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Forums - Sony Discussion - Sony Mobile effectively exiting US market amid slowing sales of smartphones

Sony's new CEO Kenichiro Yoshida calls the loss-making division "indispensable," though half-hearted efforts in the US and struggles in carrier partnerships made Sony a minority player stateside.

Sony is refocusing its smartphone division following losses, effectively exiting the US market following an operating loss of 97.1 billion yen ($879.5 million) for the fiscal year ending in March. Moving forward, Sony will focus on sales in Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Europe, where it has seen greater success.

"We see smartphones as hardware for entertainment and a component necessary to make our hardware brand sustainable," Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida told reporters during a press briefing, as reported by Reuters. "And younger generations no longer watch TV. Their first touch point is smartphone."

Sony smartphones have had enduring popularity in Japan and Europe, due to ties in the region—the company enjoys a close relationship with Japanese mobile network operators, while existing relationships built during the Sony Ericsson joint venture, prior to Sony assuming full control in 2012, have helped with sales in those regions.

However, Sony Mobile has faced significant difficulty making any headway in North America. The dual-function power button and fingerprint reader—a hallmark of Xperia devices until last year—had the fingerprint reading capabilities disabled in firmware in North America, for reasons which the company has never explained, though conflicting reports attribute to either a contractual obligation with network operators or unresolved patent issue. Sony's relationship with mobile network operators in the United States is functionally nonexistent, with no carrier-released phones since the cancellation of the Xperia Z4V on Verizon in 2015.

This is good now that they dont have to lose large amounts of money


Update: Sony also halted smartphone sales in Latin America, the Middle East, Oceania and other South Asian, and India.

Last edited by dx11332sega - on 28 May 2019

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Didn't realize that they still even made smartphones.

As long as they still release them in EU I'm fine, I've been using only Sony phones since probably 2009, don't want to switch now.

think-man said:
As long as they still release them in EU I'm fine, I've been using only Sony phones since probably 2009, don't want to switch now.

Best in the biz!

Though I am enjoying my s9. Samsung pay is fantastic

It really is a Samsung and Apple dominated market here in the states. Kind of sad because Sony was the first to do some of the major features we currently get with most smartphones, including water proofing. Plus, the cameras in the Xperia line are second to none.

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Yea I can personally say that no one I've ever known has had a Sony smartphone here in States (not family, friends or coworkers). They are nonexistent here for the most part. It is mainly Samsung and Apple. Right now I'm using a cheap LG but it gets the job done for most part. I don't game on my phone so don't care for top of line.

Smartphones is a hard business to get into. Recently MS tried by buying Nokia and they failed to succeed so I am not surprised Sony stayed in the market this long as well. Its an expensive loss if not done right. The market is too dominated by Samsung and Apple.

Used to love Sony phones. I had the Z1 and Z3. They were ahead of the curve, great camera's, great performance and first to make waterproof phones mainstream.

They then just sort of... stayed there, didn't improve their design, kept the sharp rectangle and just ignored where the industry was heading and I made the switch to Oneplus.

PS4(PS5 Soon)and PC gaming

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Fuck em. They removed the headphone jack from their phones, so I ain't interested anymore. I'll be buying a note 9.

I'm never going to be able to wrap my head around selling 5 - 10 Million Xperia Phone's a year, at a loss of $1 Billion a year, while pushing a competitors OS and Ecosystem that competes directly with the company bread winning OS and Ecosystem.

I completely agree that being in Mobile is a must, but why not do it with a PlayStation Phone?

Where would Vita be right now if they have spent the $6 Billion in Xperia losses on it over the last 6 years?

Sony gets absolutely nothing from Selling Xperia Phones. Even if a PlayStation Phone had only sold 5 Million units a year in this time period, that would be 30 Million people using PlayStation OS and PlayStation Store 24/7. That is 30 Million people that Sony is getting anywhere from 30 - 100% of every dollar they spend on the device. That is 30 Million people to be using PlayStation Video, PlayStation Vue, PlayStation +, PlayStation Music, and PlayStation Now.

How much more poplular would PlayStation Now and Remote Play be, if they were available on a 4G PlayStation Phone with the latest Wifi, and a 1 to 1 interface with the DS4?

Instead of even venturing down this path, Sony will continue to sell 5 Million, or maybe even less Xperia Phones a year, across something like 8 new devices every 6 months, all while loosing $1 Billion a year, and feeding Android, Google Play, and the rest of Googles Services.

If this is such a good business model, then why don't they do the same thing with PS5?

PS5 can run the Xbox 4 OS, connect to XBL, the XBOX Store, and they can promote Microsoft Movies and TV, and xCloud for Game Streaming. They can release 8 different PS5 models every 6 months, ranging from $279.99 to $1,199.99. Finally, they can move God of War 2, Horizon 2, Gran Turismo Sport/7, and such to the Xbox Store so they can take 30% instead of 100% for 1st party titles, and also make sure to make some of them unmarketed F2P titles, so people are sure to overlook them. At the end of the day, they can move ~5 Million PS5's a year, and loose $1 Billion a year from the Game and Network Services Division.

I mean, Microsoft and Apple already have Home Computing on Lock Down, with Windows and Mac OS. Sony is stupid to even try and make PS5 on its own OS. At least that is what I hear about why it is so smart for them to continue loosing $1 Billion a year in the mobile space, repeating the same thing year in and year out, instead of at least trying to be creative.

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