Sony Corporation is a division of the Sony Group holding company and is also involved in its management. Other subsidiaries of the holding are engaged in film production (Sony Pictures Entertainment owns the film studios TriStars Pictures and Columbia Pictures), are responsible for the music sector (Sony Music Entertainment), the financial sector (Sony Financial Holdings), etc. The headquarters of the corporation is located in Tokyo. …
Sony is not just a company name, it is an ideology and even a whole cult. The history of Sony is not only about hard work, but also about devotion, luck and even betrayal of national and family traditions. To understand this story and understand the ideology of the company, it is necessary to start the story from the very beginning – from birth. Unfortunately, the creators of Sony Corporation did not live in our times, but they paved the way that the company still follows.
Akio Morita and Masaru Ibuka
Akio Morita was born on January 26, 1921 in Nagoya, into a family of respectable distillers. His ancestors made a living by making sake – rice vodka; therefore, Akio Morita’s parents hoped to eventually transfer the family business to him. Akio was the eldest son, and in Japan at that time almost all the children of merchants and entrepreneurs followed in the footsteps of their fathers. However, Akio did not want to study the ancient skill and brew sake, as all his relatives did up to and including the fifteenth generation. It was the 20th century, and the boy was interested in mathematics and physics. Oddly enough, the father approved of his son’s decision and allowed him to follow his own path.
Akio Morita and Masaru Ibuka
After graduating from school, Akio entered the Faculty of Physics and Technology at the Imperial University in Osaka. The young physicist was distinguished by a sharp mind, vivid imagination and ease of communication. In 1944, Akio Morita received his diploma. Then he was called up for military service – he ended up in the Marine Corps and even received an officer rank. A few months later he received an invitation to work in the town of Yokosuko, in the aviation research laboratories of the Precision Instrument Company of Japan. The director of the company, Masaru Ibuka, was very interested in talented young scientists and, looking through the lists of University graduates, drew attention to Akio Morita.
Akio Morita and Masaru Ibuka
Masaru Ibuka was born on April 11, 1908 in the town of Nikko, Tochigi Prefecture. In 1933, he graduated from the School of Engineering at Waseda University in Tokyo. His classmates gave him the nickname “genius inventor.” While still a student, Ibuka became the author of a number of fairly large inventions, and in the year of graduation he received a prize at the World Industrial Exhibition in Paris. For some time he worked in the technology department of a company that produced film and photographic film. Ibuka soon founded his own company, which developed thermal guidance systems and portable night vision devices for the military department (some of his employees even had military ranks). Collaboration with Morita turned out to be very fruitful for him: the young physicist was inferior to Ibuka in experience, but was generous with ideas. The Precision Instruments Company was doing well.
Sony’s first product: Rice Cooker (1945)
Sony’s history begins immediately after the end of World War II, when Masaru Ibuka returned to Tokyo in September 1945. To begin with, Masaru and his like-minded people rented the third floor in a shopping center. Ibuki’s office was small, windowless, with poor lighting – only a single light bulb. In addition, the entire building of the shopping center was riddled with deep cracks from numerous Allied air raids. Soon equipment was brought to the new office from the Suzaki plant. Already in October, Ibuka and his partners opened a new division called “Tokyo Tsushin Kenkyujo” or “Tokyo Telecommunications Research Institute”. Despite the great desire to work, no one knew what exactly and how to do it. Oddly enough, but then Japan was on the outskirts of the technological world. While studying the market, Ibuka came to the conclusion that the Japanese were hungry for information, especially international information.
