Robin Harding

Robin Harding is the FT's US economics editor, based in Washington. Prior to this, he was based in Tokyo, covering the Bank of Japan and Japan's technology sector, and in London as an economics leader writer. Robin studied economics at Cambridge and has a masters in economics from Hitotsubashi University, where he was a Monbusho scholar. Before joining the FT, Robin worked in asset management and banking.

Robin Harding

Sony's 11

In May 2008, chairman and chief executive Sir Howard Stringer said that, within the next twelve months, Sony would launch a 27″ television based on OLED – organic light emitting diode – technology.

More than twelve months later, with no 27″ version released and Sony showing only 21″ prototypes, it’s time to ask what happened. 

Robin Harding

The restructuring that Sony announced on Tuesday – 8,000 job losses plus another 8,000 temporary workers, with five or six factory closures – has been criticised as light on specifics. The goal is to save Y100bn in the 2010 financial year, but there is no estimate of the cost, and little detail on which factories will close.Until Sony makes its intentions clear, all of its factory employees will feel under threat, but a few more details have now emerged. 

Robin Harding

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9lHhBQJ4gYE[/youtube]

One Namco Bandai engineer I spoke to had a decided view on this year’s Tokyo Game Show: “Capcom were the winners.” 

Robin Harding

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4uToBarLr_U[/youtube]

If this was the Tokyo Game Show without the general public then there are going to be crush injuries on Saturday. 

Robin Harding

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=amVqnCw55n4[/youtube]

This week’s CEATEC show in Tokyo showed that, while the Japanese mobile handset market may be in a slump, it is still the world’s most innovative. 

Robin Harding

The joys of tape - Getty ImagesObsolete technologies such as film never die, they just go back to the lab to reincarnate in a new application.

Films and tapes are rapidly going the way of the dodo: audio tape was wiped out by compact disc, DVD has all but finished the video cassette, and digital cameras are hunting down the last few surviving models that use film. But the businesses that perfected magnetic tape and photographic film are still around – although sometimes in reduced circumstances – and they are busy thinking of new ways to use the stuff.