Sony smartphone shipments reach all-time low as Xperia 1 shows no impact

Sony smartphone shipments reach all-time low as Xperia 1 shows no impact
Sony initially forecasted decent smartphone shipments of 5 million units for the 2019 financial year (April 1, 2019 to March 31, 2020) but was later forced to revise the number down to 4 million units following a particularly terrible April-June quarter. Now, the company has modified its shipment estimates again.

Despite releasing the Xperia 1 not long before and continuing to expand its availability throughout the summer months, Sony managed to sell just 600,000 smartphones to customers across the globe between early July and late September. These results represent yet another record-low for the company’s mobile business and pale in comparison to the likes of Samsung, Apple, and Huawei. The latter, for reference, has sold an average of 600,000 smartphones per day this year.

Sony itself confirmed the numbers were unexpectedly weak by lowering its Xperia shipments forecast for the 2019 fiscal year once again. Now, the Japanese brand expects to sell just 3.5 million smartphones by the end of March which means it’s betting quite heavily on a strong holiday quarter and the Xperia 5. After all, it still needs to sell another 2 million devices by the end of the current fiscal period and the first three months of each year are typically Sony’s weakest.

While the exact level of unprofitability for Sony’s smartphone business during the quarter wasn’t revealed, the Japanese giant has previously confirmed that it doesn’t expect the division to start earning money until the first quarter of 2021. In the meantime, the company is focused on reducing costs and developing a range of 5G smartphones.

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36 Comments

1. notfair

Posts: 761; Member since: Jan 30, 2017

it can;t have when no one wants it. It's weird and expensive. at least the other brands are only expensive. Sony refuses to listen to their remaining fan base.

5. User123456789

Posts: 1084; Member since: Feb 22, 2019

Because some people would suggest notch.

11. XP007

Posts: 9; Member since: Oct 21, 2019

As far as I know, most Sony fans just want Sony to focus on improving and simplifying the most important basic features of a smart phone like front facing stereo speaker with great sound quality or better image and video processing. But it seems that they are too stubborn and instead they add features that most people will not use like creator mode.

17. Dr.Phil

Posts: 2474; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

I think if they were smart and wanted people to take a look at the brand again they would remake the Xperia Play. With games like Fortnite and COD Mobile proving popular, I think it’s about time that a handset was introduced that combines that dedicated controller with mobile gaming. It can’t be a half baked attempt either but rather something that looks like a mobile console that’s also a phone.

29. ROBLAW

Posts: 9; Member since: Aug 29, 2019

I bought an Xperia 1. I love it. It's a hell of a lot better than a notch or beveled edges.

35. plsnoregforcomments

Posts: 28; Member since: Mar 29, 2017

Just you and around less than half a million others around the world (Q2'19 and Q3'19 Xperia sales numbers combined, minus Xperia 5 and Xperia 10 sales). For the rest of us non-fanboys, or who used to own an Xperia and no longer desire one, we have moved on.

2. DBozz

Posts: 102; Member since: Sep 19, 2019

When you are not interested on mobile phones just quit it and take rest for sometime and come back with a bang sony! Everyone has their own time... like what nokia had and apple Samsung having it now!!!! You will get it one day...

36. plsnoregforcomments

Posts: 28; Member since: Mar 29, 2017

If you haven't noticed already, Sony's CEO Yoshida is planning to transition the company from devices to services and subscriptions. Even Playstation consoles might not be safe. The only thing keeping Xperia alive is the legendary Japanese stubbornness - a refusal to acknowledge that the ship has sailed and there's no economic sense to burn more money quarter after quarter, year after year.

3. AzeriFire

Posts: 1; Member since: Aug 14, 2008

Sony was my favorite brand. But it seems Sony have no plans to listen to customers. Weird design, expensive and with more problems than other brand phones. And yes, my comment is just doubled above one by @notfair.

4. Takeharu

Posts: 288; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

The Xperia 1 was just kinda weird tbh. I think Sony needs to embrace what they are; a giant tech company that specifies in display, camera and audio quality. Their phones are great but nothing stands out (except for the 21:9 ratio).

6. User123456789

Posts: 1084; Member since: Feb 22, 2019

They think they can improve sales by leaving markets. That is stupid. Stop cutting costs like use Samsung image sensors. They are not same level of exmor. No wonder the 52mm has awful photos. Same for front camera. Selfie from XZ is much better.

7. OneLove123

Posts: 1244; Member since: Aug 28, 2018

4k with a small a55 battery.

