Sony will shift its phone-manufacturing division’s focus to a limited number of higher-end handsets, an influential analyst claims, as it moves further away from its former status as purveyor of affordable, music-focussed feature phones.
Last week, it was confirmed that Sony has agreed a $1.46 billion deal for Ericsson – its venture partner under the Sony Ericsson (SE) brand.
The acquisition, which comes after years of speculation that all was not well in the partnership, will mark a sea change in strategy for the handset-maker, claims Mobile Review editor Eldar Murtazin.
According to the extraordinarily well connected mobile maven, whose track record includes breaking the news that Nokia was getting into bed with Microsoft, Sony will slim down its product line to “3-4 unique/high-end smartphones in future”.
The strategic move, which will likely mean more Xperia phones along the lines of the Arc and the end of low-cost, mid-range kits like the X10 Mini and X8 and the Walkman-branded range, is scheduled for 2013 and thereafter, Murtazin claims.
News of the proposed about-turn in Sony's approach comes after its most recent efforts, such as the stillborn Play gaming phone, received a mixed response from consumers and tech watchers alike.