Sony: Apple launched iPod too early, technology now ready for ‘Walkman’ name

“The new Walkman is the most serious challenge to the iPod that Apple has faced… It’s starting to look like a gadget war. Sony officials claim their product isn’t an ‘iPod killer,’ just an alternative. But Sony has a lot of ground to reclaim,” Al Lewis writes for The Denver Post. “Sony… has not led the digital music revolution. The leader is Apple, which introduced the iPod in November 2001. Apple has sold about 4 million iPods.”

Lewis writes, “Sony was late to market, and the Walkman brand name lost its luster to iPod. Sony officials argue that Apple launched its iPod too early. ‘The technology wasn’t ready until now to carry the Walkman brand name,’ said Sony vice president Todd Schrader.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: The new Walkman is the most serious challenge to the iPod that Apple has faced? Read the reviews, or just read the headlines below even, they tell the real story.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Review: Apple’s iPod kills Sony’s new Network Walkman – August 04, 2004
Mossberg: Sony Walkman ‘laborious, weak, lousy, confusing, stinks’ vs. Apple iPod – July 28, 2004
Apple blasts Sony on misleading Walkman song capacity claims – July 08, 2004
San Francisco Chronicle: Sony Walkman vs. Apple iPod – July 07, 2004
Washington Post: Sony’s internet music service ‘is an embarrassment to the company that gave the world the Walkman’ – May 29, 2004
Sony lumbers after Apple but it’s not working – May 24, 2004
Apple iTunes Music Store vs. Sony Connect is no contest, Apple wins with ease – May 09, 2004
NY Times pans Sony Connect debut: ‘maybe they ought to call it Sony Disconnect’ – May 05, 2004


  1. NASA launches Space Shuttle Technology Too Early

    Russia today announced that their space program will now kick into high gear with up to date Shuttle technology.

    Said spokesperson Vladimir Vodka…

    “Da – Ve knew that the Shuttle technology vas not yet ready for the Russian brand name. But now, the technology has reached a level that allows us to proceed with confidence.”

  2. Thirteen colonies launches American Revolution too early. Britain is expected to announce early tomorrow afternoon that it is now ready to compete in the American Revolution now that enough technological advances are ready for them to comfortably compete.

  3. Haha! This is desperate stuff.

    I got the iPod the day it was released. It was absolutely made available when all technology was ready and not before – when the drives were made with enough space in a small enough package. I was tempted before the iPod to get a Creative Jukebox, but it was simply too big and too slow (it used to take about 3 minutes to boot), so I did without. A friend who had the Creative jukebox traded it for an iPod as soon as he could.

    Creative were in the market too early when the technology wasn’t quite ready.

  4. “Apple launched its iPod too early. ‘The technology wasn’t ready until now to carry the Walkman brand name,’ said Sony vice president Todd Schrader.”

    Huh….. oh those inscrutabel Japanese.

  5. I think he was referring to Sony’s technology, and that Apple launched the iPod too early for them to compete.
    It has been my experience that Japaneese companies do not play the same sorts of rhetoric games that American ones do, and that they actually respect, rather than dismiss competitors. It has also been my experience that American media loves to creatively quote sources to sensationalise everything, which is what I believe happened here.

  6. Nice to see Sony have a fully operational Whistling In The Dark division!

    How many iPods have been sold? Over 3.5 million.

    How many iTMS tracks? Over 100 million.

    But, according to Sony, the world has been waiting for Sony to come along and save us with their vision of a hard drive Walkman.

    Apple may sell a [B]MILLION[/B] iPods this quarter, or a unit every 8 seconds. They will probably sell around 5.2 million tracks, through a store which [B]only[/B] reaches around 550 million consumers.

    Sony will be lucky if they sell 500,000 tracks and 125,000 Walkmans. Their solution is too late, too expensive and too cumbersome which is all bad enough. But it also fails as a cross-platform solution, which means that it misses out on the most well-educated, most affluent user community.

    Arrogant twaddle of the worst kind – if this is the best marketing Sony can develop, they really deserve to be made to suffer.

  7. What is this Todd Schrader character smoking? Or is he into mushrooms?
    The worst part is, that guys like that, once they have been fired, even get severance payments. The simple worker on the assembly line who has to build this crappy device, however, will be fired to reduce the operational losses. Rant…

  8. The world may have been waiting for a digital Walkman, but the reviews so far have been horrible. (And because Sony owns Columbia Records, there was a tug of war beteween the music division and hardware division whether to get into the marketplace at all – either with a player of music store. The hardware division finally prevailed).

    Yup, the technology wasn’t ready for the Walkman name because Apple made it happen with the iPod name. Sony’s device is a “me-too” effort neither better nor breaking any really new ground. It should be noted that there are several divisions within Sony developing similar devices. What a mess!

  9. Sony introduced their 23” CRT monitor TOO easily!!! Our office bought 8 of them and ALL of them die within six months time!!!! Their Tec support service was horrible. If they should wait until they figure out how to make large CRT monitor right, we wouldn’t have so many problems. Sony is going down the drain as far as I’m concern.

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