The first reel-to-reel tape recorder Sony G-Type – weight 20 kg (1950)
Ibuka decided that the only chance for success was to start producing special adapters, ready to turn obsolete radio receivers into super receivers capable of receiving all types of waves. The moderate success of the new device allowed two old friends Ibuka and Akio Morita to join forces again. Morita and Ibuka worked together on weapons for the Japanese army, but the war separated them for several years. The production of receivers was going well, but people did not have the money to pay for the services of Ibuka’s company, and then he began to charge in rice, which was more than appropriate in the conditions of hungry Japan. While reselling rice, Ibuka began thinking about home appliances, designing and implementing a rice cooking device. This is how the Tokyo Tsushin Kenkyujo company made its first foray into the household appliances market.
Portable tape recorder Sony H-Type – weight 13 kg (1951)
The rice cooker was sold on the black market through Shozaburo Tachikawa, who was well versed in various financial tricks. The Tachikawa family was engaged in selling whale meat in Hokkaido. Ibuka was their frequent guest, and they loved him so much that as soon as he crossed the threshold of the house, the whole family hid the watch so that Ibuka would not inadvertently steal it. However, this did not interfere with the strong friendship between Ibuka and Tachikawa. In May 1946, Ibuki’s uncle Tamon Maeda became president of the new company. After some thought, Ibuka and Tachikawa decided to join their uncle’s company, which was called Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha (Tokyo Telecommunications Engineering Corporation) or simply Totsuko. The new production did not have specialists, equipment or even money to achieve results, but Ibuka, Tachikawa and young specialists worked long hours.
The first portable receiver made of plastic Sony TR 55 (1955)
Already in May, the Ministry of Communications ordered the young company Totsuko 50 vacuum tubes for volt-ohmmeters. But even on the black market the situation with pipes was complicated. Moreover, Totsuko had big problems with its equipment. For example, special screwdrivers were made from motorcycle pipes found in the ruins of houses, and electrical storage devices were homemade, just like the first communication lines. I had to refuse the order. Great financial difficulties and the transition to new yen created a lot of problems. Be that as it may, the sale of heated pillows brought in sufficient income, although they were sold under the name of Ginza Nessuru Shokai (Ginza Heating Company). Ibuka reasonably believed that the cushions were not reliable enough and could ignite at any moment, ruining the reputation of the young company.
The first video recorder Sony PV 100 (1963)
A year after their use, the pillows began to spark and cause local fires. But no one complained, because the heated pillows were comfortable. The very next year, Ibuka and his colleagues moved to Ginza, where they had an entire building at their disposal. It was small, but convenient enough for mass production. At this time, Kazuo Iwama, a physicist from the University of Tokyo, married Morita’s younger sister and very soon Morita convinced him to join the company. During the same period, NHK (National Broadcasting Station) asked to rebuild military equipment to restore radio broadcasting throughout the country.
Integrated amplifier Sony TA 1120 (1965)
The project was led by Shigeo Shima, whose favorite underpants burned from a spark in Ibuki’s pillow. But at that moment there was no time for a showdown with cowards. Japan needed to recover as quickly as possible. Under the rapid restoration of the country, Shigeo gained access to military developments, which instantly moved into the hands of the Ibuko company. Despite the fact that things were going well with NHK, the owner of the Kichizozi plant soon demanded to vacate the premises. At that time, Japan had problems with electricity, and its overconsumption could lead to a power outage to the entire building, and Ibuki’s company employees worked day and night. So Morita and Ibuka began looking for a new place where they could develop a large and convenient production for everyone.
The first tape recorder with compact cassette Sony TC100 (1966)
Since the company sold a used Datsun in its difficult days, Ibuka and Morita had to look for a new place on their own, shivering from the cold on especially frosty nights. After months of searching, they were able to locate a NEC Corporation warehouse in Shinagawa. Cooperation with the occupying forces allowed the Totsuko company to obtain a recording device. It worked on a metal tape and, thanks to a slight modification by the recently hired Nobutoshi Kihara, was able to write news blocks. The first to be recorded was the victory of Japanese swimmer Hironoshin Furuhashi at a competition in Los Angeles.
