Sony signs Six for Stick

Memory Stick standard drive begins in earnest

Sony today announced six other Japanese electronics companies have licensed its Memory Stick solid-state floppy disk technology. Aiwa, Fujitsu, Sanyo, Sharp, Kenwood and Pioneer will variously produce, promote and support in other devices Sony's answer to Compact Flash. That's a long way from the industry standard status Sony wants Memory Stick to attain, but definitely a step in the right direction. Sony's aim would have made the broad licensing of Memory Stick inevitable. The company clearly views Memory Stick as a mass-market storage system no different -- in marketing terms -- than cassettes, DAT, MiniDiscs or CD-RWs: standard formats for recording audio, video and/or computer data. Last week, Sony unveiled its Memory Stick-based Walkman, designed to play digital music tracks downloaded from the Internet. The company already supports Memory Stick in its Vaio notebook PC line and in various digital camera and camcorder products. ®

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