Sony refutes suggestions that Mobile is up for sale

by XB on 3rd March 2015

in News


SonySony outlined its three-year corporate strategy last month and with it a strong emphasis that the Mobile business was not a key growth factor. It also confirmed that it will “continue to explore potential alliances with other companies”. That brought a lot of eulogies for Sony Mobile from the media, talking about the end of a journey and the Xperia brand.

Well, Sony took multiple opportunities at MWC to completely refute suggestions that the division is up for sale. First of all, Sony’s Chief Executive Officer Kazuo Hirai said the following to the BBC when referring to Mobile: “We need to keep a closer eye on the return on capital, what the competition is doing… But that’s not to say we’re getting out of the business.

Secondly, the Sony Mobile head Hiroki Totoki said that speculation regarding a sale of the division was “completely untrue,” when speaking to French newspaper Le Figaro. Totoki pointed out that Kazuo Hirai’s presence at MWC emphasised “the importance of this business for Sony“. He also confirmed plans to refocus the product strategy and to slow down the rhythm of new product launches.

Much of this is a red herring though. As we pointed out above, Sony’s initial comments around the business talked about “potential alliances with other companies”, which would most likely refer to partnerships or a joint venture. There has been no change of stance in this regard and Sony is very likely to be exploring all opportunities.

Hiroki Totoki also revealed some interesting insights whilst speaking to The Wall Street Journal. Totoki said that he wanted to “redefine how people communicate” and that he wants the mobile division to “become a meaningful source of profit to the group”.

He even emphasised that the division’s future could lie in software. “Communication used to be mainly over voice but now people use photos and stickers. We won’t tie ourselves only to smartphones or even hardware,” said Totoki

Totoki also said that Sony will focus more on design and ergonomics rather than having the latest specs: “What we have learned from our long experience in the consumer electronics business is that consumers want details that you can’t deliver by just simply assembling powerful parts”.

Sony struggle

Via BBC, Reuters and The Wall Street Journal.

Thanks to all that sent this in!

  • Sachin Gautam

    This is what i wanted, we are with u Sony and will Always be!!!!!

  • lovebmw

    Lovely to hear, look at how the z3 was compared to all the latest new phones… Yes now it is behind, but it was free advertisement, almost all started with z3 being a resilient crazy good powerful phone.

    High end phones, with more functionality, battery power, processor speed and faster updates…. With more time to issue a new phone, Sony will be faster on delivering updates.

    I still think they need to listen to fans a little more, AND penetrate usa market with partnerships and such is key.

  • youssef

    Yes.. Sony is the best.. I love sony so much.. Because the xperia is the best smartphone

  • hahshshaaa

    more cool (futuristic) features

  • Kabuto Kouji

    Ok then let’s be innovative

  • kevin gordon

    love Sony phones being using for years, what they need to do is look after customers they do have update phones make less of them but keep quality phones and make it easier to have phones fixed good service agents not like now cost u a arm and a leg and cost a fortune what Sony must know if somebody has to much trouble with phone or no help to fix its a lost customer have z3 compact love it

  • Timel

    Sony is now doing like Samsung’ve done before

    All Sony Xperia phones are unidentified; I mean, budget phones, mid- range phones and flagships they are all have the same boring design and that so stupid!

    I don’t mind if cheap Xperia devices will come with old boring omnibalance design but new Xperia flagship devices have to came with new design! Sony’ve stuck with omnibalance design too long and now may be this is the time to change.

  • so where

    Maybe Sony and LG should form partnership. It clearly seems like Sony wants to relieve it’s burden of a very expensive division with moderate sales.

  • Raj Singh

    No one company has drastically changed the design language of their phones, with the exception of Samsung’s S6.
    Microsoft/Nokia, Sony, LG, HTC, Apple and Motorola have been using and refining their core design ethos. They don’t radically change the aesthetics of the device.
    There’s a reason a Porsche or Ferrari or Lamborghini retain the essence of their identity while refreshing the current product lineup.

