Sony Tries Automated Mall Kiosks

Sony is trying automated kiosks as a way of expanding consumer electronics sales in malls without going to the expense of a Sony Style store; the first locations are in Atlanta, Boulder and Santa Rosa. Powered by San Francisco-based Zoom Systems, the kiosks will serve up MP3 players, digital cameras, memory sticks, batteries and the like along with Sony CDs and DVDs at competitive prices. The kiosks are designed with screens that show movie trailers and music videos. If the kiosks are successful, Sony exec Joseph Stinziano told the NYT buyers could be able to fill their MP3 players at the kiosks using an USB port or download sample chapters for the new Sony Reader. The definition of success: an incremental increase in sales, not a diversion.