First TV Sony TV8 301 (1960)
At the same time, Ibuka, Morita and now Kihara increasingly visited the occupying forces stationed in NHK. On one of these visits they were shown a tape recorder. “This is what we need,” Ibuka said, “let’s make one for the consumer market.” After convincing the officer to show the tape recorder to the engineers at the plant, Ibuta and Morita went to Sozaburo Tochikawa and asked him for 300,000 yen to build their own tape recorder. Having demonstrated the American technique to Tochikawa’s partner, and then taking both of them to a restaurant, Ibuka achieved the desired amount.
The first TV Sony Trinitron KV-1310 (1966)
At that time, the tape recorder was a rarity even in the United States, despite the fact that it was invented in 1936 by German scientists. The next few months were spent making the magnetic powder, which was produced using a regular grill borrowed from the Morita family. Using sprayers, Ibuka and Morita achieved the desired result. Their film could record and play back sound, but success came at a huge cost: there was more magnetic paint on the clothes, floors and walls of the experimenters than on the film itself. And then Ibuka decided to turn to the recently opened Yama-no-ue plant, where the technology of spraying a protective solution had already been mastered.
Cassette tape recorder Sony TC-2860SD (1973)
Ibuka learned somewhere that a comb made from badger hair is ideal for spraying. Kihara bought one for 800 yen, which was a huge sum at that time, and began experimenting. Using two razors 6 mm apart, Kihara created the world’s first paper-cutting machine, which also sprayed magnetic powder. Further experiments showed that the thinner the layer of powder, the higher the sound quality. It was necessary to find a way to thinly spray a magnetic solution. And then he came across an advertisement for Papilio Cosmetics, which advertised its finest face powder. Morita immediately went and met with the president of Papilio Cosmetics, but he turned him down, citing the impossibility of creating such a fine powder. Meanwhile, Kihara had already assembled a strange device, on which he recorded and played the phrase “Honjitsu wa seiten nar” (“Beautiful weather today”).
Cassette tape recorder Sony TC-177SD (1974)
Work on the prototype continued for several months until the first tape recorder appeared in September 1949. In February 1950, A and G prototypes appeared, capable of recording and playing back a film of no more than 30 minutes. The G prototype was registered by “Tapecorder”. And the technology for making the film was called “SONI-TAPE”. After a series of articles about the new miracle device, many became interested in the Totsuko business. Especially Masao Kurahashi, who was then working for the Yagumo Sangyo company, and according to many, the yakuza. By this time, Totsuko’s capital had grown from 3.6 million to 10 million yen. Kurahashi decided to invest 500,000 yen and buy back 10,000 shares at 50 yen per share.
First Betamax VCR Sony SL-6300 (1975)
But first, he needed to look at Totsuko with his own eyes. After a visual demonstration, Kurahashi asked to sell him all the rights to the tape recorder. But the Ibukis refused. Instead, he offered to buy 50 tape recorders at a price of 120,000 yen each. Masao wrote a check for 6 million yen and took it to the Tokugawa family, who were surprised by the acquisition. For the next few months, no one wanted to buy the devices at a price of 168,000 yen each, despite the huge interest in the device. Having worked hard with tape recorders, Kurahashi felt sad, but then an order came from the district court. The first order brought Kuruhashi a profit of 1 million yen. The court, feeling the need for stenographers, agreed and bought 24 tape recorders. Morita was so inspired by Kurahashi’s success that he invited Masao to head the distribution department at Totsuko. Kurahashi worked for the Tokugawa family, but the persistence of Morita and Ibuka did their job, and Kurahashi became part of the company.
Sony EL-7 cassette deck (1976)
In January 1951, Masao Kurahashi became the manager of the Tokyo Recording Company, a subsidiary of Totsuko. In addition, inventor Takeo Tsuchihashi was invited to the company, who tried to bring the tape recorder to perfection. The recording machine constantly chewed the tape and broke down, but even when in working condition, the tape recorder was difficult to use. Morita and Kurahashi sat down to write a promotional poster using the American manual “999 Uses for a Tape Recorder.” The next day, Kihara locked himself in with the rest of the engineers and began creating two new prototypes, which were supposed to be smaller in size and weight (20 kg).
