Kanada: Packaging for S-Frame digital photo frames was designed knowing that many people will buy the frames as gifts for others. I'll talk a little about the original packaging. What sets digital photo frames apart from other products is that two recipients are involved. For every person who purchases a frame, there may be another person who receives it as a gift.
In this case, it's a perfect opportunity to add digital photos of great memories before giving the frame to your friends or relatives. After you open the box, you’ll notice that we thought of providing an inner box you can use when giving the frame to someone. That's the purpose of the white box inside— a thoughtful touch for the recipient. Also, we needed a straightforward design for this inner box, so it's essentially ready for people to use for repackaging right away. But with this kind of product, measures to protect the frame might make the packaging too complex and hard to reassemble.
After discussing ways to solve this problem with our packaging engineers, we created easily removable and reinsertable pieces to protect the LCD panel. These pieces reinforce the package and cushion the frame. There's a little design ingenuity here, too: the protective piece embellished with an S-Frame logo is also a thoughtful gesture for recipients. In fact, it takes just two steps to open the inner box, which you can even do with one hand.
In gifts, the packaging is really an extension of the product. All of our planners, designers, and packaging engineers shared the same vision for this product. That's why we can offer the S-Frame in a box so ideal for gift-giving.
Ichimura: Packaging is ultimately thrown away, but despite this, it should satisfy people and be environmentally sound, besides being easy to dispose of. Meeting all of these needs at a high level is what we do through sustainable packaging practices at Sony. What's critical toward this end is a workplace environment where designers and packaging engineers can work together closely. Designers look to the engineers as experts in packaging structure and distribution. Once we apply our respective insight together, we can put our ideals of sustainability into practice.
Hata: That's a distinct advantage of designing in-house. Innovative packaging doesn't come from the power of design alone. From conceptual design to anticipating issues in distribution, a range of activities are involved. Knowledge gained from these projects was applied to existing sustainable design objectives, developed with our packaging engineers, which we pursue in routine design and packaging engineering.
Nagasaka: We have successfully practiced principles of sustainable design for some product packaging, but development along these lines has just begun. Looking ahead, we will continue to add to our repertoire of packaging that embodies these ideals as we extend these efforts to all Sony products.
These initiatives also respond to practical concerns. We see greater environmental awareness all around us. It's a sign of the times, and regulations around the world reflect this. Even without the current interest in eco-friendliness, however, Sony would still work toward sustainable design as an obviously desirable goal. One day, we will suddenly realize that all Sony products and packaging embody these worthy ideals. That's the goal we seek. Until then, we will continue doing our best.