Rough patch for Sony

Sony Corp., which has built its fame through a global brand presence and innovative products, appears to be facing a difficult time. The Sony group's operating profit in the six-month period through September nosedived by 90.9 percent from a year before to 6.22 billion yen, although sales were up 9.7 percent to 3.6 trillion yen.

Behind this are the massive global recalls of its defective lithium-ion battery packs for laptop computers; a delay in launching the PlayStation 3 (a next-generation video-game console) due to problems with mass-production of the machine's Blu-ray disc drive; and a price cut on the PS3 in Japan to compete with Nintendo Co., its rival in the video-game machine business...

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