30. ROBLAW

Posts: 9; Member since: Aug 29, 2019

The battery in the Xperia 1 lasts a long time. With 7nm chip sets it doesn't use as much as previous devices

8. jellmoo

Posts: 2645; Member since: Oct 31, 2011

The definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing but expecting different results. Sony has been doing the same thing but with terrible results for years. They aren't making devices that resonate with people. They continue to make "meh" devices at best, and then try and sell them at high prices. Reducing costs isn't going to save the division. 5G smartphones isn't going to save the division. The only thing they can do is step back, reevaluate, and produce devices that people actually want. Hell, they have one of the most popular brands in the world in Playstation. Start leveraging that in your smartphone business.

13. liteon163

Posts: 67; Member since: Jan 24, 2017

They tried that once already (Xperia Play). It didn't work. Sure, chips are better now. But I'm not sure there are enough players out there to justify such a narrowly focused device.

18. jellmoo

Posts: 2645; Member since: Oct 31, 2011

Except the Xperia Play wasn't actually Plauystation branded, nor did it feature real Playstation integration. It was also pretty badly specced at the time. It was using a single core 1GHz processor when everyone had already moved onto dual core ones. Even if a revamped version is a niche device, it would be something to try. Clearly what they're releasing now isn't working.

31. ROBLAW

Posts: 9; Member since: Aug 29, 2019

Sony isn't doing the same thing with the Xperia 1. It's a great device. I'm using it right now

9. Abdbaas

Posts: 154; Member since: Apr 05, 2016

Same flex as HTC. Seems that they're failing on purpose. How can you make such crap devices. Should have listened to your customers

10. Abdbaas

Posts: 154; Member since: Apr 05, 2016

And follow the trends

12. renan_batista2

Posts: 22; Member since: May 11, 2013

I just sent to Joshua, the guy who is writing this article, he mentioned that the 600,000 units were sold between July - September 2019 when you check Sony´s financial release in the 4th page it mentions Q2 2019 with 600,000 sales (Q2 = April - June). So this article is not correct.

21. joshuaswingle

Posts: 644; Member since: Apr 03, 2018

As I have already explained in an email to you, this article is correct. Sony’s fiscal Q2 2019 corresponds with Q3.

14. Ikechukwu

Posts: 260; Member since: Oct 03, 2011

Make your phones like you have some sense and not just blindly follow trends haha. I've used a lot of Xperias, XZ2 Premium being the most recent and I just don't get how they manage to keep messing things up. I figured they'd be doing fine if they didn't start selling at $999, kept the headphone jack, put in bigger batteries, and sort out image processing. A lot of people kept giving feedback but it just fell on deaf ears I guess lol

15. Preyash

Posts: 4; Member since: Oct 30, 2019

Its not that sony's phone are expensive but rather its the company itself don't listen to their own remaining costumer's.. Mainly Sony was selling his phones for past 5 years based on its fans rather then phones looks. But even then sony didnt try to listen to its own fan costumer's who r actually buying their expensive phones. Even in past 3 years what ive seen sony made thr own costumes feel miserable after buying thr top flagship phones. I was one of them. So when u buy ur favourite company's expensive top flagship phones and then get turn down by company to listen to ur problem or even never solving ur problems at all then ofcource Sony was going to loss those costumer's, which were already low to begin with..other companies r trying to make new fan of thr company by geving them when they desire by looks or by providing satisfactory services..where else Sony is losing their only costumers..

16. Preyash

Posts: 4; Member since: Oct 30, 2019

The last time i brought sony phone was 2.5y back when i brought Sony's top flagship at that time naming Sony z3+ ( or rather Sony Z4 in some countries). The specification of the phones were great.. even the working of the phone was smooth at 1st. But then it started heating up a lot.. even while playing games it was hanging a lot. But some how i managed it. Then after 3 months of using my phone i used it under-water not even in pool but just dipped it in my bathroom that too for 1min or so just to show my brother that its waterproof. Guess what the water went in , not from the rubber cover over simcard slot but from somewhere else. I went to Sony service center and 1st they refused to tale my phone in saying it must have been my fault saying i must have used it in solty water or my cap was off . But after fighting with them for hours at last they took my phone saying they will check it in thr own company after how the water went in. Then after 2 weeks they told me yes there was some problem in phone that water was getting inside from some side joints and they told me either they will fix my problem or can give me new refurbished phone instead.. i took refurbished phone with change of colour.. but this whole process took about 2 months time and during that time i was without phone . And after getting the replacement refurbished phone from Sony i noticed this new phone was getting more and more heated and now i couldn't play any game at all due to heating and hanging my phone. Till date Sony didnt solve my problems about heating up y phone soo much.. So in the end the whole year and half i used Sony phone i felt misrable that i brought expensive Sony phone with great specification still i couldn't play game or use it they way i want it. Even when 1st i got to know that my sony z3+ has factory fault about water went inside company didnt took that seriously and insted of geving me new phone they handed me refurbished phone which was even bad at heating then my previous new phone. So after that i thought even after spending huge amount on Sony top flagship phones company didnt listen to thr costumes then why waste my money on their phone. And i switched my brand. Even now i want to buy sony xz3 or even xperia 1 but what of same thing happened again and i was left with unusable expensive phone in my hand and get all misrable again. So no thks sony. Ive had it enough.

