVD-Audio DVD-Audio (commonly abbreviated as DVD-A) is a digital audio format, format for delivering high-fidelity audio content on a DVD. DVD-Audio uses most of the storage on the disc for high-quality audio and is not intended to be a video delivery for ...
. Still, neither gained a major foothold with the general public. CDs had been preferred by consumers because of the ubiquitous presence of CD drives in consumer devices until the early 2000s when the iPod and streaming services became available. In 2015, Sony introduced LDAC, a proprietary
audio coding An audio coding format (or sometimes audio compression format) is a Content format, content representation format for storage or transmission of digital audio (such as in digital television, digital radio and in audio and video files). Examples of ...
technology which allows streaming
high-resolution audio High-resolution audio (high-definition audio or HD audio) is a term for audio files with greater than 44.1 kHz sample rate In signal processing, sampling is the reduction of a continuous-time signal to a discrete-time signal. A common ex ...
over
Bluetooth Bluetooth is a short-range wireless technology standard that is used for exchanging data between fixed and mobile devices over short distances and building personal area networks (PANs). In the most widely used mode, transmission power is limit ...
connections at up to 990 kbit/s at 32 bit/96 kHz. Sony also contributed it as part of the
Android Open Source Project Android is a mobile operating system A mobile operating system is an operating system for mobile phones, tablet computer, tablets, smartwatches, smartglasses, or other non-laptop personal computing, personal mobile computing devices. While co ...
starting from Android 8.0 "
Oreo Oreo () (stylized as OREO) is a brand of sandwich cookie consisting of two biscuits or cookie pieces with a sweet creme filling. It was introduced by Nabisco on March 6, 1912, and through a series of corporate acquisitions, mergers and splits ...
", enabling every OEM to integrate this standard into their own Android devices freely. However the ''decoder'' library is proprietary, so receiving devices require licenses. On 17 September 2019, the Japan Audio Society (JAS) certified LDAC with their Hi-Res Audio Wireless certification. Currently the only codecs with the Hi-Res Audio Wireless certification are LDAC and LHDC, another competing standard.


Optical storage

Sony demonstrated an optical digital audio disc in 1977 and soon joined hands with Philips, another major contender for the storage technology, to establish a worldwide standard. In 1983, the two company jointly announced the
Compact Disc The compact disc (CD) is a Digital media, digital optical disc data storage format that was co-developed by Philips and Sony to store and play digital audio recordings. In August 1982, the first compact disc was manufactured. It was then rele ...
(CD). In 1984, Sony launched the
Discman Discman was Sony's brand name for portable CD players. The first Discman, the Sony D-50 or D-5 (depending on region), was launched in 1984. The brand name changed to CD Walkman, initially for Japanese lineups launched between October 1997 and Ma ...
series, an expansion of the Walkman brand to portable CD players. Sony began to improve performance and capacity of the novel format. It launched write-once
optical disc In computing and optical disc recording technologies, an optical disc (OD) is a flat, usually circular disc that encodes binary data (bits) in the form of Compact disk#Physical details, pits and lands on a special material, often aluminum, ...
s (WO) and magneto-optical discs which were around 125MB size for the specific use of archival data storage, in 1986 and 1988 respectively. In the early 1990s, two high-density optical storage standards were being developed: one was the MultiMedia Compact Disc (MMCD), backed by Philips and Sony, and the other was the Super Density Disc (SD), supported by
Toshiba , commonly known as Toshiba and stylized as TOSHIBA, is a Japanese multinational corporation, multinational Conglomerate (company), conglomerate corporation headquartered in Minato, Tokyo, Minato, Tokyo, Japan. Its diversified products and serv ...
and many others. Philips and Sony abandoned their MMCD format and agreed upon Toshiba's SD format with only one modification. The unified disc format was called
DVD The DVD (common abbreviation for Digital Video Disc or Digital Versatile Disc) is a digital optical disc data storage format. It was invented and developed in 1995 and first released on November 1, 1996, in Japan. The medium can store any k ...
and was introduced in 1997. Sony was one of the leading developers of the
Blu-ray The Blu-ray Disc (BD), often known simply as Blu-ray, is a Digital media, digital optical disc data storage format. It was invented and developed in 2005 and released on June 20, 2006 worldwide. It is designed to supersede the DVD format, and c ...
optical disc format, the newest standard for disc-based content delivery. The first Blu-ray players became commercially available in 2006. The format emerged as the standard for HD media over the competing format, Toshiba's
HD DVD HD DVD (short for High Definition Digital Versatile Disc) is an obsolete high-density optical disc format for storing data and playback of high-definition video. Supported principally by Toshiba, HD DVD was envisioned to be the successor to the ...
, after a two-year-long high-definition optical disc format war. Sony's laser communication devices for
small satellite A small satellite, miniaturized satellite, or smallsat is a satellite of low mass and size, usually under . While all such satellites can be referred to as "small", different classifications are used to categorize them based on mass. Satellites ca ...
s rely on the technologies developed for the company's optical disc products.


Disk storage

In 1983, Sony introduced 90 mm micro diskettes, better known as
floppy disk A floppy disk or floppy diskette (casually referred to as a floppy, or a diskette) is an obsolescent type of disk storage composed of a thin and flexible disk of a magnetic storage medium in a square or nearly square plastic enclosure lined wi ...
s, which it had developed at a time when there were 4" floppy disks, and many variations from different companies, to replace the then on-going 5.25" floppy disks. Sony had great success and the format became dominant. 3.5" floppy disks gradually became obsolete as they were replaced by current media formats. Sony held more than a 70 percent share of the market when it decided to pull the plug on the format in 2010.


Flash memory

In 1998, Sony launched the
Memory Stick The Memory Stick is a removable flash memory, flash memory card format, originally launched by Sony in late 1998. In addition to the original Memory Stick, this family includes the Memory Stick PRO, a revision that allows greater maximum storag ...
format, the
flash memory Flash memory is an Integrated circuit, electronic Non-volatile memory, non-volatile computer memory storage medium that can be electrically erased and reprogrammed. The two main types of flash memory, NOR flash and NAND flash, are named for t ...
cards for use in Sony lines of digital cameras and portable music players. It has seen little support outside of Sony's own products, with
Secure Digital card Secure Digital, officially abbreviated as SD, is a proprietary non-volatile Non-volatile memory (NVM) or non-volatile storage is a type of computer memory that can retain stored information even after power is removed. In contrast, volatil ...
s (SD) commanding considerably greater popularity. Sony has made updates to the Memory Stick format with
Memory Stick Duo The Memory Stick is a removable flash memory card A memory card is an electronic data storage device used for storing digital information, typically using flash memory. These are commonly used in digital portable electronics, portable elect ...
and Memory Stick Micro. The company has also released
USB flash drive Universal Serial Bus (USB) is an technical standard, industry standard that establishes specifications for cables, connectors and communication protocol, protocols for connection, communication and power supply (Interface (computing), interfa ...
products, branded under the Micro Vault line.


Communication

Sony introduced
FeliCa FeliCa is a contactless Radio-frequency identification, RFID smart cards, smart card system from Sony in Japan, primarily used in electronic money cards. The name stands for ''Felicity Card''. First utilized in the Octopus card system in Hong Kong, ...
, a contactless IC card technology primarily used in
contactless payment Contactless payment systems are credit cards and debit cards, key fobs, smart cards, or other devices, including smartphones and other mobile devices, that use radio-frequency identification (RFID) or near-field communication (NFC, e.g. Samsung P ...
, as a result of the company's joint development and commercialization of
Near-Field Communication Near-field communication (NFC) is a set of Communications protocol, communication protocols that enables data communication, communication between two electronic devices over a distance of 4 cm (1 in) or less. NFC offers a low-speed co ...
(NFC) with Philips. The standard is largely offered in two forms, either chips embedded in smartphones or plastic cards with chips embedded in them. Sony plans to implement this technology in train systems across Asia. In 2019, Sony launched the ELTRES, the company's proprietary low-power wide-area wireless communication ( LPWAN) standard.


Continued research and development

In 2021, the
WIPO The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO; french: link=no, Organisation mondiale de la propriété intellectuelle (OMPI)) is one of the list of specialized agencies of the United Nations, 15 specialized agencies of the United Nation ...
’s annual review of the World Intellectual Property Indicators report ranked Sony's as ninth in the world for the number of patent applications published under the PCT System. 1,793 patent applications were published by Sony during 2020. This position is up from their previous ranking as 13th in 2019 with 1,566 applications.


Business units

Best known for its electronic products, Sony offers a wide variety of product lines in many areas. At its peak, it was dubbed as a "corporate octopus", for its sprawling ventures from private insurance to chemicals to cosmetics to home shopping to a Tokyo-based French food joint, in addition its core businesses such as electronics and entertainment. Even after it has unwound many business units including Sony Chemicals and Vaio PC, Sony still runs diverse businesses. As of 2020, Sony is organized into the following business segments: Game & Network Services (G&NS), Music, Pictures, Electronics Products & Solutions (EP&S), Imaging & Sensing Solutions (I&SS), Financial Services, and Others. Usually, each business segment has a handful of corresponding intermediate holding companies under which all the related businesses are folded into, such as
Columbia Records Columbia Records is an American record label owned by Sony Music, Sony Music Entertainment, a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, the North American division of Japanese Conglomerate (company), conglomerate Sony. It was founded on Janua ...
being part of
Sony Music Sony Music Entertainment (SME), also known as simply Sony Music, is an American multinational Music industry, music company. Being owned by the parent conglomerate (company), conglomerate Sony, Sony Group Corporation, it is part of the Sony Musi ...
Group, a subsidiary and, at the same time, a holding company for Sony's music businesses, along with SMEJ.


