Sony CEO Stringer talks Apple iPhone: ‘I wouldn’t bet against Steve Jobs’

“In a frank TV interview which has not been put to air yet Sony boss Sir Howard Stringer… [was] asked about Apple’s iPhone,” David Richards reports for Smarthouse.

Richards reports, Stringer said, “‘The good news is that Steve Jobs spotted a trend that we’ve seen. The phone is a convergence device, between music and a phone. We are all building variations on the same theme. We have sold plenty of Walkman phones [from Sony Ericsson], especially in Europe.’

Richards reports, “While Stringer is pleased with Sony’s cellular phone progress, ‘I would never sit up here and say I’m not worried about Steve Jobs. I wouldn’t bet against Steve.'”

Full article, in which Stringer also talks about Apple’s iPod, Blu-ray vs. HD DVD, and more, here.
The lack of FUD in Stringer’s comments is refreshing (as opposed to the video below), but nobody really has anything close to being as integrated and powerful as Apple’s OS X-based, multi-touch iPhone.

This is how something acts when it knows it has absolutely nothing with which to compete:

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28 Comments

  1. Yeah he bettet talk nice about Jobs, after all Apple supports Blu-Ray. Blu-Ray is by far the most important technology for Sony. It finally gives them a standard after having failed with Beta-Max and Memory Sticks and all the other stuff that never caught on..

  2. “nobody really has anything close to being as integrated and powerful as Apple’s OS X-based, multi-touch iPhone.”

    And what will I do with that incredibly roomy 8 GB of space on my $600 iPhone? True, I can load and play TWO whole movies.

    Sorry, but a “convergent” device must do everything well to justify a premium price. The _concept_ of the iPhone and the over-the-top cool interface blows everything out of the water, but Joe and Mary Cell Phone User are going to need a real reason to buy the thing. They JUST DON’T CARE that it runs an OS that cannot be equaled anywhere. The guy wandering into Cingular wanting to know “what’s a SIM card” just does not have the technological savvy to distinguish what is good and bad in a cell phone/smartphone/internet device. You tell that guy he has to pay $40 for the cell plan and another $40 for the data plan, and he walks over to the black RAZR ’cause “that’s one cool phone, dood.”

    Of course, the people who read and post here are going to buy the thing. We’re techno-geeks. We own six cell phones. We install Linux because it’s fun. We triple boot a Mac Mini because we can (and we know what “triple boot” means). But none of that translates into the zillions of phones the MDN thinks Apple will sell. The iPhone is the Cube of 2007. It wins every award there is, it gets every good review it can, and no one will buy it.

    Dump the cell phone bits and throw a 60 GB HD in the iPhone, and THAT is your gajillion unit seller.

  3. Companies who use FUD probably realize they don’t have technology to compete, while companies who pay respect their competitors probably are confident they have technology, which allow them to remain competitive.

  4. “And what will I do with that incredibly roomy 8 GB of space on my $600 iPhone? True, I can load and play TWO whole movies.”

    What has the world come to when people complain that they can only carry and watch TWO whole movies on their phone?

  5. Caruso,
    Uhm, given the “in-use” battery-life of 5 hours, you don’t have the time to see more than “TWO whole movies”.

    And, if you use an iPod, you would know that when you charge and sync with your computer, you can re-load your iPod. If you use podcasts, you can set it to choose the most recent and unheard podcasts. Presumably if you transfer movies, you can set it for something similar. Unless you’re kindergarten age, you’re not likely to watch the same movie over 40x or so.

  6. Two things…

    One…

    Not trying to be a jerk, but when I boil a movie down to put on my Mac Mini, it is rare when it ends up over 1 GB, usually around 700 MB. And that quality should be more than adequate for a screen the size of an iPhone’s.

    I figure you could easily get four movies on the 8 GB model and still have room for a goodly stash of music.

    Two…

    “While Stringer is pleased with Sony’s cellular phone progress, ‘I would never sit up here and say I’m not worried about Steve Jobs. I wouldn’t bet against Steve.'”

    That is how you answer a question about a competitor. Compare that to Gates’ whiny-bitch response to the question about Apple ads.

  7. we know what “triple boot” means

    It has three feet, two of them left, and we have to pay twice as much at the shoe store because no one will sell you a single shoe for that extra left foot. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  8. I realize the iPhone is an iPod, but it was never touted as a movie viewer. It’s a phone, a music player, and an internet device. I think 8GB is more than adequate for those functions.

    Besides, nobody’s running around town watching movies on their phones and likely will not with the iPhone.

    Movies are really not the point with the iPhone.

  9. Name one other phone at any price that holds 8 GB of memory. Also since when has any phones success been tied to playing movies?

    It won’t play two full movies so it must suck and won’t sell. What a stupid thought!

    I’m not a techno-geek but will buy two of these phones the day it comes out!

    MW: likely ( your likely an idiot and a troll)

  10. Yeah, who has the time while away from home to watch a movie anyway?

    I am out there doing things, don’t have time for entertainment.

    In any case, I am more interested in the idea of a handheld computer that uses OSX in some form.

    When it’s actually out there, people will begin to realize all the things they can do with it. They probably can’t imagine them now, but they will.

    It’s like before Tiger. I thought I would have no particular use for Spotlight, and I really did not care about Widgets. Now that I have them, I can’t imagine how I got along without them before.

  11. Justified…and Caruso,
    Watch the keynote phone introduction again

    This is a phone that will be used by Salespeople, mobile professionals, early adopters, people with the cash for cool, and a herd of wannabes. Is that ten million? EASY… THEN the 2nd Gen phone comes out…it’s 3G, It has 20 to 30 gigs of storage, and has even more widgets, and apps. Will THAT sell 10 million more? EASY.

    Steve SHOWED it playing Pirates of the Carribean (which if memory serves…is a MOVIE)…and EVERY day…when I choose to I recharge my 5G ipod, changing out the media, updating movies, tv shows, music, contacts and photos. The iPhone will do the same only it will do it far better. Right now…when I take my ipod to a friends house I take the video cables in a little box and play movies from my iPod on their TV. The higher res movies the iPhone supports will play on big screen monitors.

    The iPhone is going to have a couple more surprises when it actually debuts and watch for the 3G, larger capacity version to happen within the year following.

  12. There sure is a lot of hype about this phone and Apple is a pretty smart company with Jobs in charge. It makes me wonder if Apple has another trick up its sleeve regarding battery life or maybe offering the phone without a contract because there are just too many negatives that Job’s would have seen a long time ago. For instance the 5 hour battery life that is non user replaceable reminds me exactly of the horror my 3G ipod was when its battery finally crapped out.

    I agree that the iphone is not a movie viewing device. Anyone that has ever tried to watch a full length wide screen movie on a device smaller than that of even the smallest portable dvd player (non-laptop) is full of shit when they say that they will be watching full movies. I think a lot of people have it slightly reversed. The point is to put on television shows, youtube videos, home movies etc not full length movies, and this is reiterated by the limited storage space. The trend now is mobile tv and apple has brought mobile television with more class and options than any new verizon “broadband tv” phone. The main difference is Apple made it essentially free.

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