The first Sony Walkman TPS-L2 player (1976)
The H-tape recorder, which appeared on the market in 1951, weighed only 13 kg. As part of the promotional campaign, Kurahashi went on a tour of Japan while Morita tried to convince the Ministry of Education to use his tape recorders in schools. It would be a double whammy. Kuruhashi gave lectures at educational institutions, and Morita put pressure on officials in the ministry. The soon-to-be released P-tape recorder, priced at 75,000 yen, broke all sales records. And not only because of the price, but also because of the excellent service. Buyers did not know how to operate the tape recorder, and it broke. Totsuko performed all repairs free of charge. Thus, Totsuko learned to turn disadvantages into advantages.
First CD player Sony CDP-101 (1982)
As the product became mainstream, Totsuko had trouble meeting consumer demand. Therefore, a small plant was purchased and conveyor production was established. Due to the novelty of production at the new location, fires broke out more than once, but a few bottles of sake calmed the firefighters and resolved all conflicts. But Totsuko had a very small sales network, consisting of only three companies, including the Tokyo Recording Company. This trio was soon joined by Nippon Gakki or Japan Instruments, which already had an established channel for supplying musical instruments to educational institutions. But even an extensive network and good sales could not make Totsuko a sufficiently profitable company.
The first portable CD player Sony D-50 (1984)
It was then that Morita came to the conclusion that it was time to sell his products abroad, outside of Japan. It would be safer for the company. If demand falls in one region, the product could be of value in others, and the larger the company’s sphere of influence, the safer its position. In addition, Totsuko had a patent for magnetic recording, which could help monopolize the market, but she also knew that Matsushita Electric Industorial Co. plans to release his own recording device. But with the advent of competitors’ products, Totsuko’s own sales also increased. So Totsuko learned another lesson: competition in the market stimulates the market and increases sales for all its participants. In addition, Totsuko had a five-year lead over any of its closest competitors.
The first compact video camera Sony CCD V8 (1985)
When Ibuka and Kazuo Iwama read a popular science article in an American magazine about the creation of a transistor at Bell Laboratories, they seriously doubted the possibility of using this invention in everyday life. In March 1952, Masaru Ibuka went to the United States to study the use of tape recorders in everyday life, and at the same time look at how American companies produced them. Ibuka spoke little English, plus he experienced the racial discrimination that reigned in the United States at that time.
The first boombox Sony CFD-5 (1986)
Because he didn’t know about daylight saving time, Masaru missed several important meetings and just walked around Seattle. A few days later he was in New York, where he met with the president of Nissho, Masaichi Nishikawa and his friend Yamada. Plus, he received an offer to use the transistor patent from Western Electric for a small fee of $25,000 (9 million yen). After several sleepless nights, Ibuka tossed and turned and thought about transistors. He tried to meet with Western Electric, but they avoided the meeting, so Ibuka had to return to Japan with germanium diodes and vinyl tablecloth, which were new to the Japanese market. But Masaru also returned with the confidence that transistors are the future.
Children’s series My First Sony (1989)
After consulting with Akio Morita, Ibuka asked his managing director, Koichi Kasahara, for advice. After thinking all night, Koichi decided that transistors were exactly what they should do. Ibuka applied for a license from MITI (Ministry of International Trade and Industry), but was refused, citing the inability of his small factory to set up such production. In addition, large companies like Toshiba Corporation, Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, and Hitachi Ltd were working on transistors under a contract with RCA that required royalties to be paid for any transistor-based product in Japan.