Electronics Products & Solutions

Sony Corporation (Sony Electronics Corporation until 1 April 2021) is the electronics business unit of the Sony Group. It primarily conducts research and development (R&D), planning, designing, manufacturing and marketing for electronics products. Sony Global Manufacturing & Operations Corporation (SGMO) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony Corporation and responsible for managing manufacturing operations both in Japan and overseas, through its own factories as well as third party contract manufacturers.


Audio

In 1979, Sony released the world's first portable music player, the
Walkman Walkman, stylised as , is a brand of portable audio player A portable audio player is a personal mobile device that allows the user to listen to recorded sound recording, audio while mobile. Sometimes a distinction is made between a ''portabl ...
, bundled with the MDL-3L2
headphones Headphones are a pair of small Electrodynamic speaker driver, loudspeaker drivers worn on or around the head over a user's ears. They are electroacoustics (acoustical engineering), electroacoustic transducers, which convert an electrical signa ...
. This line fostered a fundamental change in music listening habits by allowing people to carry music with them and listen to music through lightweight headphones. Originally used to refer to portable audio cassette players, the Walkman brand has been widely adopted by the company to encompass its portable digital audio and video players as well as a line of former
Sony Ericsson Sony Mobile Communications Inc. ( ja, ソニーモバイルコミュニケーションズ株式会社) was a Multinational corporation, multinational telecommunications company founded on October 1, 2001, as a joint venture between Sony, Sony G ...
mobile phones. In the case of optical disc players, the
Discman Discman was Sony's brand name for portable CD players. The first Discman, the Sony D-50 or D-5 (depending on region), was launched in 1984. The brand name changed to CD Walkman, initially for Japanese lineups launched between October 1997 and Ma ...
brand was used until the late 1990s. In 1999 Sony's first portable digital audio players were introduced; one was a player using
Memory Stick The Memory Stick is a removable flash memory, flash memory card format, originally launched by Sony in late 1998. In addition to the original Memory Stick, this family includes the Memory Stick PRO, a revision that allows greater maximum storag ...
flash storage created by the Walkman division, and the other was a smaller pen-sized player with embedded flash storage created by the Vaio division; both accompanied with Sony's
OpenMG OpenMG is a digital rights management Digital rights management (DRM) is the management of legal access to digital content. Various tools or technological protection measures (TPM) such as access control technologies can restrict the use of pro ...
copyright protection technology and PC software for music transfer. Sony continue to develop Walkman
digital audio player A portable media player (PMP) (also including the related digital audio player (DAP)) is a portable consumer electronics device capable of storing and playing digital media such as audio, images, and video files. The data is typically stored o ...
s. Sony is a major audio products manufacturer and one of the
active noise control Active noise control (ANC), also known as noise cancellation (NC), or active noise reduction (ANR), is a method for reducing unwanted sound by the addition of a second sound specifically designed to cancel the first. The concept was first develop ...
technology leaders.


Video

Sony produced the
TV8-301 The TV8-301 was a small black and white television made by Sony. It is notable for being the world's first non-Projection TV, projection type all-transistor television. It had an eight-inch Television screen, screen. It was also portable, having a b ...
, the world's first all-
transistor file:MOSFET Structure.png, upright=1.4, Metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), showing Metal gate, gate (G), body (B), source (S) and drain (D) terminals. The gate is separated from the body by an insulating layer (pink). A ...
television, in 1959. In 1968, the company introduced the
Trinitron Trinitron was Sony's brand name for its line of aperture grille, aperture-grille-based Cathode-ray tube, CRTs used in television sets and computer monitors. One of the first truly innovative television systems to enter the market since the 1950s ...
brand name for its lines of
aperture grille An aperture grille is one of two major technologies used to manufacture color cathode-ray tube (CRT) televisions and computer displays; the other is the shadow mask. Fine vertical wires behind the front glass of the display screen separate t ...
cathode ray tube A cathode-ray tube (CRT) is a vacuum tube containing one or more electron guns, which emit electron beams that are manipulated to display images on a Phosphorescence, phosphorescent screen. The images may represent electrical waveforms (osci ...
televisions and afterwards
computer monitors A computer monitor is an output device An output device is any piece of computer hardware equipment which converts information into a human-perceptible form or, historically, into a physical machine-readable form for use with other non-comput ...
. Sony stopped production of Trinitron for most markets, but continued producing sets for markets such as Pakistan, Bangladesh and China. Sony discontinued its series of Trinitron computer monitors in 2005. The company discontinued the last Trinitron-based television set in the US in early 2007. The end of Trinitron marked the end of Sony's analog television sets and monitors. Sony used the LCD WEGA name for its
LCD A liquid-crystal display (LCD) is a flat panel display, flat-panel display or other Electro-optic modulator, electronically modulated optical device that uses the light-modulating properties of liquid crystals combined with polarizers. Liqui ...
TVs until summer 2005. The company then introduced the
BRAVIA Bravia (stylized as BRAVIA) is a brand of Sony Visual Products Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Sony Corporation , commonly stylized as SONY, is a Japanese multinational conglomerate corporation headquartered in Minato, Tokyo, Jap ...
name. BRAVIA is an in-house brand owned by Sony which produces high-definition LCD televisions, projection TVs and front projectors, home cinemas and the BRAVIA home theatre range. All Sony high-definition flat-panel LCD televisions in North America have carried the logo for BRAVIA since 2005. In 2006, Sony lost its decades-long No.1 market share in the global television market. In November 2007, the Sony XEL-1, the first
OLED An organic light-emitting diode (OLED or organic LED), also known as organic electroluminescent (organic EL) diode, is a light-emitting diode (LED) in which the emission (electromagnetic radiation), emissive electroluminescence, electroluminesc ...
television, was released and manufactured for two years. Later in 2013, Sony demonstrated the first 4K OLED television. As of 2012, Sony was the third-largest maker of televisions in the world and the business unit had been unprofitable for eight consecutive years. From 2011, Sony started restructuring of its loss-making television business, mainly by downsizing business units and outsourcing the manufacturing of display panels to the companies like
Sharp Corporation is a Japanese multinational corporation that designs and manufactures electronics, electronic products, headquartered in Sakai-ku, Sakai, Sakai-ku, Sakai, Osaka Prefecture. Since 2016 it has been majority owned by the Taiwan-based Foxconn Grou ...
,
LG Display LG Display (Korean language, Korean: LG 디스플레이) is one of the world's largest manufacturers and supplier of thin-film transistor liquid crystal display (TFT-LCD) panels, OLEDs and flexible displays. LG Display is headquartered in Seou ...
, and
Samsung Electronics Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (, sometimes shortened to SEC and stylized as SΛMSUNG) is a South Korean multinational corporation, multinational electronics corporation headquartered in Yeongtong-gu, Suwon, South Korea. It is the pinnacle of ...
. In December 2011, Sony agreed to sell all stake in an LCD joint venture with Samsung Electronics ( S-LCD) for about $940 million. On 28 March 2012, Sony and Sharp announced that they have agreed to further amend the joint venture agreement originally executed by the parties in July 2009, as amended in April 2011, for the establishment and operation of Sharp Display Products Corporation ("SDP"), a joint venture to produce and sell large-sized LCD panels and modules. The agreement was eventually terminated as Sony parted ways. Sony's small-sized LCD business subsidiary and medium-to-large-sized OLED display business unit were spun off and became part of Japan Display and JOLED, respectively. In 2017, Sony launched OLED televisions under the BRAVIA brand. Also, Sony has sold a range of tapes, discs, recorders and players for
videocassette Videotape is magnetic tape used for storing video and usually Sound recording and reproduction, sound in addition. Information stored can be in the form of either an analog signal, analog or Digital signal (signal processing), digital signal. Vi ...
,
DVD The DVD (common abbreviation for Digital Video Disc or Digital Versatile Disc) is a digital optical disc data storage format. It was invented and developed in 1995 and first released on November 1, 1996, in Japan. The medium can store any k ...
, and
Blu-ray The Blu-ray Disc (BD), often known simply as Blu-ray, is a Digital media, digital optical disc data storage format. It was invented and developed in 2005 and released on June 20, 2006 worldwide. It is designed to supersede the DVD format, and c ...
formats for decades.


