Page 2: Anticipation with innovation
In order to harness the potential of digital technology for the purposes of providing enjoyment to people around the world, Sony has developed a concept called Digital Dream Kids. Sony wants to identify the dreams of the young, digitally literate generation of consumers and translate them into unique, fun products and exciting applications, supplying products that fulfil the dreams of their customers. To achieve this requires a seamless merging of content, hardware and technology. This concept has become central to the corporate strategy for Sony.
The key to success in this challenging and highly competitive technological marketplace is effective innovation and the continual development of new products. All new product development has to go through a number of stages. New products have to be conceived, a process of imagination, creativity and inspiration. These new ideas must then be screened and evaluated from both production and financial perspectives. Successful ideas will be developed in the laboratory and undergo thorough test marketing before they can be launched. Market research is crucially important throughout these processes, both of the potential market and of the product, but often with such innovative products as the PlayStation and Walkman, Sony is anticipating a desire that consumers have yet to appreciate. Sony has literally created the market for these products. Market research is vital in keeping in touch with consumers’ dreams.
Not only do the Sony designers and engineers have to be of the highest calibre in their own fields, but they must also be able to empathise with the Digital Dream Kids. All research and development is carried out using Sony’s ‘earth-conscious approach’, designed to use fewer natural resources in production and operation, and in line with the overall corporate mission statement. Research is both short term, looking at specific products, and with a long term view, investigating, for example, new materials or bionic processes.