Sony Feels Forced To Release Netbook; Budget Notebook Coming

It seems to be a somewhat common refrain for notebook manufacturers to first claim the netbook segment is unfeasible and then promptly announce a budget ultraportable of their own.  Fujitsu did it, denying any interest before pushing out the AMILO Mini, and now it looks like Sony will be next.  After the My Graphic Splash event yesterday, Sony's Senior vice president of Information Technology Products Mike Abary let slip that people should "stay tuned" for Sony's netbook offering.

"We are letting the pioneers in the market make the mistakes. Sony has to participate because consumers are our core competency. We have to participate" Senior vice president of Sony Information Technology Products, Mike Abary

From his quote, it seems as though Sony are entering the field reluctantly.  Earlier this year, Abary himself described netbooks as "a race to the bottom", a sentiment that at the time Fujitsu echoed, with Paul Moore, senior director of mobile product management for the company describing the segment as "a product that essentially has no margin."

Abary refused to comment any more on the netbook design, or when customers could expect to see something from the company.  Earlier this year, Sony were the subject of more netbook rumors, and in June they were tipped to pick up VIA's OpenBook netbook reference design.