Photography and videography

Sony offers a wide range of digital cameras. Its point-and-shoot models are branded
Cyber-shot Cyber-shot is Sony's line of point-and-shoot camera, point-and-shoot digital cameras introduced in 1996. Cyber-shot model names use a DSC prefix, which is an initialism for "Digital Still Camera". Many Cyber-shot models feature Carl Zeiss AG, Ca ...
, while DSLRs and mirrorless models are branded
Alpha Alpha (uppercase , lowercase ; grc, ἄλφα, ', or ell, άλφα, álfa) is the first Letter (alphabet), letter of the Greek alphabet. In the system of Greek numerals, it has a value of one. Alpha is derived from the Phoenician alphabet, P ...
, though Sony no longer makes DSLRs. It also produces action cameras and
camcorders A camcorder is a self-contained portable electronic device with video and recording as its primary function. It is typically equipped with an articulating screen mounted on the left side, a belt to facilitate holding on the right side, hot-sw ...
, with the company's cinema-grade products being sold under the
CineAlta CineAlta cameras are a series of professional digital movie cameras produced by Sony that replicate many of the same features of 35 mm movie film, 35mm film Movie camera, motion picture cameras. Concept CineAlta is a brand name used by Sony t ...
name. Sony demonstrated a prototype of the
Sony Mavica Mavica (''Magnetic Video Camera'') is a discontinued brand of Sony cameras which use removable disks as the main recording medium. On August 25th 1981, Sony unveiled a prototype of the Sony Mavica as the world's first electronic still video cam ...
in 1981 and released it for the consumer market in 1988. The first Cyber-shot was introduced in 1996. Sony's market share of the digital camera market fell from a high of 20% to 9% by 2005.Nakamoto, Michiyo. "Screen Test: Stringers Strategy Will Signal to what Extent Sony can Stay in the Game CONSUMER ELECTRONICS: The Japanese Company that Once Brought the World Market-Defining Products is being Trounced by More Agile Competitors and must Decide which Activities no Longer Form Part of its Future, Writes Michiyo Nakamoto." Financial Times: 17. ABI/INFORM Global. 21 September 2005. Web. 27 May 2012. Sony entered the market for
digital single-lens reflex camera A digital single-lens reflex camera (digital SLR or DSLR) is a digital camera that combines the optics and the mechanisms of a single-lens reflex camera with a image sensor, digital imaging sensor. The reflex design scheme is the primary differe ...
s in 2006 when it acquired the camera business of
Konica Minolta is a Japanese multinational corporation, multinational technology company headquartered in Marunouchi, Chiyoda, Tokyo, Chiyoda, Tokyo, with offices in 49 countries worldwide. The company manufactures business and industrial imaging products, in ...
. Sony rebranded the company's line of cameras as its
Alpha Alpha (uppercase , lowercase ; grc, ἄλφα, ', or ell, άλφα, álfa) is the first Letter (alphabet), letter of the Greek alphabet. In the system of Greek numerals, it has a value of one. Alpha is derived from the Phoenician alphabet, P ...
line. Sony is the world's third largest manufacturer of the cameras, behind
Canon Canon or Canons may refer to: Arts and entertainment * Canon (fiction), the conceptual material accepted as official in a fictional universe by its fan base * Literary canon, an accepted body of works considered as high culture ** Western can ...
and
Nikon (, ; ), also known just as Nikon, is a Japanese multinational corporation headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, specializing in optics and Photography, imaging products. The companies held by Nikon form the Nikon Group. Nikon's products include cam ...
respectively. In 2010, Sony introduced their first
mirrorless interchangeable-lens camera A mirrorless camera is a photo camera featuring a single, removable lens and a digital display. The camera does not have a reflex mirror or optical viewfinder like a digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera, but may have an electronic vie ...
s, which were the NEX-3 and the NEX-5. They also started a new lens mount system, which was the E-mount. There were quite a few NEX models out there, when Sony decided to melt the NEX series into the Alpha series. The first Alpha MILC was the α3000, which was introduced in August 2013. It was followed by the Full-Frame α7 and α7R in October, then the successors of the NEX-5, the NEX-6 and NEX-7, the α5000 and the α6000 in 2014. The α6000 became the most popular
MILC A mirrorless camera is a photo camera featuring a single, removable lens and a digital display. The camera does not have a reflex mirror or optical viewfinder like a digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera, but may have an electronic vie ...
ever and Sony became the largest MILC manufacturer.


Computing

Sony produced computers (
MSX MSX is a standardized home computer architecture, announced by Microsoft and ASCII Corporation on June 16, 1983. It was initially conceived by Microsoft as a product for the Eastern sector, and jointly marketed by Kazuhiko Nishi, then vice-pr ...
home computers and
NEWS News is information about current events. This may be provided through many different Media (communication), media: word of mouth, printing, Mail, postal systems, broadcasting, Telecommunications, electronic communication, or through the tes ...
workstation A workstation is a special computer designed for technical or computational science, scientific applications. Intended primarily to be used by a single user, they are commonly connected to a local area network and run multi-user operating syste ...
s) during the 1980s. The company withdrew from the computer business around 1990. Sony entered again into the global computer market under the new VAIO brand, began in 1996. Short for "Video Audio Integrated Operation", the line was the first computer brand to highlight visual-audio features. Sony faced considerable controversy when some of its laptop batteries exploded and caught fire in 2006, resulting in the largest computer-related recall to that point in history. In a bid to join the
tablet computer A tablet computer, commonly shortened to tablet, is a mobile device, typically with a mobile operating system and touchscreen display processing circuitry, and a rechargeable battery in a single, thin and flat package. Tablets, being comput ...
market, the company launched its Sony Tablet line of Android tablets in 2011. Since 2012, Sony's Android products have been marketed under the
Xperia Xperia () is the brand name of smartphones and tablet computer, tablets from Sony. The name Xperia is derived from the word "experience", and was first used in the Sony Ericsson Xperia X1, Xperia X1 tagline of "I Xperia the best". Sony Mobile ...
brand used for its smartphones. On 4 February 2014, Sony announced that it would sell its VAIO PC business due to poor sales and Japanese company Japan Industrial Partners (JIP) will purchase the VAIO brand, with the deal finalized by the end of March 2014. As of 2018, Sony maintained a 5% stake in the new, independent company.


Healthcare and biotechnology

Sony has targeted medical, healthcare and biotechnology business as a growth sector in the future. The company acquired iCyt Mission Technology, Inc. (renamed Sony Biotechnology Inc. in 2012), a manufacturer of flow cytometers, in 2010 and Micronics, Inc., a developer of microfluidics-based diagnostic tools, in 2011. In 2012, Sony announced that it would acquire all shares of
So-net is a Japanese internet service provider An Internet service provider (ISP) is an organization that provides services for accessing, using, or participating in the Internet. ISPs can be organized in various forms, such as commercial, commun ...
Entertainment Corporation, the largest shareholder of M3, Inc., an operator of portal sites (m3.com, MR-kun, MDLinx and MEDI:GATE) for healthcare professionals. On 28 September 2012, Olympus and Sony announced that the two companies will establish a joint venture to develop new surgical endoscopes with
4K resolution 4K resolution refers to a horizontal display resolution of approximately 4,000 pixel In digital imaging, a pixel (abbreviated px), pel, or picture element is the smallest addressable element in a Raster graphics, raster image, or the smalles ...
(or higher) and 3D capability. Sony Olympus Medical Solutions Inc. (Sony 51%, Olympus 49%) was established on 16 April 2013. On 28 February 2014, Sony, M3 and Illumina established a joint venture called P5, Inc. to provide a genome analysis service for research institutions and enterprises in Japan.


Mobility

In 2000, Sony was a marginal player in the mobile phone market with a share of less than 1 percent. In 2001, Sony entered into a joint venture with Swedish telecommunications company
Ericsson (lit. "Telephone Stock Company of LM Ericsson"), commonly known as Ericsson, is a Sweden, Swedish multinational networking and telecommunications company headquartered in Stockholm. The company sells infrastructure, software, and services in ...
, forming Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications. Initial sales were rocky, and the company posted losses in 2001 and 2002. However, Sony Ericsson reached a profit in 2003. The company distinguished itself with multimedia-capable mobile phones, which included features such as cameras. These were unusual at the time. Despite their innovations, Sony Ericsson faced intense competition from
Apple An apple is an edible fruit produced by an apple tree (''Malus domestica''). Apple fruit tree, trees are agriculture, cultivated worldwide and are the most widely grown species in the genus ''Malus''. The tree originated in Central Asia, wh ...
's iPhone, which was released in 2007. From 2008 to 2010, amid a global recession, Sony Ericsson slashed its workforce by several thousand. In 2009, Sony Ericsson was the fourth-largest mobile phone manufacturer in the world (after
Nokia Nokia Corporation (natively Nokia Oyj, referred to as Nokia) is a Finnish multinational corporation, multinational telecommunications industry, telecommunications, technology company, information technology, and consumer electronics corporatio ...
,
Samsung The Samsung Group (or simply Samsung) ( ko, 삼성 ) is a South Korean Multinational corporation, multinational manufacturing Conglomerate (company), conglomerate headquartered in Samsung Town, Seoul, South Korea. It comprises numerous affi ...
and LG). By 2010, its market share had fallen to sixth place. Sony acquired Ericsson's share of the venture in 2012 for over US$1 billion.
Sony Mobile Sony Mobile Communications Inc. ( ja, ソニーモバイルコミュニケーションズ株式会社) was a multinational telecommunication Telecommunication is the transmission of information by various types of technologies over wire, ...
focuses exclusively on the smartphone market under the
Xperia Xperia () is the brand name of smartphones and tablet computer, tablets from Sony. The name Xperia is derived from the word "experience", and was first used in the Sony Ericsson Xperia X1, Xperia X1 tagline of "I Xperia the best". Sony Mobile ...
brand. In 2013, Sony contributed to around two percent of the mobile phone market with 37 million mobile phones sold. Sony Mobile's sales reached a peak in 2014 with 40 million handsets, the volume has since decreased. Sony shipped 13.5 million phones in 2017, 6.5 million in 2018, and 2.9 million handsets in FY 2020.


