Sony Mobile insists the end is not near as it closes major smartphone plant

Sony Mobile insists the end is not near as it closes major smartphone plant
While Sony's fall from grace in the global mobile industry hasn't been as dramatic as those suffered by Nokia, BlackBerry, and even HTC, it's more than obvious the Japan-based tech and entertainment behemoth needs to do something about its smartphone division. Unfortunately, as the company's various attempts at revising and transforming the Xperia portfolio over the last few years have failed to turn a profit, the time has come for more drastic austerity measures.

After laying off 200 employees in Europe to cut costs across a number of mobile business areas, Sony has confirmed long-rumored plans to close an entire factory in China earlier today (via Reuters). The Beijing plant will reportedly cease all smartphone manufacturing activities in "the next few days", although Sony does intend to "shift production" to a different factory in Thailand in a move expected to greatly contribute to reducing expenses by around 50 percent.

The ultimate goal is to make the smartphone division profitable again as early as 2020 after years and years of bleeding serious money, but it remains to be seen how much of a mobile business Sony will be left with when (or if) that happens. According to the latest official estimates, yearly Xperia shipments are down to as little as 6.5 million units. To put that number into perspective, Samsung's Galaxy S10 lineup was projected to hit 10 million global unit sales in just its first month of availability.

Of course, Sony has repeatedly claimed in the past year or so it has no intention to abandon the smartphone market on the eve of a 5G revolution. Once again, the company is highlighting its strategic measures are simply meant to strengthen the business rather than killing it piece by piece. And while it's definitely not unprecedented to see a major smartphone vendor cut its Chinese costs, it remains unclear exactly how much of Sony's Bejing operations will "shift" to Thailand.

Either way, this probably won't impact the Xperia 1 launch or even the rumored Xperia 2. What comes next, however, is anyone's guess. 

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11 Comments

1. Guseinguliev

Posts: 76; Member since: Mar 04, 2019

Kingdom of heaven! need to think so create smartphones.

2. Djz89

Posts: 431; Member since: Aug 25, 2014

I like xperia phones, this is good news, one of the few companies dearing to do something different and special. Hope they make it, because they do make som great phones.

3. User123456789

Posts: 400; Member since: Feb 22, 2019

Z2 and z3 were the best phones of 2014. Still they lost money ....

4. Sealblaighter

Posts: 417; Member since: Jan 26, 2014

Their camera sucks, and there where problems with the water resistance too on a lot of their phones. Of course people have bought other phones.

10. sgodsell

Posts: 6737; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

They make camera sensors for all the major OEMs, including Apple.

6. dazed1

Posts: 777; Member since: Jul 28, 2015

Lol what a joke

7. User123456789

Posts: 400; Member since: Feb 22, 2019

S5 = poor band aid design plastic that was worse than the plastic used for galaxy pocket . Poor waterproofing ( need to cover headphone jack and make sure back was correctly attached), poor battery endurance, 4K video limited to 10 min, yellowish amoled, mono speaker, very slow touchwiz, slow updates. Even LG G3 was better despite all issues

8. maherk

Posts: 6684; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

That still doesn't make their phones were the best.

5. dazed1

Posts: 777; Member since: Jul 28, 2015

Profitable with king of bezels, and now 21:9, rofl

9. maherk

Posts: 6684; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

They should've kept the XZ3's design, put the fps in a higher place, and add the two extra cameras that are found on their latest flagship. The XZ2 Premium is one of the most underrated smartphones of all time, it's just that the wide body was a turn off to a lot of people. Still, they would've had a much bigger success with their smartphones if they made them available in more countries, and maybe they lowered the price a bit.

11. jack123

Posts: 275; Member since: Jan 07, 2013

The problem from sony are poor marketing and releasing phone too late.

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