  • Timel

    More smart and useful software features

    More cool futuristic features that can blow people’s mind

    More PlayStation integrating

    More maketing buget

    More relationship with carriers

    I’m glad to hear that Sony don’t give up on mobile war but If Sony won’t change, they will never can win Apple and Samsung.

  • Fiiliip

    Guys,no lollipo here!

  • Jecht_Sin

    Actually I love the design of my M2. Can’t say the same about most Samsung, stuck with the iPhone 3 GS design..

  • timothy chan

    I don’t care if it takes them 2 years to make a new phone model…. as long as that is THE phone I am up for it. I think it is nice for them to finally see this (maybe)

  • Guest

    New design please!

    I want futuristic design, something like TRON style. Maybe Sony should hire director Joseph Kosinski and designer Daniel Simon for design and develop the Xperia Z4

  • Nathan Drake

    New design please!

    I want futuristic design, something like TRON style. Maybe Sony should hire director Joseph Kosinski and designer Daniel Simon for design and develop the Xperia Z4

  • Omarion07

    This is the second article I’ve read that says “Sony will focus more on design and ergonomics rather than having the latest specs”. From reading Totoki’s quote to the Wall Street Journal, there’s nothing that indicate that Sony is going to focus on design rather than high end specs. All he’s saying is that top specs alone aren’t sufficient for consumers and more is required to deliver a good product. Could someone please enlighten me?

  • Omarion07

    It’s already been designed man! Maybe the Z5 in 2016.. If there’s such a thing.

  • Mohammad Shahroz

    you are right this is what he said. he didnt say sony wont focus on design rather than high specs. top specs with better design makes a good product

  • goldenblls

    I hope this means now that they will not continue churn out predictable handsets once or twice a year, but will try

  • ZXcorr

    In my opinion, they need:
    1. Better software development team (they need better camera software, quicker updates, etc)
    2. Better marketing (their marketing images are already good IMO, they just need better reach/exposure)
    3. Better after-sales services (to retain existing customers and create good word of mouth to potential customers)

    That’s all.

  • goldenblls

    I’ve had some fantastic aftersales service from them recently. I thought they were already focusing on customer retention.

  • Gitarooman

    Z3 is exceptional only because the difference between s800-s805 isn’t big enough to made a huge difference plus its s805 is more than enough for 1080p screen. Look at how note 4 is doing with 2k screen on a s805. If all competitors have moved to s810 or any next gen 64 bit soc and sony decide to stick a s805 in their Z4, they will become a complete joke, not to mention they are going to launch at a later date for sure. And I can assure them I will never be buying any Xperia ever again.

  • Nathan Drake

    the new Sony mobile’s gadget http://www.sonymobile.com/global-en/products/accessories/smart-bluetooth-speaker-bsp60/ Its design reminds me about TRON Legacy movie hehe, Maybe the Sony Xperia Z4 will come out with this TRON Style design too?

  • RedGhost05

    Well, nice to heard that. But the problem is that I don’t see a single Xperia in the US! Sony need more partner ships with strong carriers like Verizon or AT&T (the last Sony phone I saw with AT&T was the Xperia T). Also, I don’t remember the last time I saw a Sony phone in a physical store like Best Buy.

  • Paolo Armadoro

    The z3 will have snapdragon 810 (I think 99% of possibility) because also z4 tablet has that processor

  • InspectorGadget80

    FIRE THE V.P. and KAZ and market the SONY BRAND phones here in the U.S. if they want to stay alive. Kaz should go back to the PLAYSTATION SCE division

  • I think not only me here that made at least more than 3 people to buy sony’s phone. Just love the quality

  • paul_cus

    Slight sigh of relief. Bring on the Z4 Compact.

  • thew01

    and the rumor on media last days ,it’s just a rumor :v ……SONY STILL ALIVE !!!

