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Sony boss Howard Stringer steps down

Sony CEO Sir Howard Stringer has stepped down as chief, replaced by PlayStation veteran Kazuo Hirai.

Sony's playing executive musical chairs, with big boss Sir Howard Stringer stepping down from his role as CEO of the Japanese tech giant, and PlayStation veteran Kazuo Hirai taking his place.

Stringer isn't going far though -- he's staying on as Sony's chairman of the board of directors. In a comment put out with the official statement, the Welsh ex-boss praised Hirai, saying, "I believe his tough-mindedness and leadership skills will be of great benefit to the company and its customers in the months and years ahead."

Hirai will be taking the reins on 1 April (presumably it's not all some cruel April Fool's jape). He reckons Sony's best course of action is to focus on cameras, smart phones and games and to "turn around the television business".

So, make everything better then. Hey, how come we're not in charge of Sony?

The Japanese giant may be one of the biggest names in the business, but it's tough times for the company that gave us the Walkman, PlayStation and Blu-rays, with Apple and Samsung dominating the smart phone and tablet markets and Microsoft and Nintendo enjoying games console success.

Sony is currently in the process of buying Sony Ericsson, which recently posted net losses of £206m for the last year. In financial terms: owchies.

How can Sony succeed? What do you think Hirai needs to do to put the company back on top? Tell us in the comments, or on our Facebook wall.