Thursday, September 16, 2010

VAIO: brand of the brass?

Sony Center by Avid(previously Avid Sony Shop), my humble root, where I previously work as a Product Management Officer for five years is where we went to hunt for a bargain(to reasonably priced) VAIO laptop for a friend, Clarence. Yes, we have found a whole gamut of them sitting on the Avid shelves. We have haggled the price, beefed up the specs, and squeeze for the best value deal.

Since VAIO laptop is naturally pricey, just as how natural it is for the carabao to have four feet, the deal didn't flourish into a successful sale. Instead, it has become a repartee of old friendship. I ended up talking with the Branch Head, relishing our hey days and what-could-have-been moments.

VAIO is insanely priced. In fact, I remember one Sony executive(name withheld) who said " if we make it, people buy it." I have been surrounded with Sony lifestyle and broadcast products for the past five years. They have been known to produce high quality craftsmanship and a excellent design. But I don't know why it has never succeeded in driving its own following the way the Mac does. Maybe because at the end of the day, it is still powered by Windows? The way everyone is?

But the VAIO is a laptop so adorable that had it not been for my Mac, I would have gotten it. My only existing gripe with VAIO is that most of its notebooks have a mediocre battery life.

Next to VAIO would be a Toshiba, but I ended up having three Toshiba laptops in my lifetime because of its exceptionally long battery life that even an Energizer bunny frazzled out in keeping its lengthy runtime. Toshiba is priced at a premium rate as well, but not as high as the VAIO.

I asked Clarence on what is it in VAIO that he is seeking after, amidst the flurry of cheap Taiwan brands in the market. Just as I expected, he said it's the "perception of exclusivity", that only few people can have it. I don't know if there's truth to the apothegm that VAIO is for the Windows brass while Mac is a make for the mighty moguls. This is probably what marketing can do to our lives, we'd become slaves to perception.

I capitalized the word VAIO because it is an acronym which stands for Video Audio Integration Operation, just like CLIE and BRAVIA. Yes, I know my product well.

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