20. Feanor

Posts: 1410; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

I feel your pain, but there are two things to consider: 1. The Xperia Z3+ (Z4) had a Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor, which had severe issues with overheating and got into trouble many manufacturers that used it. Of course this is not an excuse for Sony to have released a subpar product, but they were not the only ones caught in the 810 scandal, and definitely this is a unique case that doesn't affect other Sony mobile phones. 2. It's bad luck that your waterproofing failed. I had always Sony phones, I wash them regularly under the tap and I never had any problem with waterproofing. In your case, it may be aggravating, but it's also true that neither Sony, nor any other phone manufacturer is obliged by warranty to replace a phone that got ruined by water, so the fact that they replaced it was already more than what they were legally obliged to do.

23. Preyash

Posts: 4; Member since: Oct 30, 2019

But dude. Its wasn't my fault at all.. even when i was having argument with them for few hours i told them its been 3 mónths only and have them check if the cap rubber is not torn a part which they confirmed is in perfect condition.. thats why i told them to do fresh water test right thr and then . Ip68 means underwater 1.5meter or 1meter about 30 minutes long and it didnt last 1min. So only after that argument they considered my phone to take it for an waterproof test at thr main branch.. and after that as it turn out it was thr manufacturer fault all along. I got that if water gets inside its warranty voids.. but only if it was ur fault.. and I during that time i got to know that Snapdragon 810 was over heating phone then also company should take the responsibility for the costumers who buy thr flagship phones and either give them replacement or should try to fix them.. i wont even mind if they take them and give some more discount on new coming new flagship phones but Sony company did nothing.. not just me ive read all around the world facing same heating issue.. And let me remind u something else too, even after knowing SG810 has major heating issue what company did next is they launched z5 and z5 premium with same SG810. Wtf r u thinking Sony. Even Samsung had 2-3 phones previously launched with SG810 but as soon as knowing its heating issue they stopped those products on top with thr new phones they used lower version of SG .. look at those time i used almost 1/3 of monthly income just to buy z3+ on EMI.. So when customers like me r bound to get angry with Sony. When u already had bad experience with SG810 then why launch new flagship with same chip. Even 70% of the z5 and z5 premium users have same issue with heating. So its like Sony is tring to make more and more fan based costumers to stop buying thr phones at all.. at those times even i wrote many emails to main Sony branch and now when i look back at past 3y times what i said was happening. And the selling of Sony Xperia phones r way down then they have ever been. Remember when one of the music ipod had battery problem around 6/7y back. Which only costs 4-5k indian ruppes.. and what Apple did was amazed to all around the world.. they took all those ipods and replaced them with new model which were costing 8k Indian ruppes that time. So im not saying Sony also do this things. But they should provide some solutions to thr costumers since they only had hand full of costumers to buy their phones... Trust me i dont know if u can see it or not. But since those 3 phones (z3,z3+ and z5) Sony had lost quite a bit costumers.. and now when they r geving good phones but nobody is willing to bet their money on buying Sony phones.. still im biggest fan of Sony that i still buying his TV and all the other stuffs . Main thing i love about Sony is nobody i mean nobody can compair Sony video & display quality on phones and also in TV departments..

24. Feanor

Posts: 1410; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

I had the Z5 Premium with Snapdragon 810 and it was not overheating so badly, because Sony understood the mistake of the Z4 and they added a heat pipe for heat dissipation. You had a bad experience but not all Sony phones are so bad. I'm very happy and emotionally attached to my XZ3.

32. ROBLAW

Posts: 9; Member since: Aug 29, 2019

That sounds like a bad experience. I have the Xperia 1 and have played many games on it. I haven't noticed much heat at all from it. Battery lasts a long time too. probably the 7nm chip helps with all of that

19. Eoghanjp

Posts: 1; Member since: Oct 30, 2019

Live in Japan and Love my Sony xz premium... But Sony seems to be a slave to Docomo... 128gb international, only 64 in Japan. Can buy on Sony store internationally, but limited to docomo in Japan!!!?? Wtf I can buy an iPhone at Apple, a Pixel 4 at Google but I CAN'T buy a Sony except through Docomo?????? Wake up Sony!!!!

22. japkoslav

Posts: 1539; Member since: Feb 19, 2017

As an fresh Xperia 5 owner I must say - I am not surprised at all.

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