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Sony's New No-Frills TV Mostly Designed In Mexico

Unlike traditional products that were designed entirely in Japan, a new no-frills TV set Sony will sell in the competitive U.S. market was invented largely by Sony engineers in Mexico using off-the-shelf parts. The new line is one piece of a culture shift needed to pull Sony out of a downturn, and it shows that Sony managers are starting to get the hang of collaborating better, says CEO Howard Stringer.

Stringer is preparing to roll out a new phase of his turnaround plan. This month, he will announce an ambitious plan that speeds the development of innovative products and services. The ability of the consumer-electronics unit--which makes up 70% of Sony's total sales--to collaborate will be key his quest to reclaim Sony's reputation as an industry leader. Doing so will require products that can be seamlessly connected to each other and to the Internet.

Sony's consumer-electronics business still faces huge challenges. Competition from Samsung and upstarts such as Visio has forced it to cut prices, and it is struggling to earn consistent profits.

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