Thanks to major discounting, Sony's market share now leads Apple's share in Japan
What is helping Sony turn things around is a discount promotion from the country's leading carrier, NTT DoCoMo. Out of a population of 127 million people, the carrier has 60 million subscribers. DoCoMo has sold 630,000 units of the Sony Xperia Z in the first 10 weeks after releasing the model. With heavy promotions for the device on the subway, television and online, the carrier is offering discounts of as much as 20,000 yen ($209 USD) for Sony's flagship Android model. Since starting the discounts on May 15th, the Sony Xperia Z can be bought for just 5000 yen ($52 USD) while the Samsung Galaxy S4 is priced at 15,000 yen ($155 USD). Meanwhile, one problem facing Apple in Japan is that it's iconic smartphone is not carried by NTT DoCoMo because of Apple's refusal to allow carriers to pre-install programs on iOS. This makes Japan's largest carrier the only major operator in the country not to offer the iPhone.
Sony is not only making inroads in its own backyard, it also has tacked on a bit of marketshare globally. According to IDC, at the end of the 2013 first quarter, Sony had 4.5% of the world-wide smartphone market as opposed to the 3.9% it held at the end of the year. But Sony remains far behind Samsung with 30.4 million handsets shipped in 2012 compared to the 218.2 million shipped by Sammy.
Not only is Sony's surge affecting Apple's marketshare in Japan, it also is eating into Samsung's slice of the pie. For the week starting June 3rd, Samsung's marketshare is down to 13% in Japan. For the first time in its history, NTT DoCoMo is focusing on just two smartphones at the moment, the Sony Xperia Z and the Samsung Galaxy S4.
1. istitch (Posts: 168; Member since: 19 Mar 2013)
could have done better if us carriers offer xperia when they get announced
3. pwnarena (Posts: 941; Member since: 15 Feb 2013)
i don't want US carriers to carry the xperia z. it's not the best of the sony yet. i prefer having the honami as the introductory device for the american market if the specs rumored turn out to be true.
5. Jason2k13 (Posts: 650; Member since: 28 Mar 2013)
XZ is cheap now, so alot of people would buy it and of course its waterproof.
13. PunyPoop (Posts: 741; Member since: 18 Jan 2013)
Cheaper in price. Unlike cheaper quality of GS4 with expensive tag.
4. Jason2k13 (Posts: 650; Member since: 28 Mar 2013)
of course sony will do well in Japan, that is their hometown just like apple, samsung and HTC doing well in their own country.
9. KINGJUAN27 (Posts: 195; Member since: 02 Jul 2012)
I agree. Nokia too is #1 in Finland their home market while Blackberry is only #2 in their home market in Canada. Hahaha.
12. Topcat488 (Posts: 1162; Member since: 29 Sep 2012)
Nokia IS NOT #1 in Finland... Hahaha... Sorry :(
15. KINGJUAN27 (Posts: 195; Member since: 02 Jul 2012)
LOL. Nokia is back at #1 in Finland! Your article is old and dated. Yours is as of May, mine is June. Sorry, but u gotta read updated and new articles ;p
6. emadshiny (Posts: 1135; Member since: 05 Dec 2012)
Honami and Togari can help Sony increase its worldwide market share as well as XZ did to some extent.
7. aokde (Posts: 186; Member since: 09 Jul 2012)
(In jessy pinkman's voice):
Yes MR Kaz!
10. TheLolGuy (Posts: 483; Member since: 05 Mar 2013)
Something I have to give Apple credit for is the refusal to let carriers tamper with their phone no matter what, even if it means losing the support of the largest carrier and subsequently, market share.
I hate bloatware and invasive carrier branding so bad!
11. pyradark (Posts: 776; Member since: 10 Jun 2012)
Z will be a best seller, same as last year, people wait Xperia P to be cheap then Bang, P is the best seller. Z will be cheap around august
Sony is now starting to get what they deserve.....
14. icyrock1 (Posts: 303; Member since: 25 Mar 2013)
Now only if they offered this same program in the US...
16. BigDnm01 (Posts: 6; Member since: 04 Sep 2012)
Sony Xperia smartphones have great potential, but not only is Sony not trying to tap into that, they actually slowing down it's progress by releasing several Xperia phones with outdated hardware (CPU, screen,etc) and android version and spending a long time on releasing updates. I'm glad they're releasing the update faster now, though, but still lags behind Samsung, HTC and other android smartphone lines
Another major point is that Sony doesn't do much promoting it's product as heavy as the Samsung and HTC phones. While things are beginning to change with the T then the Z, they promote it heavily around the world, it's still lack recognition here in the USA.
I'd been a fan of Sony for years. my first Xperia is the x10, then the Neo, and now the TX LT29i. in the beginning, Sony would release the phones, but after months would drop them will focusing on the newer models, they did where the 2010 and 2011 no longer have official updates in order to concentrate on the 2012 and now 2013 models.
I really like the x10 design and style. The Neo, I got because of the front-facing camera, which no other models had at that time, I love the Arc styling, but chose the Neo for features.
I'm loving the TX now, and anticipating a 4.2.2 release if the rumors are true. updated a month ago and most issue has been fixed.
Now I'm awaiting the Xperia Z on T-Mobile USA. Glad that i'm on T-Mobile so I can buy this phone on a plan, and it have both HSPA+ and LTE bands, exciting.
I hope Sony will try to increase it's market share in the USA by releasing more of their phones here and on multiple carriers. Also promote heavily in the media.