APPLE BUYS SONY
Call me a dreamer, call me an idealist, call me crazy but this headline doesn't seem all that ridiculous to me.
On this very same day in 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King made his famous "I Have a Dream" speech and while I have no intention of ever comparing myself to Dr. King, I can't help but day dream about what an Apple-Sony marriage would look like.
With the recent spate of mergers we've seen in the industry, the troubles that traditional Japanese manufacturers have faced and the threat of competition coming from non-traditional hardware players like Google, Amazon and Facebook, something drastic has to happen.
Why does Apple and Sony make sense?
1. DESIGN - Sony and Apple fundamentally both are companies that lend their origins to being on the cutting edge of design. It is hard to argue that Sony in its heyday had products that looked just fabulous and Apple is legendary for their design elements today.
2. WHAT NEXT? - Sony has had a troubling few years and various questions have been asked for Sony regarding what it can do to improve itself going forward. In a post Steve Jobs era, Apple will also have the same questions asked of them and combining their strengths like may mean they can be a formidable powerhouse going forward.
3. TELEVISION - Apple's attempts to make a foray into TV haven't exactly been what they expected. Apple TV has been demonstrated at various Apple events but somehow has never left anyone really excited. Sony at their core knows televisions but has lost their way with the onslaught that they're facing from various Korean (and possibly in future Chinese brands). An Apple television powered by Sony makes sense. With stories starting to circulate that Sony could look at moving out of the television business by even possibly selling this unit to a Chinese brand, it could be something for Apple to look at.
4. APPLE STORES - Apple has been the envy of the industry with their retail roll-out strategy. The experience of an Apple Store is unparalleled and although Sony has many of their own retail outlets, they could do with an Apple makeover. Further, Apple could definitely sell a lot more products from their own stores which are manufactured by Sony.
5. COOL FACTOR - This is something again that both brands share. Buying Sony was cool in the 1980's, 1990's and early 2000's. Buying Apple is today cooler.
6. THE CASH FACTOR - With the recent revelation that Apple has got more cash in its reserves than the US Government, we know that Apple can in true Jerry Maguire fashion, "show Sony the money."
7. SONY MUSIC & PICTURES - Apple is the largest seller of music in the world today through iTunes. Sony has a formidable music and movie library that could give Apple the edge over other competitors in the industry today.
8. ACCESS JAPAN - The desire of every American brand has been to make it big in Japan. Some could argue Apple has already done this but how much deeper could Apple entrench themselves in the Japanese domestic market by leveraging on the Sony relationship? Can Apple succeed where the American automobile industry failed?
9. WICKED PRODUCTS - One can only imagine what the combined R&D strengths of Apple and Sony could produce. Apple is creative, Sony can be creative. Together they could be a tag team that rips the competition to shreds.
10. SAMSUNG - Apple's biggest threat these days is Samsung. This is clear from all the legal juggernaut we've been seeing in the press. Sony's biggest threat in consumer electronics is also Samsung. If the cultural differences that divide Apple and Sony threatened to derail such a deal, the strength they could derive from each other in the battle against Samsung could neutralize any such differences.
11. GAMING - Apple has with the iPhone changed gaming. Sony had at one time changed gaming with the the PlayStation and PSP consoles that they had. If Apple and Sony can work out a way to combine this know-how, they could give the likes of Microsoft, Nintendo and Google, more sleepless nights going forward.
I know what I've just said is crazy. I just want to create a stir and make a thought provoking statement or two. With everything that's happened in the industry of late, you can't help but wonder what could happen next. Apple has made it a habit of keeping us guessing and with this write-up, may be I've got you guessing on what Apple could be next as well.
Please note all thoughts mentioned on this blog are personal views and not given by me in any official capacity. If quoting from this blog, please quote me in a personal capacity only and not in my official capacity.