Power amplifier ES series Sony TA-N77ES (1988)
So, one patent from Western Electric Totsuko was clearly not enough. But at this time, Yamada, who had managed to make friends with Ibuka in New York, tried to persuade Western Electric to issue a patent to Totsuko. He soon achieved success and in August 1953, Morita arrived in the United States, where, with the support of Yamada (Morita did not speak English), he signed a contract with Western Electric. Then Morita visited Germany, the homeland of Philips, Holland, and, inspired by the feat of Dr. Philips, returned to Japan. Western Electric offered to make hearing aids based on transistors, but it was stupid, and then Ibuka said: “Let’s make a radio!”
Despite the skepticism of others about the capabilities of such a small company as Totsuko, Ibuka did not give up. He convinced his employees and creditors that it was necessary to take risks, that transistors were the future. A team of the company’s best specialists studied a book on transistors that Morita brought from the USA. In January 1954, Iwama went to the United States to learn a little more about transistors by visiting the Western Electric plant. This information was enough for Totsuko to create his prototype. Iwama wrote down his observations on paper and sent them to Totsuko specialists. A week before his return, the first Japanese transistor was ready. Now it was necessary to get a loan and set up production. Ibuka reached an agreement with the management of the newly opened plant in Sendai and invited a prominent scientist, Professor Takasaki, who also possessed several important patents, to join his company.
First MD Walkman Sony MZ-1 (1995)
The Sendai plant employed 27 people and was surrounded on all sides by rice fields, so much so that they had to wear high rubber shoes to avoid getting their feet wet. As new tasks emerged, the plant was re-equipped for new production until it was finally ready for the production of transistors. At the launch banquet for the first transistor, Ibuka, Kasahara and Ibaraga of Mita Musen decided to name their transistors with the suffix “Seki”, which means “stone” in Japanese. By the end of October, the first transistors and devices based on them appeared on sale. 2T-14 transistors cost about 4000 yen, and 1T23 diodes cost about 320 yen. Despite the high price, they sold just fine. But the radio market was flooded with vacuum tube receivers. There were even portable options. In addition, at Christmas 1954, the American company Regency released the first transistor receiver, TR-1, with an output of 10mW. Totsuko really wanted to, but they never became the first. They lost this round to the Americans.
Minidisc deck ES series SONY MDS-JA3ES (1996)
Morita was preparing for his second trip to the United States, where he planned to conclude agreements and demonstrate a prototype of his successor. But besides business communication, the company faced another task. Americans could not pronounce not only Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo, but even Totsuko. And so there was no point in selling a product from a company with an unpronounceable name. Mori and Ibuka wanted to change the name to something that would be easy to pronounce and remember. A two-letter company would be excellent, but unrealistic. Three letters like RCA, NBC, CBS and NHK seemed more attractive. Of course, Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo could have been shortened to TTK, but that was too similar to TKK, the Japanese railway company.
The first DVD player Sony DVP-S7000 (1996)
But there was still a problem with pronunciation and then, after thinking a little, they settled on the Latin word “sonus”, from which the words “sound” and “speed” came, shortening it to Sony. The Totsuko company now had an excellent international name. Within two months, Morita was able to secure a contract to produce 1,000 microphones and ten tape recorders. Additionally, Bulova placed an order for 100,000 TR-52 transistor receivers, but refused to use the Sony name. And then Morita refused the order and returned home. Morita wanted to sell products exclusively under his own name.
The first home robot Sony AIBO-ERS110 (1999)
It was April 1955. And then disaster struck. The first 100 receivers, made of white plastic and in the style of New York skyscrapers, melted from the terrible heat. So Morita learned another lesson – the radio must be made of durable materials. The TR-55, completed in August, was just such a radio. The first transistor radio in Japan. However, at that time there were radios in 74 percent of Japanese homes, so this was a risky move for Ibuka’s company. Therefore, Totsuko decided to gather all of its competitors from Matsushita, Sanyo, Hayakawa Electric Corporation, Toshiba Corporation, Victor Company of Japan Ltd., and Standard Co Ltd. and show them your transistors. The technology was truly excellent, and competitors agreed to purchase transistors from Totsuko.
