Sony has announced that it’s going to be diminishing its smartphone business in pursuit of profitability, according to a new Wall Street Journal article by Takashi Mochizuki and Eric Pfanner. The announcement comes by way of Hiroki Totoki, the new head manager of Sony’s mobile division.
Despite consistent efforts, Sony hasn’t been able to outperform rivals in the premium end of the smartphone market, while cheapening technological costs have allowed ever greater competition to flood into the lower end of the market – even the seemingly advanced biometric fingerprint-scanning technology pioneered by Apple is now becoming standard in low-end smartphones. So Sony is effectively bowing out, aiming to maintain only a minimal presence in the smartphone market going forward. (It’s worth noting that Samsung, too, has cut its smartphone production going forward.)
Still, this isn’t to say that Sony is discounting involvement in mobile devices altogether. Mr. Totoki indicated that Sony has its eye on the future of the Internet of Things, and recognizes that “telecommunications features” will remain very important going forward. This is very much in step with its fellow giants; Samsung recently organized a conference largely covering this very issue. And Sony has remained profitable in its image sensor division, which will likely continue to see applications in mobile devices, especially as those devices come equipped with more and more advanced biometric features.