  • LG, is doing quite well without Sony they don’t need them c;

  • 3_nity

    Cheers….

  • Reza

    Ohh that’s relieved me now I can breathe easily..

  • Zidhin Mohd

    Yep.. The customer service has improved.. Noticed it

  • Nguy?n T?n L?c

    well those companies aren’t in the same bad condition as Sony mobile so I think Sony do need a change. It suites Sony’s design tradition anyway.

  • User2080

    besides, who will buy it?

    if sony can’t sell sony, how will others do it?

  • jxPerience

    All the best SONY.. You are the only reason why i am using android.

  • jxPerience

    Sony don’t need the crap of LG as well.

  • jxPerience

    That’s the way to identify your identity. Put yourself into it, If you will overhaul your face does somebody will know you? NO

  • Timel

    Sorry but nowadays Sony isn’t a popular brand anymore, Sony’s image is pretty boring, I think only you guys (Sony fans) are not enough for Sony, Sony gotta do anything that make other people outside want their Xperias, not just their fans.

    Hope the Xperia Z4 will come out with New tech innovations, New cool features and Futuristic looking

  • Could that be why, Sony’s smartphone division is in the red? it’s well known LG has capture 10.4% of the Android market. That puts it second next to Samsung even HTC has more marketshare than Sony..

    The Big 3 is Apple, Samsung and LG as far as smartphones goes…

    LG now number 3 smartphone maker by sales; Apple, Samsung lead, HTC drops to fourth
    http://gadgets.ndtv.com/mobiles/news/lg-now-number-3-smartphone-maker-by-sales-apple-samsung-lead-htc-drops-to-fourth-352903

  • Rahul Kate

    Look at the new S6, what innovation they are offering? An Apple copied design, Apple copied Touch ID, removed Expansion Slot, No waterproofing at all…Sony is offering subtly designed classy phones. They might nothe offer gimmicky tech like finger print scanner, edged display etc. But. What they offer is more useful than those. A strong sturdy build, 2 days battery life and water and dust proofing…

  • Emil Oskarsson

    Can you just shut up? Obviously you are payed by Samsung to spam this site about how bad and boring Sonys devices are, and that Samsungs mobile products are the best. Truth is you are brain dead and have no clue about what you are talking about. Just look at Sonys new tablet, can Samsung match up with that one? Don’t think so

  • Quark Gluon

    I think that’s a region specific issue. They still have the worst aftersales reputation in some countries.

  • Reza

    Don’t bother him, he just a down syndrome pathetic boy… He don’t know what exactly talking about. Just wish his luck with the medical treatment.

  • Quark Gluon

    That’s right. I don’t know what happens between Sony and US carriers, but Sony needs to push it through, definitely.

  • splash

    Adding to this list last but not least…
    SONY must come up with new design language rather than OMNI balance.
    OMNI is now waaaaay outdated and getting boring

  • laci_csk

    Go on Sony

  • Francis A. Francis

    Xperia Nexus is that you?

  • Francis A. Francis

    “potential alliances with other companies”…hmmmmm

  • Bav

    Sony is the only brand, that truly offers innovation, it’s shame more people don’t buy Sony. 12 Reasons for Z3 being better. 1)The Z3 IP68 certified, waterproof and dust proof up to metre under water . 2) Z3 has MicroSd card slot upto 128GB. 3) Z3 has Front facing speakers. 4) Has PS4 remote play.5) dedicated shutter button. 6) 20.7 Megapixel camera Sensor, highest sensor on any smart phone currently (Also Sony supplies all camera modules to all i phones 6. 7) Z3 has 4K video recording, not available on the i phone. 8) Z3 has a display with a resolution of 424 pixels per pinch (i phone 6 has a display of 401 ppi. 9) Z3 features Snapdragon 801 quad core processor 2.50 GHZ (i phone 6 dual core ). 10) Z3 has 3GB of RAM 3 times more than i phone 6. 11) Z3 has themes to allow you customize the backgrounds, Icons, without rooting the device. 12) Z3 features power management options that allow the Z3 to operate for 2/ 3 days without charge. Conclusion the Z3 is the best smartphone on the market, unless your a i phone sheep who follows the flock of apple. Those who are enlightened in the field will always choose sony.