Headphones Sony Qualia 010 (2003)
It was necessary to expand production, and Ibuka decided to hire more diligent women. A dormitory was built especially for them. By 1956, the company’s capital reached 100 million yen. During the same period, the TR-81 transistor receiver came to Japanese schools. And already in March 1957, the TR-63 pocket receiver saw the light of day. But the price of 13,800 yen was quite high and equal to the average salary at that time in Japan. But Totsuko did not despair and even hung up a neon Sony sign in Sukiyaabashi. The sign looked impressive and even more impressive were the letters, each of which weighed 262.5 kg. Moreover, the cost of this neon installation was 20 million yen. One way or another, the sign was shown on television on Christmas night, and Ibuka was pleased. The brand slowly became recognizable. In January 1958, Totsuko officially became SONY. Thus began a new era in the history of the company, which produced tape recorders and transistor radios. It became a corporation.
First e-book Sony Librie (2004)
“We will take over the whole world,” Morita said at a meeting of all his employees and colleagues. “That is why we are going through all these hardships, turning ourselves into Sony Corporation.” And these were not just words. Sony managed to do a lot over the next 40 years. Transistor receivers were sold in Germany, Britain and the USA. In addition, the reported theft of 4,000 receivers allowed Sony to make headlines in Western newspapers. The new brand instantly became recognizable. After all, no one will steal bad equipment. SONY branches opened outside Japan. In two years from 1958 to 1960, 500 thousand copies of the portable radio were sold, but this was not enough.
Top AV amplifier Sony TA-DA9000ES (2005)
Sony was looking in a new direction. And it was television. In 1961, the first portable TV, TV8-301, appeared. This was followed in 1968 by the first Trinitron color television. Already in 1971, the first color video cassette was introduced, four years later, the Betamax VCR, the world’s first video recorder, matured in SONY laboratories, and 1979 brought the world the famous Walkman. This player sold 100 million copies worldwide, becoming the Japanese company’s best-selling device. But SONY was not going to stop there. In 1981, the first electronic camera was released, in 1982, the first CD player, in 1985, the first digital VTR, and finally, in 1989, SONY produced a 3.5-inch disk drive especially for IBM. And, of course, we should not forget about 1995, when SONY entered the unexplored market of game consoles with the PlayStation system.
The first Blu-Ray player Sony BDP-S1 (2006)
In January 1989, following the acquisition of CBS Records Inc. and the creation of Sony Music Entertainment, followed by the 1989 purchase of Columbia Pictures. SONY has finally decided to gain a foothold in the entertainment market. Negotiations with Nintendo to produce a 16bit Super Famicom expansion had been going on for a long time, and SONY had full access to Nintendo’s new technologies. The latter was confident in SONY, since it made no attempts to invade the home entertainment systems market. But working increasingly with Nintendo, SONY realized that its own gaming system could bring in significantly more profit. Long legal battles with Nintendo quickly ended with the license being bought out, and in 1993 SONY released the PS-X or simply PlayStation.
