Sony’s goal is to become the Nike of gaming gear

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Think of your favorite athletes in a number of sports. Whether it’s Giannis Antetokounmpo in the NBA, Cristiano Ronaldo in the Premier League, Emma Raducanu in the WTA, Tiger Woods on the PGA Tour or long-distance runner Eliud Kipchoge, they all have one thing in common: they wear Nike clothes. It’s an age-old marketing tactic: encourage professionals to wear your products and the masses will want to emulate them.

That’s Sony’s aim with its new INZONE brand, which currently includes a trio of headphones and a few high-end monitors. The company will slot the gear into its EVO event later this year and is partnering with Riot Games for its Valorant Champions Tour. Why? Well, if you ever look at a professional gamer’s YouTube or Twitch channel, you’ll see dozens and dozens of people asking about their setup. It’s exactly the same game as Nike.

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“We’re going to start at the top and learn what the best eSports players want,” said executive vice president Kazuo Kii. Nikkei. “The vision we have in mind is of Mizuno and Nike providing shoes for athletes. You can win cash prizes in eSports. If a monitor’s response time lags slightly, you lose. Sony products will not let those engaged in these grueling battles down.

The products, of course, will have to deliver – but Sony thinks that, when it comes to its new monitors, its history with TVs will come in handy. “Sony is unique in that we come from a background in making televisions. We are proud of our image technology. We look forward to showing customers our immersive experience and realism.

INZONE’s first wave of products drew decent reviews, with its $899.99 price proving particularly popular among tech enthusiasts. Of course, this is only its first product line, but it’s clear that the company sees a huge opportunity in the sector – and could prove a real rival for Acer, Alienware, LG, Samsung, et al.

Darryl A. Chapin