Can Sony’s tablet repeat the success of the PlayStation?

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Sony have announced that they’ll be releasing two tablets later this year – one is similar to Apple’s iPad while the other is a clamshell design, reminiscent of Nintendo’s DS. The tablets will run the Android OS. Music and video content will be provided through Sony’s Qriocity service (I assume the Qriocity service will be extended to support distribution of apps).

I can’t help thinking about how the Sony PlayStation gatecrashed the Nintendo-Sega party and ended up outselling the N64 three-to-one. The clamshell approach is a brave one and it’s interesting that Sony’s opted to go with the Android OS, given their track record of pushing their own formats (e.g. U-matic, Betamax, 3.5″ floppy discs, DAT, MiniDisc, Betacam, UMD, Memory Stick, Blu-ray), although not entirely surprising, given that Sony Ericsson has embraced Android for its mobile phones.

Sony’s most successful product was the Walkman which relied on the freely-licensed compact cassette. Could they end up exploiting Android in a similar fashion and knocking Apple off the tablet pedestal?

Written by jackgavigan

April 27, 2011 at 8:41 pm

Posted in Innovation, Openness

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