Sony may follow HTC and give up on low-end smartphones

Sony may follow HTC and give up on low-end smartphones
It may be a bit surprising to smartphone owners in North America, but Sony is actually 3rd in smartphone shipments globally, albeit still well behind Apple and Samsung. We may not see a lot of Sony smartphones around here, but Sony is a big time manufacturer, even if its market share has been slipping. And, like another top manufacturer, HTC, that has seen its share slip, Sony may be ready to give up on low-end smartphones.

HTC made its claim back in June that it would leave behind low-end devices and focus on giving customers top-notch experiences, but has still seen its market share fall. Now, Sony's Xperia Marketing Manager, Stephen Sneeden is saying Sony may look to do the same thing. He told CNET:

The company seems to think that the best path for Sony to push closer to Apple and Samsung is to focus on its flagship line, and the mid-tier line of smartphones, dropping the low-end. With this strategy, Sony wants to be able to close the gap between it and the leaders within two years. 

source: CNET

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51 Comments

53. AaronBenjamin

Posts: 4; Member since: Jan 26, 2013

Oh no please not! I'm a student and I love Sony but I can't afford Sony anymore if they only produce high-end smartphones. Won't Sony face a drop in sales if they only produce high-end phones?? A lot of my friends use Sony Xperias' like Go, Sola, P and so on. They are all in the same age group as me.

50. jsdechavez

Posts: 818; Member since: Jul 20, 2012

Sony should cover all levels, much like they did for 2012, much like Samsung did. Sure, the profit margins are high with the high-end but popularity and brand-recognition would diminish if they go high-end. If Sony does go the HTC way, you all know the troubles HTC faces now, right?

47. Yummy

Posts: 117; Member since: Mar 28, 2012

Yes some of their products are a little behind but they really do put effort into designing a quality product. My Xperia TL is OUTSTANDING.

45. Firedrops

Posts: 254; Member since: Sep 06, 2011

After HTC swore to give up on low-end models, they released more low-end models than ever. Anything under One S, and the entire Desire line of products were low-end models. Their only real high-end models were HOX/+ and Butterfly. 1/4 of their releases this year. Also, did I hear them say that they'll stop churning out devices every month?

43. InspectorGadget80 unregistered

Just dont get rid of your sd card sony. Not like htc did.

42. ryq24

Posts: 876; Member since: Oct 17, 2011

if sony went thru with that plan they will lose the number three spot to the chinese. sony is not apple. they should follow samsung's strategy of having phone for all segment.

44. lumia920

Posts: 112; Member since: Nov 27, 2012

phone for all slogan were first raised by nokia.

41. dmakun

Posts: 382; Member since: Jun 06, 2011

Sony should be very weary of copying HTC's strategy. HTC is where it is currently because they have no clue. My advice to Sony is, unless they are losing market share, DON'T FIX WHAT ISN'T BROKEN.

39. REYNER

Posts: 187; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

i think that would be a bad move if ever. sony is slowly making there way up because they are the only manufacturer who was able to offer sets of phone in low-end. mid-range,upper mid-range and flagships and people likes such kind of offers how i hope they will continue offering low-end and upper mid range but lessen the numbers of different models

38. Kalevro

Posts: 56; Member since: Sep 11, 2011

Sony, bi*ches. anyway Sony could catch up with Apple and Samsung but it will take a very long time to surpass Samsung because once you take the big lead it is hard to be pased. Samsung have to make a iPhone 5-turd aka. a mistake or a phone with lots of problems for Sony to easily catch up. Apple will eventually fall but it will sue everyone's ass before that and then shut down with half of Earths finances.

31. pyradark

Posts: 895; Member since: Jun 10, 2012

I know Sony can still hold this year, remember the success of Xperia P, so selling Midrange and high end still a great strategy, plus sony makes some big name last year, so it wont be a problemo this year as Xperia Z hits 2M views on youtube.

29. hkxm8

Posts: 64; Member since: Apr 08, 2012

Sony value they quality so high that they can't make a good thing with good price.

26. tmcr7

Posts: 180; Member since: Nov 02, 2011

If you commit to making flagship phones, Sony must always bring the latest hardware to the market. They were always 1 year late in terms of specs.