Robotics

Since the late 1990s, Sony has released numerous consumer robots, including dog-shaped robots called
AIBO AIBO (''stylized aibo, Artificial Intelligence Robot'', homonymous with , "pal" or "partner" in Japanese) is a series of robotic dogs designed and manufactured by Sony. Sony announced a prototype Aibo in mid-1998, and the first consumer model wa ...
, a music playing robot called Rolly, and a
humanoid A humanoid (; from English ''human'' and ''wikt:-oid#Suffix, -oid'' "resembling") is a non-human entity with human form or characteristics. The earliest recorded use of the term, in 1870, referred to indigenous peoples in areas colonized by Eur ...
robot called QRIO. Despite being a pioneer in the field, Sony had ceased robotics-related operations for 10 years due to financial difficulties, until it decided to revive them in 2016. In 2015, Sony partnered with an autonomous driving startup ZMP INC. to establish an aerial surveillance and reconnaissance drone manufacturer named Aerosense. At the CES 2021, Sony unveiled a drone with the brand Airpeak, the smallest of its kind that can incorporate a Sony Alpha camera according to the company, entering the drone business on its own for the first time.


Imaging & Sensing Solutions

Sony traces its roots in the semiconductor business back to 1954, when it became the first Japanese company to commercialize the
transistor file:MOSFET Structure.png, upright=1.4, Metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), showing Metal gate, gate (G), body (B), source (S) and drain (D) terminals. The gate is separated from the body by an insulating layer (pink). A ...
, invented and licensed by
Bell Labs Nokia Bell Labs, originally named Bell Telephone Laboratories (1925–1984), then AT&T Bell Laboratories (1984–1996) and Bell Labs Innovations (1996–2007), is an American industrial research and scientific development company A com ...
, whilst some of the biggest and well-established names in Japan at the time like
Toshiba , commonly known as Toshiba and stylized as TOSHIBA, is a Japanese multinational corporation, multinational Conglomerate (company), conglomerate corporation headquartered in Minato, Tokyo, Minato, Tokyo, Japan. Its diversified products and serv ...
and
Mitsubishi Electric , established on 15 January 1921, is a Japanese Multinational corporation, multinational electronics and electrical equipment manufacturing company headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. It is one of the core companies of Mitsubishi. The products from ...
initially stuck with
vacuum tube A vacuum tube, electron tube, valve (British usage), or tube (North America), is a device that controls electric current flow in a high vacuum between electrodes to which an electric voltage, potential difference has been applied. The type kn ...
s they had been thriving on; despite being an expert on the vacuum tube himself, Ibuka saw potential of the novel technology and had Morita negotiate the terms for licensing, making Sony into one of the earliest and the youngest licensees of the transistor, together with
Texas Instruments Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) is an American technology company headquartered in Dallas, Texas, that designs and manufactures semiconductors and various integrated circuits, which it sells to electronics designers and manufacturers globall ...
. In 1957, Sony employee
Leo Esaki Reona Esaki (江崎 玲於奈 ''Esaki Reona'', born March 12, 1925), also known as Leo Esaki, is a Japanese physicist who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics ) , image = Nobel Prize.png , alt = A golden medallion with an embosse ...
and his colleagues invented a
tunnel diode A tunnel diode or Esaki diode is a type of semiconductor diode that has effectively "negative resistance" due to the quantum mechanics, quantum mechanical effect called quantum tunneling, tunneling. It was invented in August 1957 by Leo Esa ...
(usually referred to as Esaki diode) by which they discovered the
quantum tunneling In physics, a quantum (plural quanta) is the minimum amount of any physical entity (physical property) involved in an fundamental interaction, interaction. The fundamental notion that a physical property can be "quantized" is referred to as "the ...
effect in solids, for which Esaki received the
Nobel prize in Physics ) , image = Nobel Prize.png , alt = A golden medallion with an embossed image of a bearded man facing left in profile. To the left of the man is the text "ALFR•" then "NOBEL", and on the right, the text (smaller) "NAT•" then " ...
in 1973. Sony has commanded a dominant share in the
charge-coupled device A charge-coupled device (CCD) is an integrated circuit containing an array of linked, or coupled, capacitors. Under the control of an external circuit, each capacitor can transfer its electric charge to a neighboring capacitor. CCD sensors are a ...
market. As of 2020, Sony is the world's largest manufacturer of
CMOS image sensor An active-pixel sensor (APS) is an image sensor An image sensor or imager is a sensor that detects and conveys information used to make an image An image is a visual representation of something. It can be two-dimensional, three-dimensi ...
s as its chips are widely used in digital cameras, tablet computers, smartphones, drones and more recently, self-driving systems in automobiles. As of 2020, the company, through its chip business arm Sony Semiconductor Solutions, designs, manufactures, and sells a wide range of
semiconductor A semiconductor is a material which has an electrical resistivity and conductivity, electrical conductivity value falling between that of a electrical conductor, conductor, such as copper, and an insulator (electricity), insulator, such as glas ...
s and electronic components, including image sensors ( HAD CCD,
Exmor Exmor is the name of a technology Sony implemented on some of their CMOS sensor, CMOS image sensors. It performs on-chip Analog-to-digital converter, analog/digital signal conversion and two-step noise reduction in parallel on each column of t ...
), image processors ( BIONZ),
laser diode file:Laser diode chip.jpg, The laser diode chip removed and placed on the eye of a needle for scale A laser diode (LD, also injection laser diode or ILD, or diode laser) is a semiconductor device similar to a light-emitting diode in which a di ...
s, system LSIs, mixed-signal LSIs, emerging memory storage, emerging displays (
microLED microLED, also known as micro-LED, mLED or µLED, first invented in 2000 by the research group of Hongxing Jiang and Jingyu Lin of Texas Tech University Texas Tech University (Texas Tech, Tech, or TTU) is a public university, public resear ...
, microOLED, and
holographic display A holographic display is a type of 3D display that utilizes light diffraction to display a three-dimensional image to the viewer. Holographic displays are distinguished from other forms of 3D displays in that they do not require the viewer to wear a ...
), multi-functional
microcomputer A microcomputer is a small, relatively inexpensive computer having a central processing unit (CPU) made out of a microprocessor. The computer also includes Computer memory, memory and input/output (I/O) circuitry together mounted on a printed ...
(''SPRESENSE''), etc. In 2020, Sony has launched the first intelligent vision sensors with AI edge computing capabilies.


