Forbe’s Sony’s Network Walkman falls short of Apple’s iPod

“In trials, Sony’s Network Walkman performed like the high-end device that it is. If you’ve never used an iPod before, then there certainly is a lot to like… While smaller is generally better, the iPod display screen is bigger and clearer, thus modestly easier to read. And its sleek white-and-stainless-steel exterior is more refreshing and exciting than the boring brushed-steel-and-black surfaces that dominate most of Sony’s consumer electronics,” Mark Hazlin reports for Forbes.

“It’s strange that Sony, which is a record company in its own right, hasn’t done a better job with its store: Its software didn’t work terribly well, gave error messages and froze when burning CDs. Of course, the same issues pop up with iTunes as well. It seems there are plenty of bugs to go around on both sides,” Hazlin writes.

“The Network Walkman’s $400 price tag gives the iPod the edge. Apple’s 40-GB iPod goes for the same price. Sony’s player should be about $100 cheaper. Overall, despite many good points, the Walkman falls short of the iPod. Sony can do better, but has yet to get its formula right. Given a choice, go with the iPod,” Hazlin reports.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: iTunes on Mac OS X has never given us error messages or frozen while burning CDs. Perhaps Hazlin is using iTunes on some other platform that is presenting problems not of iTunes’ making? Otherwise, good advice: get an iPod over a Sony Walkman.


  1. The problem is that he iPod is perfect. the patented wheel makes it hard to beat. people still buy it despite shorter battery life. I don’t see how anyone can best it.
    go Apple!
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  2. If the software has a bug, the fault lies entirely on the shoulders of the software maker. Sorry, MDN, I don’t agree with you there. That said, iTunes on my PC has never given me those problems listed in the article. Same goes for iTunes on my iBook.

  3. For the countless hours I have tweaked my music library, I have NEVER seen an error message pop up. In addition, I have NEVER had iTunes for either my PowerBook or my iMac freeze on me. And my friends wonder why I switched…

  4. Kircle –

    yes, but in this case, the “software maker” is not just Apple, but Microsoft!

    If these problems appear on Macs, then it’s entirely Apple’s fault. (Assuming no third party hacks, of course. But who ever mentions they have those when troubleshooting. No, never! But they go on to claim problems nonetheless.)

    BUT, if these problems appear on PCs, then the fault is with both Microsoft and Apple. I don’t think MDN was saying that Apple is entirely not at fault. Rather, that given the usual mixture of hacks, unintentional modifications, etc. on a PC, it’s more than likely that his so-called problems appeared on a PC. In that case, it is certainly Microsoft’s domain.

    MDN almost always react correctly with their stories. Hey, it’s their website, and they have their own opinions. But I have yet to come across a poorly reasoned byline.

  5. There were some initial glitches in the 4.0 release but those were just for people running specific software setups. I *think* winxp users were fine. Regardless, apple had a 4.0.1 release out in record time. In contrast, there is no fix out from sony yet.

  6. I can make iTunes freeze up every time i insert a CD for burning if I try to change the name of the CD when the system alert window asks me what I want to do (where the default name is highlighted). This also happens for inserting CDs for making backups, too. So, I don’t think it is an iTunes problem. I use an external burner because my old TiBook can’t burn CDs internally. This has been a problem for a quite a while, across several major versions of OS X. Since it isn’t iTunes that is frozen the only way I have been able to stop and start over again is to reboot my laptop.

  7. Damning with faint praise. The writer did not catalog specific flaws with iTunes, instead making the blanket statement that there are plenty of bugs on both sides, giving the impression that iTunes and Sony’s software are on par, which they decidedly are not. I urge MDN readers to challenge him for specifics, and let’s see exactly what quantity he considers “plenty”, and if the purported bugs are as serious as he implies. Rubbishy journalism.

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