Sony Japan to replace faulty Transmeta notebooks

"After an investigation yesterday, we came to the conclusion that in the Japanese market we have approximately 13,000 computers that use the affected CPUs," Ted Kanno, a spokesman for Sony, said Friday. "We have posted a notice on our Web site that says if there is a problem we will replace the computer."

The problem occurs, said Kanno, when users attempt to use a two-piece recovery CD-ROM disc set to restore the computer to the original configuration. When the second of the two CD-ROM discs is inserted into the computer, the operating system reinstall sometimes crashes with a "Stream Read Error" message.

"If you reboot and replace the second CD-ROM with the first one, the PC reboots and starts the reinstall process again and maybe the next time it works properly," Kanno said. Because users are not likely to customise their PCs to the level where they would want to use the recovery discs and because it only affects some of the processors for some of the time, Sony decided not to issue a general recall notice but rather offer new machines on demand to customers if they wanted them, he added.

On Thursday, rival NEC announced a general recall of the 284 notebooks it had shipped in Japan containing the Crusoe processors from what is suspected to be a faulty batch of chips. A spokesman for that company said the fault appears to be related to the cache memory inside each of the microprocessors and is more likely a manufacturing fault in one batch of chips than a design flaw with the chip. To date, Sony has received seven complaints from customers concerning the Vaio GT1 machine, which is sold in Japan only, Kanno said, adding that no complaints have been received regarding the Vaio C1 which has sold around 26,000 units in Japan -- more than ten times that of the G1 -- and also is sold in overseas markets.

"Basically, other markets will follow the stance taken in Tokyo," he said, adding that a general recall has not been issued by Sony in other countries. "Business units will decide the course of action."

A spokesman for Hitachi, which also produces notebook PCs using the chip in question, said Friday the company continues to investigate the situation. "At this time we didn't get a report of trouble with Crusoe PCs but we will continue to check out computers."

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

PC World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?