  • Afnan Muhammad

    My first ever phone is Sony Ericsson W580. Then Vivaz, Ray, SP and now Z3 Compact. As long as Sony didnt stop making smartphone I will always support Sony Xperia. I never consider other brand.

  • Afnan Muhammad

    most of Sony loss comes from their low end and mid end smartphone. My suggesstion is stop making low and mid end smartphone and just make high end smartphone, Z4, Z4 Compact, Z4 Ultra, Tablet Z4 Compact, and Z4 Tablet. Thats all. 5 per year.

  • Timel

    your comment is just a generic fanboy’s view which is so bias

    “print scanner is gimmick” you said like that
    just because Sony phone don’t have that feature

    I like Samsung Pay, S Note, S Planner, Multi Windows, especially its camera which is very smart and very great!

  • Ariful Islam

    Yes I think SONY realized those lacking and answered with this statement “the division’s future could lie in software”. Steve Jobs generously gave SONY the ‘clue’ back in 2007. He said that only reason SONY couldn’t rule the portable music industry only because they couldn’t make the software. An ipod or Mac is a beautiful package just like SONY devices… But what really differentiates is the software. You don’t have to be a genius to guess the reason why Xperia imaging sucks as SONY makes most of the mobile sensors.

  • roeshak

    Sorry you’re completely wrong there. Fingerprint scanner isn’t gimmicky. It’s something if done properly, consumers use everyday. It’s proven with the successes of the iPhone 5s and upwards. Waterproofing on the other hand is a peace of mind thing. Not something you get regular use from. Sony needs to advance the technology. If they could find a way to make the display usable when wet then that would give it more consumer appeal. Maybe some kind of wet mode to go with glove mode.
    They’re not the only ones to offer strong study builds, practically everyone else is doing so too to varying degrees. 2 days battery life is also not a major selling point as we’ve all becomes accustomed to charging overnight. A good day of usage is key, anything more is just an extra but it ain’t gonna sell you more phones.
    Timel as much as you guys hate him is correct in some of the things he says. Sony isn’t going to grow in the mobile space by making phones just for xperia fans. It needs to make devices that have broader appeal and the way to do that is to implement popular features. Apple has made touch id very popular so it makes good business sense to follow suit.
    Another critical area is imaging and Sony mobile have consistently under delivered despite having some of the best hardware on the android side. Poor software development means xperia cameras need a lot of time and effort to match results others produce quickly.
    It doesn’t really matter what xperia fans think. They’re too few of them to make Sony mobile a viable company. What truly matters is what others out there think and right now, most aren’t thinking xperia when it comes to smartphone purchases.
    We can get into the habit like htc fans of blaming poor marketing for all the problems bit the simple truth is its the products that are the problem. They just don’t have the mass appeal the apple and Samsung devices have.
    Having the best specs may not be essential but offering features people like is necessary.
    Samsung always goes for the popular, they saw the waves Sony made with waterproofing on the original Z and copied it straight away just as they did touch id from apple which they have now finally implemented properly.
    They’ve dropped waterproofing because they can see that the novelty has worn off and it’s lost its traction with the consumers. If Sony wants to carry on promoting this feature then they have to advance the tech. Make the display useable. Only then would it gain broader appeal. As it is now it’s just an insurance policy against not splashes of water as most phones survive that but against submerging which most people don’t worry about. Okay you’ve got underwater photography but that too doesn’t light the blue touch paper much.
    It’s about mass appeal and unfortunately htc and Sony mobile seem to be stuck in their own little holes making devices for their very limited fanbase.
    Sony mobile ceo needs to get all this talk of redefining the way people do anything. They’re not in a position to do so. What he should be focused on is producing competitive devices, increase sales and grow market share. Once they achieve a meaningful position in the mobile space then they can start trying to refine.
    Such an arrogant statement that. As they say, you’ve got to learn to crawl before you walk. Somebody needs to remind Sony mobile of that!

