Sony Design

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Aiming to design products that bring
joy to daily life and dream big

Tamie Onishi

Education: Industrial Design
Joined Sony: 2008
Role: Industrial Designer


Playing musical instruments, having learned piano as a child. Occasional performances at friends’ weddings, and performing with acquaintances.

Thoughts on Industrial Design

This work involves fashioning the world that products represent. We begin by considering what kind of usability, functionality, and appearance would fit prospective users and the product’s purpose and usage scenarios. We then find the shapes, structures, materials, finishes, and other details that will give people the engaging experiences Sony is known for.

It’s very satisfying to work in industrial design. We can participate from the very beginning in product planning, and we contribute widely in development, helping to decide how products are fabricated, molded, and finished.

Thoughts on Work
since Joining Sony

BRAVIA™ X9200A Series 4K LCD TV

My first two years were focused on TV design. After this, the scope of my work expanded to include home products in general—not only TVs, but also audio products. I took on these advance development projects over the next two and a half years.

In these forward-looking projects, I proposed product design fitting scenarios in two to three years, based on projected trends in interior design and consumer lifestyles. Current Sony TVs reflect the Sense of Quartz design theme that grew from these projects.

Of these, the X9200A series is especially impressive. As flagship TVs, they combine amazing 4K resolution with equally outstanding sound quality. Speakers flanking the screen set the design apart. It was the first time we had equipped a TV with such fine speakers, and we had to overcome several challenges. Once our engineers saw the potential for an excellent product in this design, everyone worked very hard to make it happen.

In-ear Headphones MDR-EX15AP

In 2012 I took on headphone and voice recorder design after joining our Personal Audio Design Team, which also designs Walkman® players and other products. One project was for basic, compact MDR-EX15AP headphones. Here, our design capitalizes on the materials, creating attractive gradation by combining plastic in two colors and opacities. I try to keep up on news in materials, finishes, and fabrication, where advances are made every day.

I’m thrilled when I notice people using products that I’ve contributed to. When I see people wearing these headphones on a train, I find myself wanting to ask how they like using them.

Digital Photo Frame DPF-E75

Wireless Stereo Headset MDR-EX31BN

with Other Offices

It’s important to stay in contact with my colleagues in product planning, engineering, marketing, and other teams. I review usability and functionality with planners, investigate how to make products just a little smaller with engineers, and discuss regional color preferences with marketing staff.

Fortunately, user interface and communication design teams work on the same floor as those of us in industrial design, which is very convenient. This can keep us on the same page as we design all that products should represent, down to how every screen or button works and what the packaging is like.

Final Thoughts

I used to work in industrial design at another company, but Sony offers such a wide range of product categories—some of which form wonderful entertainment ecosystems—that my work here is more interesting. I hope to continue contributing to inspired product design that makes each day a little more enjoyable for the users.

A day of a designer

9:00 10:00 11:00 12:00 13:00 14:00 15:00 16:00 17:00 18:00 19:00
Arrive at the office, Check email
Meetimg with engineers
Attend a gift trade show
(Check for trends and promising materials)
Design work back at the office
Meeting with a mock-up supplier
Leave work (no overtime today)