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Sony Businesses Cellphones Handhelds

Sony Buys Ericsson Out For $1.47 Billion 64

Posted by timothy
from the pocket-change dept.
First time accepted submitter Diggester writes with this snippet from PC World: "Sony took a page out of the playbooks of Microsoft and Apple, announcing it would buy out its smartphone partner, Ericsson, to more tightly integrate smartphones with Sony's laptops, tablets and televisions. The move gives Sony complete control over its smartphone business, while Ericsson will now focus more broadly on wireless connectivity for products beyond mobile handsets. Sony purchased Ericsson's share of the Sony Ericsson partnership for about $1.47 billion. Rumors about Sony's takeover of Sony Ericsson surfaced in early October."
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Sony Buys Ericsson Out For $1.47 Billion

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  • Given Sony's past habits, does this mean a rapid spin away from unlocked bootloaders on their phones (unless perhaps someone gets their hands on the key for some Sony-installed rootkit that might be installed in the factory?)
    • by Baloroth (2370816)

      Judging from Sony's previous attempts [wikipedia.org] at "security" (actually, this "CAPTCHA" [sony.com] is even funnier), I don't think hackers have much to worry about.

      • by nschubach (922175)

        actually, this "CAPTCHA" [sony.com] is even funnier

        SLBVR isn't funny!

        [but document.getElementById('captchdiv').getElementsByTagName('b') is a start ...]

      • by nwf (25607)

        That's hilarious. Generating a CAPTCHA using HTML tables. It's not like computers can't parse HTML (assuming you aren't using IE). Good thing they have (commented!) JavaScript to disable copy and paste. Must have been done by an intern as an inside joke or something.

      • by slater86 (1154729)
        for what its worth, solve it from the command line in bash with the following.
        wget -qO - http://pro.sony.com/bbsc/jsp/forms/generateCaptcha.jsp |grep "</b></span></td>" |sed -e s/\<b\>//g |sed s/\</" "/g |awk '{print $1}'
        (Yes its a bit messy but what do you want for 5 mins work.)

        Anyone else want to have a go? (in perl maybe?)
  • The smart-phone scene has been a little boring of late..
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by poetmatt (793785)

      smart phone scene has been boring? Have you even looked at where we've gone in 3 years? we went from "you have phones" to "you have phones that can emulate SNES" to "you have phones that can emulate playstation games" to "you have phones that can almost rival the PS3". in 3 years. You can get RAGE on your smartphone.

      If you think the scene is boring, you might want to actually look around first. It's entirely possible smartphones will have more processing power than next gen consoles by the time they come o

      • by epine (68316)

        It's entirely possible smartphones will have more processing power than next gen consoles by the time they come out.

        Bzzzzzzt. Thanks for playing.

        The improvements are tremendous, but the Cortex-A15 Processor [arm.com] almost certainly falls short of the original CoreDuo.

        Trinity packaged in a quad-channel socket FM2 with integrated Radeon 7000 graphics core is about the level of performance I expect from the next generation consoles by the time they arrive.

        Sony originally hoped to make Cell a one-chip solution. But

  • Probably a good move. With a large portfolio of consumer products this was much more likely than Ericsson buying from Sony.

    Indeed, the PSP could use some of the Sony Ericsson wizardry.

    • by Gravatron (716477)
      The PSP is on it's way out, and the PSVita is basically a tablet with physical controls. I'm not seeing anything S-Eric could really have added.
    • by jd (1658)

      Erlang is an Ericsson product, and they've released or assisted on [ericsson.com] a number of other products. Sony - well, they're famous for closed products, rootkits and the walkman. I'm not overly convinced I trust those guys to honour prior license agreements (there are plenty of products that were GPL that have been made proprietary with the open source variant deleted from the catalogue completely). I am very concerned.

  • I'm not really surprised, but for a company with a long, high-profile track record of treating their customers' privacy and property rights the way a starving Doberman treats a pork chop it's terribly depressing to see that so many people still give them so much money they can afford billion dollar acquisitions.

    P.S. By property rights I mean the constant fucking around with firmware to revoke features that were once specifically advertised (OtherOS in PS3, etc.) and other related sleazy behaviors. I could
  • 10 years ago , Apple was no where in smartphone game and Ericsson was in Top 5 smartphone makers. Now apple is one of top 5 vendors and Ericsson no longer makes phone.
    • by aliquis (678370)

      10 years ago Sony-Ericsson was #3.

