February 11, 2014 | In: Technology

Bye Bye, Sony Vaio!

Sony has declared last week that it is selling its PC business (which consists of its Vaio line). Many out there (including myself) are only used to working with Vaio products (which are very reliable), so now we’re all left stranded. It seems that Sony is shrinking its business by the day – the next thing we’ll probably hear about is Sony selling its TV division to another company, and focusing only on transistor radios. I don’t know – but with this bad management, it can happen.

Sony claims that the Vaio division is generating extensive losses and that’s why they’re selling it. Maybe it is, but here are 3 reasons that I can think of why Vaio is making Sony lose money:

  1. Sony is trying to compete with low-cost (and low-quality) computer manufacturers such as Dell, HP, and Lenovo. Sony can do much better if they focus on just creating an excellent product that everyone would be happy to pay thousands of dollars for. But no, they had to produce these cheap $400 laptops just so that they can get a bigger footprint in the market. That’s the result of this strategy.
  2. Sony’s customer support is one of the worst customer support on this planet – if not the worst! Try calling Sony and you’ll most likely get someone from a remote country who can or cannot speak good English and who will probably blame you for the problem that you’re having. If you ever had to call Sony at any point in the past few years, you’ll know exactly what I mean. On the other hand, I don’t think that Sony should or can stand behind a $500 laptop – but the thing is, people expect quality service from Sony because they’re buying a Sony, regardless of the amount of money they paid. This is a huge issue for Sony and another reason of why they shouldn’t compete in the low-end market.

  3. Sony’s stores are another example of bad service. If you want to buy something then you are treated as a king. If you have a problem with one of your products, then you are treated like a beggar. For some reason, not a single person working for Sony (at least here in Canada) understands the concept of “repeat business”.

For these reasons, Sony lost the Vaio line. The Vaio line was doing great when a Vaio laptop would sell for $4,000 and cost only $1,500 to make – not anymore. The profit margin is much lower than before and Sony got stuck with insane customers who think that they have paid a fortune for their $500 laptop. Sony should have kept making exclusive laptops (like the Vaio Z series, which was canceled back in 2012) and should have stayed clear from the low end market.

By the way, Sony’s stock (SNE) is up nearly 6% since the announcement – of course, the market reacts positively when a company sells a division, but the thing is, Sony is worth less now, and not more.

In any case, the Sony Vaio will be no more as of this spring (I don’t know when exactly, but sometime during spring). I don’t know which brand I’m going to buy now for laptops.

Bye Bye Sony Vaio – it was really good while it lasted, and it did last!

This article (as well as all other articles on this website) is an intellectual property and copyright of Fadi El-Eter and can only appear on fadi.el-eter.com.

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