32. pyradark

Posts: 895; Member since: Jun 10, 2012

Yeah, but shockingly they are 3rd behind sammy and apple with thier dual core 2011 hardware phone. You know its not all about hardware, people are not all geeks, who wants power, some are just want somethin shiny in their pocket and other just want durable phone.

22. thunderbolt

Posts: 76; Member since: Jan 10, 2013

Hope their PLA (Profit Loss Accounting) also doesn't follow HTC ...

33. pyradark

Posts: 895; Member since: Jun 10, 2012

That WONT happen at the moment, i see great momentum this year for sony, as long they provide more carrier, in terms of price, its overprice at first they easily goes cheap in the follwing months. Xperia Go is selling great in Asia

34. thunderbolt

Posts: 76; Member since: Jan 10, 2013

Such phones they would want to get out of is what the article meant i think.

18. Tsepz_GP

Posts: 1227; Member since: Apr 12, 2012

The only company this sort of strategy truly works for is Apple, and even they may be looking into making a budget iPhone. If they want to do this then they must begin making brilliant optics for their phones and great SoCs, so they can stick out in the crowd. ANYWAY, Best of luck to them, they'll need it.

16. techloverNYC

Posts: 601; Member since: Nov 20, 2012

Im not suprise. ps3,ps3,sony tv, sony laptops,etc when it comes to sony I can never link it to cheap products. First thing pop up is high price tags lol

15. Starscream9

Posts: 10; Member since: Jan 11, 2013

Sony is rising but they are making the same mistake which htc made...that they arent updating their 2012 phones in time, not to mention they dropped thier xperia u, sola support. and to the rest of the devices they said they will update them in march-april to andriod 4.1...I hope sony does not produce too many phones that they get lost.

20. thunderbolt

Posts: 76; Member since: Jan 10, 2013

Yes they are tooooooo slow on updates. I dont care about sexyness coz even sexiest of phone starts looking boring after few months when newer model comes out. T/TX looks so boring now within a few months. It starts becoming more boring if you don't get updates or get updates that hoses camera or something else.

14. blackice214

Posts: 168; Member since: Jan 03, 2013

Yea Xperia Z

13. emadshiny

Posts: 1144; Member since: Dec 05, 2012

this strategy will success only in one situation: Sony must beat all high end products of other companies and this will happen if they bring highest specs faster than others, release their updates on time, cover every part of world with their products and the most important, deliver their products with reasonable price.

24. Retro-touch unregistered

They are overpriced so don't see their plan working similar to HTC, unless you can offer the best experience, have availability and good marketing it would work, I've yet to see an ad for any phone ever, Samsung market like they are possessed, they are everywhere, on radio, billboards, tv, most sites, it'd be strange not to know of their new flagship phone in any third world country I see tons of people with S2,S3 and Note 2, never HTC or Sony

49. jsdechavez

Posts: 818; Member since: Jul 20, 2012

In the my office its Sony vs. Samsung. Some of the girls use iphones though.

12. Johnnokia

Posts: 1158; Member since: May 27, 2012

The only company that cares about poor people is Nokia

27. Nathan_ingx

Posts: 4769; Member since: Mar 07, 2012

You Joh-ned (nailed) it! :D

11. nicholassss

Posts: 368; Member since: May 10, 2012

I love the way sony phones look but i dont have any experience using them.

8. bluescreen

Posts: 154; Member since: Nov 22, 2012

makes sense if u think about it....everything sony makes seems to be on the over priced side so why not just scrap the cheap stuff and make everything obscenely over priced....i like this idea....NOT!!!

6. MeoCao unregistered

I think this is a mistake. SS proved that you can sell both high and low end phones and anything in between and be wildly successful. What SS does is using economy of scales. a relative small sales force can sell many variants of phones at the same time while big ads cost will be shared by those phones. Sony does not have big power like Apple yet, so by limiting the market Sony either have to have small ads budget or high ads cost per phone. I guess selling cheaper phones does not harm Sony brand as long as those phones offer good experience even with lower specs.

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