The first version of the Sony PlayStation game console (1993)
More than $300 million was spent on developing the system, but it quickly paid off. By August 1998, the system had sold over 40 million copies worldwide. The release of the Sony PlayStation 2 in March 1999 in Japan, and only on October 26, 2000 in America, only strengthened Sony’s position in the entertainment market. This 128-bit game console, thanks to good support from developers and a professional marketing campaign, easily crossed the 60 million mark back in the spring of 2003, preparing to hit the 80 million mark in the next few months. But SONY decided not to stop there. This is how two more consoles appeared, PSX and PSP. PSX, which combined a DVD recorder and gaming system, and PSP, which was a portable gaming system and player in one package. The main events in the history of the Sony Corporation 1946 Formation of a company called “Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo” 1950 Invention of Japan’s first domestic sound recorder “G-Type” 1955 Japan’s first transistor radio TR-55 1955 First use of the name Sony as a brand 1960 First in world’s transistor television 1963 World’s first transistor video cassette recorder 1968 Sony UK Ltd founded. in the UK Commencement of production of the Trinitron color television picture tube 1971 Introduction of the U-matic format – the world’s first professional cassette recording system 1972 Sony wins its first Emmy Award, 1st of 15 subsequent ones 1974 Opening of a color TV manufacturing plant in Wales, UK 1975 Betamax video recording format; consumer video cassette recorder 1977 Launch of the world’s first 1-inch broadcast video recorder 1979 Launch of the Walkman personal stereo recorder 1980 Sony introduced the Betacam video recording format 1982 CD player 1982 Launch of the world’s first audio CD player 1983 Sony’s first demonstration of high-definition video 1985 Video 8 video recording format – monoblock 8 mm camcorder 1987 DAT digital tape recorder 1987 Sony introduced the Betacam SP format 1988 Mavica electronic camera 1989 Compact monoblock 8 mm camcorder 1989 Sony acquires a film company Columbia Pictures Entertainment Inc. 1990 36-inch HD Trinitron consumer color television 1991 Kirara Basso series with Super Trinitron picture tube 1992 Minidisc (MD) system 1993 Video recording format Digital Betacam – broadcast component digital video cassette recorder
1994 First video conferencing system introduced, PlayStation launched
1995 Plasmatron technology, flat panel display, consumer digital camcorder Digital Handycam, Naming DVD format
1996 Sony introduced Betacam SX and DVCAM formats
1996 Glasstron – personal LCD monitor , Cyper-Shot digital camera, VAIO Personal Computer, FD Trinitron, flat-screen picture tube
1997 DVD video player
1998 Memory Stick, integrated memory card for recording data in various devices (September)
1999 Super Audio CD players (May) , entertainment robot AIBO (June), Memory Stick Walkman, Memory Stick (December)
1999 Official presentation of the MPEG-2 production system based on the MPEG IMX
2000 format Launched production of the PlayStation 2 game console
2001 Demonstration of the InfostickT BluetoothT module at CES
2002 First release of phones Sony Ericsson.
2002 Aiwa Co., Ltd. was acquired.
2004 Financial holding company Sony Financial Holdings Inc. founded.
In 2013, the joint venture Sony Olympus Medical Solutions Inc. was founded. with the Japanese company Olympus Corporation.
2014 The division for the production of personal computers under the VAIO brand was sold to another Japanese company, Japan Industrial Partners. Some selected brands of Sony Sony α (Alpha) Sony BRAVIA Sony Cyber-shot Sony Entertainment Television Sony Mobile Communications Sony Music Entertainment Sony Handycam (English) Sony Pictures Sony PlayStation Sony Walkman Sony Xperia Subsidiaries Sony EMCS Corporation (Japan) Sony Semiconductor Corporation (Japan) Sony Marketing (Japan) Inc. (Japan) Sony Mobile Communications Inc. (Japan) Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (Japan) Sony Visual Products Inc. (Japan) Sony Video & Sound Products Inc. (Japan) Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc. (Japan) Sony Financial Holdings Inc. (Japan, 60% share) Sony Life Insurance Co., Ltd. (Japan) Sony Bank Inc. (Japan) Sony Corporation of America (USA) Sony Electronics Inc. (USA) Sony Computer Entertainment America LLC (USA) Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. (USA) Sony Music Entertainment (USA) Sony Europe Limited (UK) Sony Computer Entertainment Europe Limited (UK) Sony Global Treasury Services Plc (UK)
Sony Overseas Holding BV (Netherlands)
Sony Mobile Communications AB (Sweden)
Sony Electronics Asia Pacific Pte. Ltd. (Singapore)
Sony (China) Limited (China)