Game & Network Services

Sony Interactive Entertainment (formerly Sony Computer Entertainment) is best known for producing the popular line of
PlayStation is a video game, video gaming brand that consists of five home video game consoles, two Handheld game console, handhelds, a Home theater PC, media center, and a smartphone, as well as an online service and multiple magazines. The brand is p ...
consoles. The line grew out of a failed partnership with
Nintendo is a Japanese Multinational corporation, multinational video game company headquartered in Kyoto, Japan. It develops video games and video game consoles. Nintendo was founded in 1889 as by craftsman Fusajiro Yamauchi and originally produce ...
. Originally, Nintendo requested Sony to develop an add-on for its SNES that would play Compact Discs. In 1991 Sony announced the add-on, as well as a dedicated console known as the "Play Station". However, a disagreement over software licensing for the console caused the partnership to fall through. Sony then continued the project independently. Launched in 1994, the first PlayStation gained 61% of global console sales and broke Nintendo's long-standing lead in the market."The PlayStation Quest." Macleans 6 November 2000: 81-. ABI/INFORM Global; ProQuest Research Library. Web. 27 May 2012. Sony followed up with the
PlayStation 2 The PlayStation 2 (PS2) is a home video game console developed and marketed by Sony Computer Entertainment. It was first released in Japan on 4 March 2000, in North America on 26 October 2000, in Europe on 24 November 2000, and in Australia on 3 ...
in 2000, which was even more successful. The console has become the most successful of all time, selling over 150 million units . Sony released the
PlayStation 3 The PlayStation 3 (PS3) is a home video game console developed by Sony Interactive Entertainment, Sony Computer Entertainment. The successor to the PlayStation 2, it is part of the PlayStation brand of consoles. It was first released on Novemb ...
, a high-definition console, in 2006. It was the first console to use the
Blu-ray The Blu-ray Disc (BD), often known simply as Blu-ray, is a Digital media, digital optical disc data storage format. It was invented and developed in 2005 and released on June 20, 2006 worldwide. It is designed to supersede the DVD format, and c ...
format, and was considerably more expensive than the competitors
Xbox 360 The Xbox 360 is a home video game console developed by Microsoft. As the successor to the Xbox (console), original Xbox, it is the second console in the Xbox series. It competed with Sony Interactive Entertainment, Sony's PlayStation 3 and Nin ...
and
Wii The Wii ( ) is a home video game console A home video game console is a video game console that is designed to be connected to a display device, such as a television, and an external power source as to play video games. Home consoles ...
due to the Cell processor. Early on, poor sales performance resulted in significant losses for the company, pushing it to sell the console at a
loss Loss may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Music *Loss (Bass Communion album), ''Loss'' (Bass Communion album) (2006) *Loss (Mull Historical Society album), ''Loss'' (Mull Historical Society album) (2001) *"Loss", a song by God Is an Astro ...
.Pilling, David. "Camera Sales Raise Sonys Game." Financial Times: 23. ABI/INFORM Global. 27 July 2007. Web. 27 May 2012. The PlayStation 3 sold generally more poorly than its competitors in the early years of its release but managed to overtake the Xbox 360 in global sales later on. It later introduced the
PlayStation Move is a Motion controller, motion game controller developed by Sony Interactive Entertainment. Initially released in 2010 for use with the PlayStation 3 home video game console, its compatibility was later expanded to its successor, the PlayStation ...
, an accessory that allows players to control video games using motion gestures. Sony extended the brand to the portable games market in 2004 with the
PlayStation Portable The PlayStation Portable (PSP) is a handheld game console A handheld game console, or simply handheld console, is a small, portable self-contained video game console with a built-in screen, game controls and speakers. Handheld game console ...
(PSP). The console has sold reasonably, but has taken a second place to a rival handheld, the
Nintendo DS The is a handheld game console produced by Nintendo, released globally across 2004 and 2005. The DS, an initialism for "Developers' System" or "Dual Screen", introduced distinctive new features to handheld games: two LCD screens working in ...
. Sony developed the
Universal Media Disc The Universal Media Disc (UMD) is a discontinued optical disc medium developed by Sony for use on its PlayStation Portable handheld video game, gaming and multimedia platform. It can hold up to 1.8 gigabytes of data and is capable of storing vi ...
(UMD) optical disc medium for use on the PlayStation Portable. Early on, the format was used for movies, but it has since lost major studio support. Sony released a disc-less version of its PlayStation Portable, the PSP Go, in 2009. The company went on to release its second portable video game system,
PlayStation Vita The PlayStation Vita (PS Vita, or Vita) is a handheld video game console developed and marketed by Sony Interactive Entertainment. It was first released in Japan on December 17, 2011, and in North America, Europe, and other international territo ...
, in 2011 and 2012. Sony launched its fourth console, the
PlayStation 4 The PlayStation 4 (PS4) is a home video game console developed by Sony Interactive Entertainment. Announced as the successor to the PlayStation 3 in February 2013, it was launched on November 15, 2013, in North America, November 29, 2013 in E ...
, on 15 November 2013, which as of 31 December 2017 has sold 73.6 million units globally. On 18 March 2014, at GDC, president of SCE Worldwide Studios
Shuhei Yoshida is a Japanese businessman and gaming industry veteran. He was the President of SIE Worldwide Studios for Sony Interactive Entertainment Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE), formerly known as Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE), is a multi ...
announced their new virtual reality technology dubbed Project Morpheus, and later named
PlayStation VR The PlayStation VR (PS VR, known by its code name A code name, call sign or cryptonym is a Code word (figure of speech), code word or name used, sometimes clandestinely, to refer to another name, word, project, or person. Code names are often ...
, for PlayStation 4. The headset brought VR gaming and non-gaming software to the company's console. According to a report released by Houston-based patent consulting firm LexInnova in May 2015, Sony is leading the virtual reality patent race. According to the firm's analysis of nearly 12,000 patents or patent applications, Sony has 366 virtual reality patents or patent applications. PlayStation VR was released worldwide on 13 October 2016. On 31 March 2019, the successor to the PlayStation 4 was announced and on 12 November 2020, the
PlayStation 5 The PlayStation 5 (PS5) is a home video game console developed by Sony Interactive Entertainment. Announced as the successor to the PlayStation 4 in April 2019, it was launched on November 12, 2020, in Australia, Japan, New Zealand, North Ame ...
was released in North America, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, and Singapore. The console was launched in Indonesia on 22 January 2021. Upon completion of the fiscal quarter, Sony sold 4.5 million
PlayStation 5 The PlayStation 5 (PS5) is a home video game console developed by Sony Interactive Entertainment. Announced as the successor to the PlayStation 4 in April 2019, it was launched on November 12, 2020, in Australia, Japan, New Zealand, North Ame ...
consoles, keeping pace with the best selling console of all time, the PlayStation 2.


Pictures and Music

Sony Entertainment Sony Entertainment, Inc. is an American entertainment company established in 2012. It focuses on most of Sony , commonly stylized as SONY, is a Japanese Multinational corporation, multinational conglomerate (company), conglomerate corp ...
has two divisions:
Sony Pictures Entertainment Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. (commonly known as Sony Pictures or SPE, and formerly known as Columbia Pictures Entertainment, Inc.) is an American diversified multinational mass media and entertainment studio conglomerate that produces, ac ...
, Sony Music Group (
Sony Music Entertainment Sony Music Entertainment (SME), also known as simply Sony Music, is an American multinational Music industry, music company. Being owned by the parent conglomerate (company), conglomerate Sony, Sony Group Corporation, it is part of the Sony Musi ...
,
Sony Music Publishing Sony Music Publishing (formerly Sony/ATV Music Publishing) is the largest Music publisher (popular music), music publisher in the world, with over five million songs owned or administered as of end March 2021. US-based, it is part of the Sony Mu ...
). Sony USA previously owned and operated Sony Trans Com: a technology business that provided in-flight entertainment programming as well as video and audio playback equipment for the airline industry. Sony had purchased the business from Sundstrand Corp. in 1989 and subsequently sold it to
Rockwell Collins Rockwell Collins was a multinational corporation A multinational company (MNC), also referred to as a multinational enterprise (MNE), a transnational enterprise (TNE), a transnational corporation (TNC), an international corporation or a statele ...
in 2000. In 2012, Sony rolled most of its consumer content services (including video, music and gaming) into the
Sony Entertainment Network Sony Entertainment Network (SEN) was a digital media delivery service operated by Sony. SEN provided access to services, including PlayStation Network for games, Video Unlimited for film and television, Music Unlimited for music, and PlayMemorie ...
, the predecessor of
PlayStation Network PlayStation Network (PSN) is a digital media entertainment service provided by Sony Interactive Entertainment. Launched in November 2006, PSN was originally conceived for the PlayStation video game consoles, but soon extended to encompass smartp ...
.


Sony Pictures Entertainment

Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. (SPE) is the television and film production/distribution unit of Sony. With 12.5% box office market share in 2011, the company was ranked third among movie studios. Its group sales in 2010 were US$7.2 billion.Business Overview, Annual Report 2010
(PDF). . Retrieved 7 July 2011.

sonypictures.com
The company has produced many notable movie franchises, including ''
Spider-Man Spider-Man is a superhero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by writer-editor Stan Lee and artist Steve Ditko, he first appearance, first appeared in the anthology comic book ''Amazing Fantasy'' #15 (August ...
'', ''
The Karate Kid ''The Karate Kid'' is a 1984 American martial arts Martial arts are codified systems and traditions of combat practiced for a number of reasons such as self-defense; military and law enforcement applications; combat sport, competition; phys ...
'' and ''
Men in Black In popular culture and UFO conspiracy theory, UFO conspiracy theories, men in black (MIB) are purported men dressed in Suit (clothing), black suits who claim to be quasi-Special agent, government agents, who harass, threaten, or sometimes even as ...
''. It has also produced the popular television game shows ''
Jeopardy! ''Jeopardy!'' is an American game show created by Merv Griffin. The show is a quiz competition that reverses the traditional question-and-answer format of many quiz shows. Rather than being given questions, contestants are instead given genera ...
'' and '' Wheel of Fortune''. Sony entered the television and film production market when it acquired Columbia Pictures Entertainment in 1989 for $3.4 billion. Columbia lives on in the
Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group Sony Pictures Entertainment Motion Picture Group (commonly known as Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group, formerly known as the Columbia TriStar Motion Picture Group until 2013, and abbreviated as SPMPG) is a division of Sony Pictures, Sony Pictur ...
, a division of SPE which in turn owns
Columbia Pictures Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. is an American film production studio that is a member of the Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group, a division of Sony Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, which is one of the Major film studios, Big Five stud ...
and
TriStar Pictures TriStar Pictures, Inc. (spelled as Tri-Star until 1991) is an American film studio and production company that is a member of the Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group, part of the multinational conglomerate Sony. It is a corporate sibling of Sony ...
among other film production and distribution companies such as
Screen Gems Screen Gems is an American brand name used by Sony Pictures' Sony Pictures Entertainment Motion Picture Group, a subsidiary of Japanese multinational conglomerate, Sony, Sony Group Corporation. It has served several different purposes for its pa ...
,
Sony Pictures Classics Sony Pictures Classics Inc. is an American film production and distribution company that is a division of Sony Pictures. It was founded in 1992 by former Orion Classics heads Michael Barker, Tom Bernard and Marcie Bloom. It distributes, produces ...
,
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment Sony Pictures Home Entertainment (abbreviated as SPHE) is the home video distribution division of Sony Pictures Entertainment, a subsidiary of Sony, Sony Group Corporation. Background SPHE is responsible for the distribution of the Sony Pictur ...
. SPE's television division is known as
Sony Pictures Television Sony Pictures Television Inc. (abbreviated as SPT) is an American television production company, production and broadcast syndication, distribution studio. Based at the Sony Pictures Studios complex in Culver City, California, Culver City, it is ...
. For the first several years of its existence, Sony Pictures Entertainment performed poorly, leading many to suspect the company would sell off the division. In 2006 Sony started using ARccOS Protection on some of their film DVDs, but later issued a recall. In late 2014, Sony Pictures became the target of a hack attack from a clandestine group called Guardians of Peace, weeks before releasing the anti-North Korean
comedy film A comedy film is a category of film A film also called a movie, motion picture, moving picture, picture, photoplay or (slang) flick is a work of visual art that simulates experiences and otherwise communicates ideas, stories, perc ...
''
The Interview ''The Interview'' is a 2014 satire, satirical alternate history action comedy, action-comedy film co-produced and directed by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg in their second directorial work, following ''This Is the End'' (2013). The screenplay wa ...
''.


