In August, Sony announced that it will stop providing its own music store service Connect in the United States, Canada and Europe by march 2008, and that all new Walkman players will be useable with Windows Media stores, and that it would be possible to transfer songs from any software program you would like to use.
The new walkmans that will be released in some days, are already ready for the open platform Sony has made the transition to.
Today, Sony announced by mail that there wont be a firmware update for Walkmans currently released, which are still built for the online Connect store. For owners of any older Walkman this means that they wont have any opportunity to buy songs legal for their players, except for premium, DRM-free services. Users have already complained that this is very unreasonable from the side of sony, considering that the biggest part of the new Walkmans is exactly the same as the old ones, except for some minor firmware changes.
The Sony Walkman user base already started an online petition which will be sended to Sony if there wont be a firmware update before the Connect store closes.
News source: In-house