August 5, 2013
Sony Corporation has lost money five years in a row. However, during both this May and August Sony announced good news: it swung back to a profit in its fiscal fourth quarter (FYQ4 ended on March 31st) and fiscal first quarter (FYQ1 ended on June 30th). The main contribution to this new profitability is “lifted by the first black ink in 3 years at its long-struggling TV business” as indicated by Wall Street Journal on August 1.
So far, I think the new CEO Kazuo Hirai is steering Sony in the right direction, and emerging display and touch technologies are playing a key role:
- As we covered in the monthly “Touch and Emerging display report”, Sony has released several 4K TVs. Sony has adopted QD Vision’s quantum dots on some of its TVs for better color and lower power consumption.
- Sony is still manufacturing AMOLED professional monitors and successfully selling these at high price, leading to profitability
- Sony is planning a flexible e-Paper display (from E Ink) tablet with pen-writing function by end of this year.
- Sony added more pen-writing notebook PCs.
- Recently Sony has unveiled SmartWatch 2 with a larger 1.6” 220×176 touch display (the original SmartWatch has a 1.3” 128X128 OLED display).
Figure: Sony upcoming flexible display tablet with pen
Photo by: Touch Display Research Inc.
Although a profitable quarter is good news, the profit of FYQ1 is only 3.5 billion Yen, a 0.2% profit margin. It is still left to be seen if Sony can maintain profitability the entire fiscal year.
Thanks for reading,
Jennifer and team