Sony bomby-batteries pre-fingered
Market stitch-up mucho?
The US Department of Justice is considering a full-blown investigation into Sony's rechargeable batteries.
Sony told Bloomberg that it had received a request for information on 3 May but declined further comment. Such a request is normally part of early DoJ probing - short of formal and public investigation.
Presumably the DoJ has concerns that Sony might have been abusing its strong position, although to be fair Sony has watched its share of the market fall in recent years. This is at least in part because the market has changed more quickly than Sony.
The Japanese giant has made noises about shifting into vehicle batteries but hsa been slow to move into the market.
Sony also suffered blowback from the recall of exploding batteries - both in its own machines and those sold by Apple, HP and Dell.
The electronics giant is also being probed for its role in the optical drive market. ®
More info please
The article doesn't explain why they're looking into Sony batteries. What's the problem with them?
You say that there was an exploding battery problem in the past, is it still the same problem?
Please fill in the gaps :)
Not sure that there is a monopoly
There are a couple of points. Firstly Sony were the first to commercialise Li-Ion tech (and also currently do a lot of research), and so you would expect them to have a bit of a lead.
Secondly, there are a large number of other suppliers of Li-Ion cells. If you go to China, you can find them almost anywhere. A lot of the other suppliers tend to be cheaper (or a lot cheaper); although the adage of you get what you pay for is significant here.
Maybe there are issues with the policy of Sony to only sell the cells to approved packagers; which could be seen as using their cell manufacturing position to push their packaging operations, but they do certify 3rd party packagers, and as history has seen, the packaging and electronics around the packs make a significant difference to their safety, and so should be done properly.
However I've been out of that business for a couple of years, so maybe something has changed?