      Right now they are #10 @ 1.7% market share.

      Great cooperation on Ericssons part .. Have they ever been #1? #2? Bigger than Nokia?

      Regardless how much did Sony actually contribute in the first place? Designs? Walkman brand? How much market share did they had compare to Ericsson?

      It's kinda sad.

      And then there's everything Ericsson has "given away" to Huawei..

      • by Björn (4836) *
        Well Ericsson is still the worlds largest mobile telecommunications equipment vendor (35%).
        • by aliquis (678370)

          And Huawei is almost as big instead of being more or less irrelevant, with Banverket as their first international prestige/referense customer ..

    • by rtb61 (674572)

      But then Apple also does not make a phone either http://texyt.com/iphone+manufacturer+supplier+assembler+not+apple+00113 [texyt.com]. So what's your point, other than market leaders change really rapidly in consumer products, so winner now but dead in five years time. Apple is managing to do a pretty good job of mucking up it's brand at the moment, si yeah likely is in five years time, things will be the way they were five years ago.

  • No wait, that was something different.

    • by Plammox (717738)
      I loved the two Ericsson/Sony Ericsson phones I had (T65 and K750i). Unfortunately, they both died prematurely from mechanical failures. To this date I still haven't managed to kill my Nokia, HTC or iPhone. So yes, good in the user sense, but the SE-mechanical quality really isn't that good.
      • by kukulcan (1440401)
        I bought a T68i in 2001 i think. It still works.

        My wife had a SE (don't know the model) from 2004, which she used for about 3 years. It is being used since then by my mother in law. That's 7 years of daily use!

        I believe SE had better quality than Nokia in the early 2000's.

      • by Hentes (2461350)

        True, both my Ericssons started having mechanical problems after about 4 years, although I was about to buy new ones anyway.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I can tell you that this comes as no big surprise. Both Ericsson and Sony Ericsson are incredibly slow moving companies with way to much bureaucracy. They have lots of engineers who are very skilled at implementing specifications to the letter, but not at adapting to change. Last I heard from them, they were still using a 10 year old version of ClearCase as the main VCS, which had to be restarted about twice a day because there were so many problems with it. Upgrading was completely out of the question. It

  • When did Microsoft or Apple buy their smartphone partner? How is this a page out of their play books? Why is Apple or Microsoft mentioned in this article? Everything isn't always about them.
    • by Daetrin (576516)
      Well Microsoft did give a billion dollars to Nokia for them to make Windows phones, but they didn't actually buy it outright. iPhone has been all Apple's since day one, they never bought out a partner that i'm aware of. In fact the only company i can think of recently that's actually bought out a company that they were partners with in making smartphones is Google with Motorola, which wasn't even mentioned in the blurb.

      But even if the circumstances aren't exactly the same there certainly is a general tren
  • Sony Ericcson... I used to halfway hate that company...
  • I have to wonder if this will mean the North American presence for Sony(Ericsson) phones will increase, as well as end missed release dates and vaporware. What may happen to the Java Platform operating system present on the majority of SonyEricsson "feature" phones, like the WalkMan and CyberShot phones prior to Android. I am also hoping that making customizations will still be easily done and sites which provide services or support for customizations, unlocking, firmware flashing, ELF mods, and so on wil

  • Or, if you want to listen to music you've already purchased, you need to manually enter your DRM code...

    Or, you'll need your phone to access Sony Online, and when they get hacked again, you'll have your phone number all over the world...

    Or they promise a phone that runs linux, and halfway through your contract, they remove linux...

    I mean, this is *SONY*... If there's a way to screw this up, they will find it.

  • *puts on glasses*

    Sony lost their Erection [aaanything.net].

    YEAAAH!

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Sony bought out Ericssons share in the SonyEricsson joint venture -

    This is the portion of GIANT EQUIPMENT manufacturer Ericsson which made mobile handsets

    Sony did *not* buy Ericsson itself.

    see what else ericsson does here:

    http://www.ericsson.com/ourportfolio/products

  • Ericsson has never been good at consumer electronics. The main reason for not quitting phone making 10 years ago was to secure supply of phones compatible with the mobile network standards they were advocating.

"The eleventh commandment was `Thou Shalt Compute' or `Thou Shalt Not Compute' -- I forget which." -- Epigrams in Programming, ACM SIGPLAN Sept. 1982

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