Sony Music Group and SMEJ

Sony Music Entertainment (also known as SME or Sony Music) is the largest global recorded music company of the "big three" record companies and is controlled by
Sony Corporation of America Sony Corporation of America (SONAM, also known as SCA), is the American arm of the Japanese conglomerate Sony Group Corporation SONAM, headquartered in New York City New York, often called New York City or NYC, i ...
, the United States subsidiary of Japan's ''Sony''. In one of its largest-ever acquisitions, Sony purchased CBS Record Group in 1988 for US$2 billion.Sony completes $2 billion purchase of CBS Records
upi.com 5 January 1988, Retrieved on 3 December 2017
In the process, Sony partnered and gained the rights to the ATV catalogue of Michael Jackson, considered by the ''
Guinness Book of World Records ''Guinness World Records'', known from its inception in 1955 until 1999 as ''The Guinness Book of Records'' and in previous United States editions as ''The Guinness Book of World Records'', is a reference book published annually, listing world ...
'' to be the most successful entertainer of all time. The acquisition of CBS Records provided the foundation for the formation of Sony Music Entertainment, which Sony established in 1991. In 1968, Sony and CBS Records had formed a 50:50 joint-venture CBS/Sony Records, later renamed CBS/Sony Group, in Japan. When CBS Records was acquired, a 50% stake in CBS/Sony Group owned by CBS was also transferred to Sony. In March 1988, four wholly owned subsidiaries were folded into CBS/Sony Group and the company was renamed as
Sony Music Entertainment Japan , often abbreviated as SMEJ or simply SME, and also known as Sony Music Japan for short (stylized as ''SonyMusic''), is a Japanese music arm for Sony. Founded in 1968 as CBS/Sony, SMEJ is directly owned by Sony, Sony Group Corporation and is ...
(SMEJ). It operates independently of Sony Music as it is directly owned by Japanese Sony. In 2004, Sony entered into a joint venture with
Bertelsmann AG Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA () is a German privately held company, private multinational corporation, multinational conglomerate (company), conglomerate corporation based in Gütersloh, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It is one of the world's l ...
, merging Sony Music Entertainment with
Bertelsmann Music Group Bertelsmann Music Group (BMG) was a division of a German media company Bertelsmann before its completion of sale of the majority of its assets to Sony Corporation of America on 1 October 2008. Although it was established in 1987, the music c ...
to create
Sony BMG Sony BMG Music Entertainment was an American record company owned as a 50–50 joint venture between Sony Corporation of America and Bertelsmann. The venture's successor, the revived Sony Music, is wholly owned by Sony, following their buyout o ...
. In 2005, Sony BMG faced a copy protection scandal, because its music CDs had installed
malware Malware (a portmanteau for ''malicious software'') is any software intentionally designed to cause disruption to a computer, server (computing), server, Client (computing), client, or computer network, leak private information, gain unauthorized ...
on users' computers that was posing a security risk to affected customers. In 2007, the company acquired
Famous Music Famous Music Corporation was the worldwide music publishing division of Paramount Pictures Paramount Pictures Corporation is an American film and television production company, production and Distribution (marketing), distribution company ...
for US$370 million, gaining the rights to the catalogues of
Eminem Marshall Bruce Mathers III (born October 17, 1972), known professionally as Eminem (; often stylized as EMINƎM), is an American rapper and record producer. He is credited with popularizing hip hop in middle America and is critically acclai ...
and
Akon Aliaune Damala Badara Akon Thiam (; born April 16, 1973), known mononymously as Akon, is a Senegalese-American singer, record producer, and entrepreneur. He rose to prominence in 2004 following the release of " Locked Up" (featuring Styles ...
, among others. Sony bought out Bertelsmann's share in Sony BMG and formed a new Sony Music Entertainment in 2008. Since then, the company has undergone management changes. Sony purchased digital music recognition company
Gracenote Gracenote, Inc. is a company owned by Nielsen Holdings that provides music, video and sports metadata and automatic content recognition (ACR) technologies to entertainment services and companies, worldwide. Formerly CDDB ("Compact Disc Data Base ...
for US$260 million in 2008. Tribune Media Company acquired Gracenote from Sony in 2014 for $170 million. Besides its record label, Sony operates other music businesses. In 1995, Sony merged its publisher with
Michael Jackson Michael Joseph Jackson (August 29, 1958 – June 25, 2009) was an American singer, songwriter, dancer, and philanthropist. Dubbed the "Honorific nicknames in popular music, King of Pop", he is regarded as Cultural impact of Michael Jackson, ...
's ATV Music Publishing, forming Sony/ATV Music Publishing. At the time, the publishing company was the second largest of its kind in the world. The company owns the publishing rights to over 4 million compositions, including
The Beatles The Beatles were an English Rock music, rock band, formed in Liverpool in 1960, that comprised John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr. They are regarded as the Cultural impact of the Beatles, most influential band of al ...
' Lennon-McCartney catalogue,
Bob Dylan Bob Dylan (legally Robert Dylan, born Robert Allen Zimmerman, May 24, 1941) is an American singer-songwriter. Often regarded as one of the greatest songwriters of all time, Dylan has been a major figure in popular culture during a career sp ...
,
Eminem Marshall Bruce Mathers III (born October 17, 1972), known professionally as Eminem (; often stylized as EMINƎM), is an American rapper and record producer. He is credited with popularizing hip hop in middle America and is critically acclai ...
,
Lady Gaga Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta ( ; born March 28, 1986), known professionally as Lady Gaga, is an American singer, songwriter, and actress. She is known for her image reinventions and musical versatility. Gaga began performing as a teenag ...
,
Sam Smith Samuel Frederick Smith (born 19 May 1992) is an English singer and songwriter. After rising to prominence in October 2012 by featuring on Disclosure (band), Disclosure's breakthrough single "Latch (song), Latch", which peaked at number eleve ...
,
Ed Sheeran Edward Christopher Sheeran (; born 17 February 1991) is an English singer-songwriter. Born in Halifax, West Yorkshire and raised in Framlingham, Suffolk, he began writing songs around the age of eleven. In early 2011, Sheeran independently re ...
, and
Taylor Swift Taylor Alison Swift (born December 13, 1989) is an American singer-songwriter. Her discography spans multiple genres, and her vivid List of songs by Taylor Swift, songwriting—often inspired by her personal life—has received critical prai ...
. In 2012, Sony/ATV acquired a majority stake in EMI Music Publishing, becoming the world's largest music publishing company. In 2018, Sony bought the rest of the shares in the publisher, making it a wholly owned subsidiary. Since 2016, Sony owns all of Sony/ATV.


Anime

Sony's entering into the Japanese animation, or
anime is Traditional animation, hand-drawn and computer animation, computer-generated animation originating from Japan. Outside of Japan and in English, ''anime'' refers specifically to animation produced in Japan. However, in Japan and in Japane ...
, business happened in 1995 when its
Sony Music Entertainment Japan , often abbreviated as SMEJ or simply SME, and also known as Sony Music Japan for short (stylized as ''SonyMusic''), is a Japanese music arm for Sony. Founded in 1968 as CBS/Sony, SMEJ is directly owned by Sony, Sony Group Corporation and is ...
(SMEJ) division established
Aniplex is a Japanese anime is Traditional animation, hand-drawn and computer animation, computer-generated animation originating from Japan. Outside of Japan and in English, ''anime'' refers specifically to animation produced in Japan. However ...
as its subsidiary managing creative productions, which founded
A-1 Pictures is a Japanese animation studio founded by ex-Sunrise (company), Sunrise producer Mikihiro Iwata and it is a subsidiary of Sony Music Entertainment Japan's anime production firm Aniplex. History The studio was established by SMEJ's animation pro ...
, the first anime studio of Sony, ten years later. Since then, through group-wide and international ventures, Sony has solidified its position in the industry, elevating the business to what is called the "fourth pillar of its entertainment portfolio" according to ''
The Nikkei ''The Nikkei'', also known as , is the flagship publication of Nikkei, Inc. (based in Tokyo) and the world's largest financial newspaper, with a daily circulation exceeding 1.73 million copies. The Nikkei 225, a stock market index for the Toky ...
''. The anime business operations of Sony are scattered around the group, mainly in its Pictures and Music units, as follows: SMEJ's notable related businesses include Aniplex and its subsidiaries
CloverWorks is a Japanese animation studio An animation studio is a company producing animated media. The broadest such companies conceive of products to produce, own the physical equipment for production, employ operators for that equipment, and hold a ma ...
and A-1 Pictures while
Sony Pictures Entertainment Japan , abbreviated SPE or SPEJ, is a Japanese film studio, based in Minato, Tokyo, Minato-ku, Tokyo. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of Japanese conglomerate Sony, Sony Group Corporation, with the majority of SPEJ's shares held by Sony Pictures, Sony ...
(SPEJ) operates anime-oriented TV channels like
Animax , stylized as ANIMAX, is a Japanese animation satellite television network, dedicated to broadcasting anime programming. The channel also dubbed other cartoons in Japanese language. A subsidiary of Sony Pictures Entertainment Japan, it is headqu ...
,
Kids Station Kids Station ( Japanese: キッズステーション, ''Kizzu Sutēshon'') is a Japanese children's television channel showing anime and other cartoon material. Kids Station also airs some anime aimed at teens and adults during the night, such as ' ...
; Aniplex and U.S.-headquartered
Sony Pictures Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. (commonly known as Sony Pictures or SPE, and formerly known as Columbia Pictures Entertainment, Inc.) is an American diversified multinational mass media and entertainment studio Conglomerate (company), conglom ...
co-own U.S.-based anime distribution company
Crunchyroll Crunchyroll is an American Video on demand#Subscription models, subscription video on-demand Over-the-top media service, over-the-top streaming service owned by Sony through a joint venture between Sony Pictures and Sony Music Entertainment Ja ...
, which since 2022, has become the successor company to
Funimation Crunchyroll, LLC, previously known as Funimation from 1994 to 2022, is an American entertainment company owned by Japanese conglomerate Sony as a joint venture between Sony Pictures and Sony Music Entertainment Japan's Aniplex that special ...
, which it acquired in 2017 and included subsidiaries such as Wakanim (absorbing into Crunchyroll itself) and Madman Anime (to be rebranded as Crunchyroll Pty. Ltd.) In December 2020, Funimation announced that it would buy
AT&T AT&T Inc. is an American multinational corporation, multinational telecommunications holding company headquartered at Whitacre Tower in Downtown Dallas, Texas. It is the world's List of largest companies by revenue, largest telecommunications ...
's animation business
Crunchyroll Crunchyroll is an American Video on demand#Subscription models, subscription video on-demand Over-the-top media service, over-the-top streaming service owned by Sony through a joint venture between Sony Pictures and Sony Music Entertainment Ja ...
for $1.175 billion, which would help the company to compete more globally with entertainment giants such as Netflix. This acquisition was completed in August 2021.


