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Sony's 10 biggest tech disasters

The products that didn't quite make it

Sony's created some iconic gadgets from the Walkman to the PlayStation. But not everything launched by the consumer electronics manufacturer is a success. Here's 10 products that didn't quite make it.


In 2003, battered by fierce competition, Sony sought to reinvigorate its brand with Qualia - a line of expensive products that emphasised Sony's engineering prowess. Among the featured products were the tiny Qualia 016 digital camera at $3,220 (£2,000), the Qualia 004 high-definition projector for $20,000 (£12,481), a Super Audio CD player, and a Trinitron monitor. To buy one of these items, you had to make an appointment at a Qualia showrooms or have a 'Qualia concierge' visit you. But the concierge mostly stood around waiting for calls that never came, and Sony quietly killed the line in 2005.

Sony PSX

In 2003, Sony's PSX jammed a PlayStation 2 and a digital video recorder into a single box. You could play PS2 games and record TV shows onto hard disk or DVD, but this only-in-Japan device was heavy, much bigger than a PlayStation 2, and far more expensive than the PS2 game console. Compared to digital video recorders of the time, its price was attractive, but that selling point wasn't enough to attract consumers.


The Sony Mylo attempted to do the same things as the T-Mobile Sidekick, which, in 2006,  was one of the most popular mobile phones in the US. It had a full keyboard for text messaging, could access email, linked to AOL and MSN instant messaging and included a digital camera. Despite the fact the Mylo worked only on Wi-Fi, it included Skype software plus a web browser and a messaging client. Unfortunately, the lack of a cellular connection hobbled the device just as it has the iPod Touch. A second-generation Mylo launched in 2008; but it, too, failed to catch on.


One of the quirkiest devices ever to emerge from Sony, the Rolly 'audio entertainment player' rocked and rolled to your music. Two motorised rings around its egg-shaped body enabled it to spin in time to a song played from two speakers mounted at either end of its body. Users could program their own routines and share them online, too. The Rolly always drew a crowd, but few people bought it. Sony released an updated version a year after its 2007 launch, but the Rolly didn't live to see a third edition.


  1. The products that didn't quite make it
  2. Qualia
  3. PSP Go

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