Sony plans to shift focus from the US market, but did they ever have any focus to begin with?


Well, Sony’s product strategy saw a major shift with the launch of the Xperia X line, and much to their chagrin it still hasn’t helped their flailing mobile business. With that, another round of change is on tap, and according to slides obtained by Xperia Blog, those changes will be pretty big.

The slides mostly go into predictable forward-thinking strategies of providing compelling product portfolios, focusing on B2B, and focusing on the core user experience (battery, design, and camera) for smartphones. But it’s their global strategy that caught my eye: they want to “defocus” in the US, India, China, Brazil and other underperforming countries.

sony us plans

That plan in itself isn’t surprising nor dumb: those markets are some of the most highly competitive in the smartphone land, with China especially growing new top players with each passing day. It’s the notion that Sony ever had any focus in one of those countries — the US — to begin with.

I can probably count on one hand how many meaningful Sony smartphones have been made available to US consumers through the typical channels. The most recent carrier launch for the company was the Xperia Z4v (which was actually a rebranded souped up model of a phone from the Xperia Z3 family), but even Verizon had to eventually pull the plug on those plans. Sony’s suggestion was that it was Verizon’s fault the launch took so long to come to fruition, noting a lengthy back-and-forth process on hammering out the details.

xperia z4v date

This was Sony’s most exciting US launch for 2015, and it never happened

Indeed, Verizon is known to be a pretty demanding carrier when it comes to securing smartphones. But is it any coincidence that other carriers haven’t been tapped? Could it, perhaps, be that Sony has no idea how to actually sell smartphones in the United States? They can’t even get AT&T to take a phone and AT&T launched a lot of WTF phones in the past.

So, what’d they try for their 2016 efforts? Sony looked to a direct-to-consumer approach that has been popularized by OnePlus, HTC, and Motorola for the launch of the Xperia X line, but that approach only works if the phones aren’t stupidly expensive (and if you have an aggressive marketing strategy to back it).

We’re not sure why Sony has struggled to penetrate the US market, especially when they do so well in other areas of consumer electronics such as TV, gaming, and music. But we know one thing for certain: their plans to “defocus” in the US won’t be too impactful because they were never really focusing there to begin with. For the future, they’re all-in on Europe, the Middle East, and other Asian and Latin American markets.

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

Neon, Argon, and Mercury are Blackberry’s next three Android smarthpones

Previous article

Facebook spruces up Bot Messengers with quick replies, the ability to rate them, and much more

Next article

You may also like


Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More in News