Sony has appointed one of its presidents to oversee product quality and safety, the first time such a high-level member of staff has taken that position at the company.The new role for Makoto Kogure, who was president of Sony\u2019s TV division, came as the company deals with the fallout of two recalls in recent weeks of laptop computer batteries that included lithium-ion cells that it produced.The first, on Aug. 15, saw Dell recall up to 4.1 million laptop batteries because of a potential fire hazard. Then on Aug. 24, Apple Computer said it was recalling 1.8 million batteries for the same reason. Sony has estimated the recalls will cost it between 20 billion yen and 30 billion yen (US$171 million to $256 million).The battery problem isn\u2019t the sole reason for Kogure\u2019s appointment, the Tokyo company said."Obviously the batteries are an issue, but it\u2019s not intended that he will focus on batteries and batteries alone," said Gerald Cavanagh, a spokesman for Sony in Tokyo. "It\u2019s something we\u2019ve been wanting to upgrade for some time, and batteries will be one of the responsibilities."-Martyn Williams, IDG News Service (Tokyo Bureau)Related Links:\n\nApple, Dell Plot Battery Standards\n\nApple to Recall 1.8M Laptop Batteries\n\nDell to Recall 4.1M Batteries Due to Fire Hazard\n\nJapan: Apple Laptop Fire Fueled by Sony Battery\n\nJapan Orders Sony, Dell to Investigate Battery IssuesCheck out our CIO News Alerts and Tech Informer pages for more updated news coverage.