Sony who has resorted to using third party manufacturers in China and Taiwan to make their Bravia LCD TVs, has now licensed LCD TV technology from Vizio a US TV manufacturer for use in some of their LCD TVs in an effort to avoid being sued.Last week in Australia, the Japanese company offered a 3 year warranty on their Bravia LCD TVs until Christmas, in an effort to instillinstil confidence back into their brand. They also went out of their way to hype up the technology being used inside their Bravia LCD TV’s which now appear to be more Sony badge with some of the Bravia LCD TVs, than Sony technology.
In the past the company has manufactured a lot of their products in Japan, but this changed when they started haemorrhaging billions.
This resulted in Sony factories being shut, tens of thousands of Sony employees laid off and the company moving to low cost manufacturers in an effort to turn around their fortunes in the fast growing flat panel TV market.
Despite this, Sony Australia is still asking a premium for their Bravia LCD TV’s.
Last night, Vizio announced that they would not sue Sony for breaching Vizio LCD TV patents and that the Sony Corporation had become a licensee under VIZIO’s LCD TV patent portfolio.
It was also announced that the US company, that outsells Sony in the US flat panel TV market, had successfully resolved its ongoing patent disputes with the Japanese company, who on Friday will announce massive losses.
Instead, Sony will now licence Vizio LCD TV technology for several of their Bravia LCD TV’s.
In an interview with ChannelNews Rob Brinkman, VIZIO V.P. of Operations and Administration said that “Having successfully resolved the disputes we had with Sony, we shall continue to aggressively protect our rights and actively expand VIZIO’s licensing program. As an owner of patent rights and as a licensee of legitimate patent right held by others, VIZIO respects intellectual property and we expect our competitors to do the same,” added Mr. Brinkman.
Brinkman said that he was not prepared to talk about which Sony Bravia TV’s would include the Vizio patented technology.
However he did say “We are pleased with the result of our patent licensing efforts. It further demonstrates the technical strength and value of VIZIO’s patent portfolio. VIZIO continues to expand its intellectual property including the development of new technologies that will be implemented in VIZIO’s products available later this year and beyond. “We are excited about the new line of VIZIO HDTV’s which will have technically advanced features. We are committed to providing the best HDTV experience possible to our customers,” Brinkman added.
Currently Vizio is suing LG over the use of their patented LCD TV technology.