“Juliana Sasaki did not bother checking out Sony Corp’s digital music player in Tokyo before buying her green iPod mini. ‘I knew Sony and other companies had MP3 players, but they can’t beat the mini,’ says Sasaki, a language teacher. ‘I went straight to the Apple store. The mini is so cute.’ In Japan, home to four of the five top electronics companies by sales, advance orders made Apple Computer Inc’s iPod mini the top-selling portable player three weeks before its July 24 release. It still is, China Daily reported Monday,” Desmond Hutton reports for Bloomberg News.
“Tokyo-based Sony’s embarrassment at Apple’s hands is another setback for the company that in 1979 invented the world’s first portable music player, the Walkman. Sony’s profit from consumer electronics has fallen in five of the past six years as Sharp Corp and Matsushita Electric Industrial Co grabbed the digital initiative with flat-screen televisions and DVD players,” Hutton reports. “‘Sony was the pioneer with the Walkman,’ says Alexander Shalash, who manages US$120 million in global technology stocks including Apple shares, for Swissca Portfolio Management in Zurich. ‘This time they’re late. There are no alternatives to the iPod right now.'”
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