Financial Services

Sony Financial Group is a holding company for Sony's financial services business which includes Sony Life (in Japan and the Philippines), Sony Assurance, Sony Bank, etc. The unit proved to be the most profitable of Sony's businesses in FY 2005, earning $1.7 billion in profit. Sony Financial's low fees have aided the unit's popularity while threatening Sony's premium brand name.


Others


Electric vehicles and batteries

A company behind the commercialization of
lithium-ion battery A lithium-ion or Li-ion battery is a type of rechargeable battery which uses the reversible Redox, reduction of lithium ions to store energy. It is the predominant battery type used in portable consumer electronics and electric vehicles. It als ...
, Sony had been exploring the possibility to manufacture the batteries for
electric vehicle An electric vehicle (EV) is a vehicle that uses one or more traction motor, electric motors for propulsion. It can be powered by a Current collector, collector system, with electricity from extravehicular sources, or it can be powered autonom ...
s. In 2014, Sony participated within
NRG Energy NRG Energy, Inc. is an American energy company, headquartered in Houston, Texas. It was formerly the wholesale arm of Northern States Power Company (NSP), which became Xcel Energy, but became independent in 2000. NRG Energy is involved in energ ...
eVgo Ready for Electric Vehicle (REV) program, for EV charging parking lots. However, the company then decided to sell its lithium-ion battery business to Murata Manufacturing in 2016. In 2015, Sony invested $842 thousand in ZMP INC., drawing speculations that it is contemplating developing
self-driving car A self-driving car, also known as an autonomous car, driver-less car, or robotic car (robo-car), is a car that is capable of traveling without User interface, human input.Xie, S.; Hu, J.; Bhowmick, P.; Ding, Z.; Arvin, F.,Distributed Motion ...
s. In January 2020, Sony unveiled a concept electric car at the
Consumer Electronics Show CES (; formerly an initialism for Consumer Electronics Show) is an annual trade show organized by the Consumer Technology Association, Consumer Technology Association (CTA). Held in January at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Winchester, Nevad ...
, named Vision-S, designed in collaboration with components manufacturer
Magna International Magna International Inc. is a Canadian parts manufacturer for automakers. It is one of the largest companies in Canada and was recognized on the 2020 ''Forbes ''Forbes'' () is an American business magazine owned by Integrated Whale Media ...
. At the occasion, Sony also stated its goal of developing technology for the automotive sector, especially concerning autonomous driving, sensors, and
in-car entertainment In-car entertainment (ICE), or in-vehicle infotainment (IVI), is a collection of hardware and software in automobiles that provides audio or video entertainment. In car entertainment originated with car audio systems that consisted of radios and c ...
. In 2022, Sony Group and
Honda is a Japanese Public company, public multinational corporation, multinational Conglomerate (company), conglomerate manufacturer of automobiles, motorcycles, and power equipment, headquartered in Minato, Tokyo, Japan. Honda has been the world ...
launched a joint venture for their electric vehicle partnership, (SHM), which would deliver its first electric vehicles by 2026 and sell them online, starting in the United States and Japan.


Corporate information


Institutional ownership

Sony is a ''
kabushiki gaisha A or ''kabushiki kaisha'', commonly abbreviated K.K. or KK, is a type of defined under the Companies Act of Japan. The term is often translated as "stock company", "joint-stock company" or "stock corporation". The term ''kabushiki gaisha'' in ...
'' registered to the
Tokyo Stock Exchange The , abbreviated as Tosho () or TSE/TYO, is a stock exchange located in Tokyo, Japan. It is the third largest stock exchange in the world by aggregate market capitalization of its listed companies, and the largest in Asia. It had 2,292 listed co ...
in Japan and the
New York Stock Exchange The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE, nicknamed "The Big Board") is an American stock exchange in the Financial District of Lower Manhattan in New York City New York, often called New York City or NYC, is the List o ...
for overseas trading. , the largest shareholders of Sony are as follows: *
Citibank Citibank, N. A. (N. A. stands for "National bank#United States, National Association") is the primary U.S. banking subsidiary of financial services multinational corporation, multinational Citigroup. Citibank was founded in 1812 as the City Ban ...
(as depositary bank for
American depositary receipt An American depositary receipt (ADR, and sometimes spelled ''depository'') is a Negotiable instrument, negotiable security that represents securities of a foreign company and allows that company's shares to trade in the U.S. financial markets. ...
holders) (9.4%) *
The Master Trust Bank of Japan is a trust bank in Japan. It was founded in 2000 and claims to be the first trust bank in Japan to be exclusively engaged in asset administration business. The company's shareholders are Mitsubishi UFJ Trust and Banking Corporation (46.5%), Ni ...
–nominated
investment trust An investment trust is a form of investment fund An investment fund is a way of investing money alongside other investors in order to benefit from the inherent advantages of working as part of a group such as reducing the risks of the investm ...
s (main account) (8.2%) *
Japan Trustee Services Bank , or JTSB, is a trust bank in Japan. JTSB is a joint venture between Resona Bank and Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings, and acts as a subcontracted trustee for both banks to hold their customers' assets, which include pension fund and investment tr ...
–nominated investment trusts ** Main trust account (6.1%) ** Trust account 7 (2.4%) ** Trust account 5 (2.1%) * JPMorgan Chase Bank 385632 (3.2%)


Finances

As of July 2020, Sony, one of the largest Japanese companies by market capitalization and operating profit, was valued at over $90 billion. At the same period, it was also recognized as the most cash-rich Japanese company, with its net cash reserves of ¥1.8 trillion. The company was immensely profitable throughout the 1990s and early 2000s in part because of the success of its new
PlayStation is a video game, video gaming brand that consists of five home video game consoles, two Handheld game console, handhelds, a Home theater PC, media center, and a smartphone, as well as an online service and multiple magazines. The brand is p ...
line. The company encountered financial difficulty in the mid- to late-2000s due to a number of factors: the
global financial crisis Global means of or referring to a globe and may also refer to: Entertainment * Global (Paul van Dyk album), ''Global'' (Paul van Dyk album), 2003 * Global (Bunji Garlin album), ''Global'' (Bunji Garlin album), 2007 * Global (Humanoid album), ''Gl ...
, increased competition for PlayStation, and the devastating Japanese earthquake of 2011. The company faced three consecutive years of losses leading up to 2011."Sony: Too Much make-Believe." FT.com (2011): n/a. ABI/INFORM Global; ProQuest Research Library. Web. 26 May 2012. While noting the negative effects of intervening circumstances such as natural disasters and fluctuating currency exchange rates, the ''
Financial Times The ''Financial Times'' (''FT'') is a British daily newspaper A newspaper is a Periodical literature, periodical publication containing written News, information about current events and is often typed in black ink with a white or gray ba ...
'' criticized the company for its "lack of resilience" and "inability to gauge the economy," voicing skepticism about Sony's revitalization efforts, given a lack of tangible results. In September 2000 Sony had a market capitalization of $100 billion; but by December 2011 it had plunged to $18 billion, reflecting falling prospects for Sony but also reflecting grossly inflated share prices of the '
dot-com bubble The dot-com bubble (dot-com boom, tech bubble, or the Internet bubble) was a stock market bubble in the late 1990s, a period of massive growth in the use and adoption of the Internet. Between 1995 and its peak in March 2000, the Nasdaq Compos ...
' years. Net worth, as measured by stockholder equity, has steadily grown from $17.9 billion in March 2002 to $35.6 billion through December 2011. Earnings yield (inverse of the price to earnings ratio) has never been more than 5% and usually much less; thus Sony has always traded in over-priced ranges with the exception of the 2009 market bottom. On 9 December 2008, Sony announced that it would be cutting 8,000 jobs, dropping 8,000 contractors and reducing its global manufacturing sites by 10% to save $1.1 billion per year. In April 2012, Sony announced that it would reduce its workforce by 10,000 (6% of its employee base) as part of CEO Kaz Hirai's effort to get the company back into the black. This came after a loss of 520 billion yen (roughly US$6.36 billion) for fiscal 2012, the worst since the company was founded. Accumulation loss for the past four years was 919.32 billion-yen. Sony planned to increase its marketing expenses by 30% in 2012. 1,000 of the jobs cut come from the company's mobile phone unit's workforce. 700 jobs will be cut in the 2012–2013 fiscal year and the remaining 300 in the following fiscal year. Sony had revenues of ¥6.493 trillion in 2012 and maintained large reserves of cash, with ¥895 billion on hand as of 2012. In May 2012, Sony's market capitalization was valued at about $15 billion. In January 2013, Sony announced it was selling its US headquarters building for $1.1 billion to a consortium led by real estate developer The Chetrit Group. On 28 January 2014,
Moody's Investors Service Moody's Investors Service, often referred to as Moody's, is the bond credit rating business of Moody's Corporation, representing the company's traditional line of business and its historical name. Moody's Investors Service provides international ...
s dropped Sony's credit rating to Ba1—"judged to have speculative elements and a significant credit risk"—saying that the company's "profitability is likely to remain weak and volatile." On 6 February 2014, Sony announced it would trim as many as 5,000 jobs as it attempts to sell its PC business and focus on mobile and tablets. In 2014, Sony South Africa closed its TV, Hi-Fi and camera divisions with the purpose of reconsidering its local distribution model and, in 2017, it returned facilitated by Premium Brand Distributors (Pty) Ltd. In November 2018, Sony posted its earning report for the second quarter showing it has lost about US$480 million in the mobile phone division, prompting another round of downsizing in the unit, including the closure of a manufacturing plant and halving of its workforce.


