Despite building some of the most powerful and high quality Android devices in the world, Sony has long struggled to carve out a profitable chunk of the smartphone market, dominated mostly by the likes of Samsung and Apple. With earnings taking a hit, Sony announced during an investor relations meeting that they plan reduce their smartphone (and TV) business by as much as 30% in hopes of once again reaching profitability.
It’s not entirely clear where the company went wrong (marketing, limited availability of handsets) the new plan is to consolidate their smartphone lineup by focusing less on the low/mid-range, and increasing customer retention rates. With a more streamlined product portfolio, Sony would then, hopefully, be able to offer better support for their devices, increasing customer satisfaction in the process.
Sony’s all new mobile division chief told investors:
“We’ll aim to improve the profitability of our business, rather than focusing on expanding the scale of the operations or our market share. We want to establish a structure in which we can make profits even when sales fall by 20-30 percent.”
Outside of their smartphones and tablets, Sony will again turn to their highly profitable video game and image sensor businesses to keep everything afloat. Their image sensors can already be found in Apple and countless Chinese-made devices, with Sony expecting a 70% increase over the next 3 years.
As a newly (and very satisfied) Sony Xperia Z3 Compact owner, I really can’t say enough about Sony’s Android hardware and software and would definitely consider buying another smartphone from them in the future (as long as it’s below 5-inches).
While this latest development may not sound like the best of news, Sony’s new strategy of “less is more” in regard to mobile will hopefully turn things around. It seemed to do well enough for HTC, right?