  • Vjekoslav Andric

    Sony needs marketing, lots of marketing
    They just outed THE best tablet out there, and THE best midranger out there for a good price
    You need marketing!
    Next you need to stick to 3 lines only, E, M and Z, with ultra and compact…
    Camera is best, so need to enhance automode to 20mpx, only cause of ease of use
    Else is all perfect, just market it better
    Samsung markets their devices strong features, one by one, on and on…and those are inferior in numbers to those in xperias…

  • ?????

    Sony is quite popular here in Bulgaria, especially in recent days I get to see many people with Xperia smartphones and it feels good not to be the only one in the crowd. But I think Sony should make their smartphones available all around the world, including the USA, because that’s where the money come from.

  • rzero21

    outdated and boring? if something works fine, why change it?

    These days it seems people all care about are trends and fashion.

  • Ana Heluši?

    We want Vaio back

  • Nguy?n T?n L?c

    True but at the same time, people also cry for new design from Sony. Many say they get a bit tired of Sony’s Omnibalance phylosophy with huge bezel. Sony should do something like Samsung currently with S6, change design quite radically with material choices but still let others recognize the general design. Samsung have already gone with glass and metal frame so Sony should find something better. S6 have been receiving really positive feedback on the new design apart from the fingerprint magnet on the back, Androidpolice even said it way better that Sony’s craftmanshift :( which I hope Sony will do something to make Androidpolice feel sorry for that :p

  • Itsarapong Intoum

    By releasing M4 which I believe it is much better than samsung A5 and also have cheaper price, Z4 tablet which is much better than iPad. I don’t have any idea why sony will go bankrupt.

    Just go away hater and troll. You guy deserve shit !!

  • Sharod Richardson

    lmao i skate and get soaked in sweat , id say i use the water/dust proofing everyday, and sony offers class + aesthetic appeal and functionality, few times i take my phone out my pocket its dripping sweat as i am and works just fine and able to navigate screen etc .
    IMO sony WAS definitely close to dominating the android smart phone market , keep in mind they were new in the android game. but all in all long battery life, aesthetic appeal , waterproof those features can be used anywhere and will keep your phone going in case of battery life=long nights, waterproofing=protect against water spills, sweat etc, and aesthetic appeal= showing a chick your phone lol, best phones made. i couldnt use this new edge touch screen or a fingerprint scanner while skating or even after, griptape rubbed off my prints lol… bunch of gimmics samsung has added

  • roeshak

    When you think about these things, you need to take a more general overview of things. How many skateboarders are there in the world is wonder? Certainly not enough to propell Sony to dominance.
    There are just more people who’d prefer a fingerprint scanner to waterproofing.
    Don’t forget the waterproofing protects against submerging for prolonged spells. Most phones would survive a splash or even a quick dunk in water.

  • jxPerience

    sorry but your source a bit dated (2013?)
    FYI Sony shares are better than HTC for 2014 do some google dude

  • Pingback: Why and how Sony should double down on its Mobile Handset division | Pchadri's Blog()

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  • PRP Magic

    Dear Sony people (manager,engineers and search and developers ) i think this is the time to entry to the competition game because you company had a valuable reputation but at this time it’s been dis creasing. my suggestion is you company has to thinking in different way, Sony company has many products (mobile phones,tablets,smart watch, surrounding systems and headphones , cameras, PlayStation games those are the products building at this time. i suggest you people have to think about creating a washing machines refrigerates and time to starting again building a new laptops and computers as Sony customer am really happy so far but you have to staring building new products and hopefully a company could catch the market again. Trying to innovation a new products.

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