Environmental record

In November 2011, Sony was ranked ninth (jointly with Panasonic) in
Greenpeace Greenpeace is an independent global campaigning network, founded in Canada in 1971 by Irving Stowe and Dorothy Stowe, immigrant environmental activists from the United States. Greenpeace states its goal is to "ensure the ability of the Earth to ...
's Guide to Greener Electronics. This chart grades major electronics companies on their environmental work. The company scored 3.6/10, incurring a penalty point for comments it has made in opposition to energy efficiency standards in California. It also risks a further penalty point in future editions for being a member of trade associations that have commented against energy efficiency standards. Together with
Philips Koninklijke Philips N.V. (), commonly shortened to Philips, is a Dutch Multinational corporation, multinational Conglomerate (company), conglomerate corporation that was founded in Eindhoven in 1891. Since 1997, it has been mostly headquartered ...
, Sony receives the highest score for energy policy advocacy after calling on the EU to adopt an unconditional 30% reduction target for greenhouse gas emissions by 2020. Meanwhile, it receives full marks for the efficiency of its products. In June 2007, Sony ranked 14th on the
Greenpeace Greenpeace is an independent global campaigning network, founded in Canada in 1971 by Irving Stowe and Dorothy Stowe, immigrant environmental activists from the United States. Greenpeace states its goal is to "ensure the ability of the Earth to ...
guide. Sony fell from its earlier 11th-place ranking due to Greenpeace's claims that Sony had double standards in their waste policies. Greenpeace's 2017 Guide to Greener Electronics rated Sony approximately in the middle among electronics manufacturers with a grade of D+. Since 1976, Sony has had an Environmental Conference. Sony's policies address their effects on global warming, the environment, and resources. They are taking steps to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases that they put out as well as regulating the products they get from their suppliers in a process that they call "green procurement". Sony has said that they have signed on to have about 75 percent of their Sony Building running on
geothermal power Geothermal power is electricity generation, electrical power generated from geothermal energy. Technologies in use include dry steam power stations, flash steam power stations and binary cycle power stations. Geothermal electricity generation ...
. The "Sony Take Back Recycling Program" allow consumers to recycle the electronics products that they buy from Sony by taking them to eCycle (Recycling) drop-off points around the U.S. The company has also developed a biobattery that runs on sugars and carbohydrates that works similarly to the way living creatures work. This is the most powerful small biobattery to date. In 2000, Sony faced criticism for a document entitled "NGO Strategy" that was leaked to the press. The document involved the company's surveillance of environmental activists in an attempt to plan how to counter their movements. It specifically mentioned environmental groups that were trying to pass laws that held electronics-producing companies responsible for the cleanup of the toxic chemicals contained in their merchandise.


Cartel

In 2007 an investigation launched in 2002 by the
European Commission The European Commission (EC) is the Executive (government), executive of the European Union (EU). It operates as a cabinet government, with 27 European Commissioner, members of the Commission (informally known as "Commissioners") headed by a P ...
culminated in Sony, Fuji and
Maxell , commonly known as Maxell, is a Japanese company (law), company that manufactures consumer electronics. The company's name is a contraction of "Maximum capacity dry cell". Its main products are Battery (electricity), batteries, wireless chargin ...
receiving a total of 110 million US dollar fine for fixing professional videotape prices between the years 1999 and 2002 through regular meetings and other illegal contracts; at the time the three corporations shared a combined 85% control of the market. Sony's part of the fine was raised by a third for trying to obstruct the investigation by refusing to answer inquiries made by the EU officials and shredding of evidence during the multiple law-enforcement raids. During the year 2001 prior to the investigation Sony sold professional videotapes for a total of 115 million euros inside the EU.


Community engagement

* EYE SEE project
Sony Corporation is actively involved in the EYE SEE project conducted by
UNICEF UNICEF (), originally called the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund in full, now officially United Nations Children's Fund, is an agency of the United Nations responsible for providing Humanitarianism, humanitarian and Devel ...
. EYE SEE digital photography workshops have been run for children in Argentina, Tunisia, Mali, South Africa, Ethiopia, Madagascar, Rwanda, Liberia and Pakistan. * South Africa Mobile Library Project
Sony assists The South Africa Primary Education Support Initiative (SAPESI) through financial donations and children book donations to the South Africa Mobile Library Project. * The Sony Canada Charitable Foundation
The Sony Canada Charitable Foundation (SCCF) is a non-profit organization which supports three key charities; the Make-A-Wish Canada, the United Way of Canada and the EarthDay and ECOKIDS program. * Sony Foundation and You Can
After the 2011 Queensland floods and Victorian bushfires, Sony Music released benefit albums with money raised going to the Sony Foundation. You Can is the youth cancer program of Sony Foundation. * Open Planet Ideas Crowdsourcing Project
Sony launched its Open Planet Ideas Crowdsourcing Project, in partnership with the
World Wildlife Fund The World Wide Fund for Nature Inc. (WWF) is an international non-governmental organization founded in 1961 that works in the field of wilderness preservation and the reduction of human impact on the environment. It was formerly named the W ...
and the design group,
IDEO IDEO () is a design firm, design and consulting firm with offices in the U.S., England, Germany, Japan, and China. It was founded in Palo Alto, California, in 1991. The company's 700 staff uses a design thinking approach to design products, serv ...
. * Street Football Stadium Project
On the occasion of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, Sony partnered with and launched the Street Football Stadium Project to support football-based educational programmes in local communities across Latin America and Brazil. More than 25 Street Stadiums were developed since the project's inception. * The Sony Global Relief Fund for COVID-19
During the
COVID-19 pandemic The COVID-19 pandemic, also known as the coronavirus pandemic, is an ongoing global pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The novel virus was first identif ...
, Sony launched a relief fund in line with other media and tech companies to aid individuals working in the medical, education, and entertainment sectors.


See also

* List of acquisitions by Sony *
List of assets owned by Sony This is a list of assets owned by Japanese Multinational corporation, multinational Conglomerate (company), conglomerate Sony, Sony Group Corporation. Subsidiaries and affiliates by business segment Electronics * Sony Corporation ** :ja:ソニ ...
* List of libraries owned by Sony * List of companies of Japan


Notes


References


Further reading

* '' Made in Japan'' by Akio Morita and Sony,
HarperCollins HarperCollins Publishers LLC is one of the Publishing#Book publishing, Big Five English-language publishing companies, alongside Penguin Random House, Simon & Schuster, Hachette (publisher), Hachette, and Macmillan Publishers, Macmillan. The com ...
(1994) * ''Sony: The Private Life'' by John Nathan,
Houghton Mifflin The asterisk ( ), from Late Latin , from Ancient Greek , ''asteriskos'', "little star", is a Typography, typographical symbol. It is so called because it resembles a conventional image of a star (heraldry), heraldic star. Computer scientists ...
(1999) * ''The Japan Project: Made in Japan'' – a documentary about Sony's early history in the U.S. by
Terry Sanders Terry Sanders (born December 20, 1931) is an American filmmaker having film producer, produced and/or film director, directed more than 70 dramatic features, televisions specials, Documentary film, documentaries and portrait films. He co-heads t ...
. * ''The Portable Radio in American Life'' by Michael Brian Schiffer (The University of Arizona Press, 1991). * ''Sony Radio, Sony Transistor Radio 35th Anniversary 1955–1990'' – information booklet (1990)


External links

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