Does The Return Of VAIO Signal A Premium PC Market?
Separated from former owner Sony, the transformation of VAIO from product range to PC manufacturer will be complete when the company re-launches in the US courtesy of an exclusive deal to put its products into Microsoft stores.
One thing that has been missing from the PC market since Sony abandoned it has been an OEM that can go head to head with Apple in design terms. VAIO has been a watch-word for beautifully designed hardware in the past and if the new owner's 'Made in Japan' philosophy pays off it can be again.
Hopefully the new company, shorn of the baggage of the Sony meltdown, is lean enough to survive on the much smaller revenues that being a niche player will bring. The suggestion that the company will only offer two machines suggests it probably can. It will give us a chance to see whether PC buyers are prepared to pay a premium for good design or whether those prepared to pay that little bit more will always gravitate towards Apple.
Having a heritage probably won't be a big factor in how the market receives the new machines, but I have good memories of VAIOs of the past and would be pleased to see the brand succeed.