Apple Accuses Sony of Fudging Walkman Capacity

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Sony and Apple once had words of praise for each other, but today the two companies are engaged in a war of words through the Wall Street Journal. At issue is Sonyis claim that the new 20 GB Walkman NW-HD1 can hold up to 13,000 songs, substantially more than the 5,000 songs that Apple claims its 20 GB iPod can hold. The difference, of course, is the compression rates used to determine capacity, and Apple has accused Sony of making an apples to oranges comparison. From the Journal:

In a statement, Apple said Sony isnit accurately depicting the song capacity of its new 20-gigabyte Network Walkman. While Sony says the device can hold 13,000 tracks, Apple alleges that the Japanese electronics giant, in calculating the storage capacity of the Network Walkman, is using songs that are compressed into digital files of inferior fidelity to those that Apple uses to calculate how many songs the iPod can hold (digital music of lower quality take up less storage but delivers poorer sound than high-quality songs). As a result, Apple posits, Sonyis Walkman actually holds only 4,800 songs that have been compressed into a higher quality format.

"Weire disappointed that Sony, which is new to this market, has decided to make their first impression by attempting to mislead the press and customers," Apple said in a statement.

[...]

"Sony chose to play marketing games so we wanted to set things right so that people could compare the devices apples to apples," said Greg Joswiak, Appleis vice president of hardware product marketing.

There is much more in the full article, including what the Journal characterizes as an "angry" retort from Sony, and we recommend it as a very interesting read.

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