Rumor: Sony may be ending the Xperia Tablet series

by: Matthew BensonFebruary 3, 2016

sony logo mwc 2015 6

In a decision that is sure to upset many of the fans Sony has left, it has been reported by a Sony store manager in Japan that the conglomerate may be ending the Xperia Tablet series. Dozens of websites – and even some stores – have now made mention of the story.

The origin of the speculation was apparently pending promotional material that reflected sales would be ending in early March. The caveat is that this apparently pertains to Wi-Fi only models, so in theory the cellular variants may still stick around.

The source responsible for the news also made note that any future tablet product is currently “pending” or “undecided” depending on how one wishes to translate the word “未定”. It is unclear as to if this refers strictly to Wi-Fi variants, or all of the company’s tablets in general.

What’s the cause for concern?

Before addressing the issue at large, it is important to consider the Japanese market in and of itself. Should this news pan out, it would come as a somewhat serious blow to Sony’s already limited selection of Android-based products on sale in the country. Unlike in outside Asian markets, as well as in Europe, many – if not all – of Sony’s low and mid range smartphones are not sold in Japan. This means the Xperia Tablet is a more prominent product when it comes to overall offerings.

In addition, while the idea of a Wi-Fi only model might not seem as important, it is relevant to point out that the Xperia Z Ultra was originally released in Japan as a Wi-Fi tablet, which was then later picked up by the country’s smallest major carrier, KDDI au and sold as a traditional phone like it was elsewhere.


The Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact

Perhaps even more relevant and – somewhat – more recent, the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact was only released as a Wifi device in Japan, despite numerous Asian markets receiving it as a full blown cellular consideration. For explanations unknown, not a single carrier offered the mini’s mobile make.

Still, Sony’s tablets have consistently been sold at extremely high price points, with even the Z3 Tablet Compact selling for over $450 when it released here. The full-blown carrier models are even more expensive, usually retailing for around $800 when purchased at full price. This puts the Xperia Tablet brand in direct competition with Apple’s iPad. Apple in and of itself, almost always outsells Sony in Japan with respect to the mobile space, especially in recent years.

Meanwhile, similar products are often significantly cheaper. As Sony’s brand name value decreases over time for some, so too may the perceived benefit of spending such money for a tablet from the famous OEM. Another problem? When push comes to shove the differences between the Xperia Z2 Tablet and the Xperia Z4 Tablet, for example, may not be strong enough to justify the financial outlay for some.

What future may follow

Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet-19

The Xperia Z4 Tablet

Sony didn’t release a Z5 Tablet last year which came as a bit of a surprise given that there has been an Xperia Tablet released along side each of its major Z-series smartphone offerings. The Z5 of course, was released mere months after the Z4 (or Xperia Z3+ depending on the market’s naming convention) and it may have been decided that another tablet would be redundant.

Nonetheless, Fall 2015 would have been an excellent time to put out a follow-up to the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact, however the opportunity was thus passed on.

The decision to terminate tablets – if true – may make more sense when considering a post on this subject by which stated:

We know that tablets made just 5% of Sony Mobile’s revenues back in 2013 and that was expected to shrink even further. Given the R&D costs of developing and supporting new devices, Sony may feel that producing another tablet for 2016 might not be commercially viable.

It remains to be seen what exactly will transpire this year. A leak has already surfaced that purports to picture the Xperia Z6 smartphone, and the design is a dramatic departure from the more easily identifiable image the Z series has used since its inception.

Wrap up

Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet-24

Should Sony formally withdraw from the tablet marketplace, it will mean the end of a brand that many users loved, and the end of yet another high end tablet offering for customers to choose from.

We want to hear what you think about this situation. Would you care if Sony dropped its Xperia Tablet line, or are you a loyal fan who will deeply miss it? Be sure to take our survey below, and then leave your thoughts in the comments section so all can hear what you have to say!

  • Took them long enough.

  • Lim Ming Quan

    If this is true, it’s gonna be sad cuz I’ve always loved Sony products and I’ve the Z3TC and I love it’s PS4 Remote Play function!

    • Sorin Rusu

      Remote Play works excellent with other devices, too. It’s not oficially supported, but there are ways. I do it every day, just for fun, from 2 Samsung devices. I’m sure other devices are equally capable as well.

  • Dusan

    My Z2 tablet broke, I was waiting on Z5…. well, I hope this is only about WIFI version as I only use 4G.

  • Avieshek Rajkhowa

    It has tablets?

  • Милен Стефанов

    Sony just going out of mobile business- today tablets, tomorrow phones…

    • Nadia Al-Belushi

      Sony’s biggest problem is its poor marketing. I can’t find a single Sony tablet in Kuwait or any other Middle Eastern country, for that matter.

      It’s like Sony doesn’t care.

    • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

      Tablet market is struggling in general. It’s only but kinda expected for Sony to drop it and focus on phones entirely. Most of the OEMs don’t give a damn about tablets either. Samsung hasn’t introduces anything other than the ridiculous Galaxy View, LG’s offering are average at best, Nvidia is doing 8″ only, Apple just keep rereleasing same tablet every year, etc

  • subm



    They were selling like hotcakes too!

  • Degus Jacoby Pradana

    I think in the end only Samsung n chinese OEM will survived in android world

  • Jason C

    Why can’t they drop their price? Really, their price should be on par with LG!

    • Милен Стефанов

      Why on par? Sony’s tablets are just average + brand is going down- reasonable price tag is at least 10% lower than LG…

  • Mohit Shelke

    i for once think that they are right…if there comes a z5 tablet…it will be criticized for not being different from z4 tablet …nor are many people buying sony tablets right now…Sony should consolidate their product lineup …bringing in lesser products but of higher value for customers…once its back in a good position they can take off from where they left

  • please don’t make it stop :(

  • Diego Opazo SV-Cross

    Google needs to get the tablet game together. Only on terms of OS.

  • Abhijeet

    Put Windows 10 on the tablets, Sony.

    • Nadia Al-Belushi

      It won’t make a difference. In fact, Windows tablets are bleh.

      • Abhijeet

        Yeah, i guess that is true. IMHO windows generally takes away the concerns about carriers and updates from Sony.
        But more importantly, you’ve got to release the goddamn product before assuming it is a failure. I never saw this tablet anywhere except youtube.

  • Kunal Narang

    I see the same thing happening to their smartphone lineup as well. It’s just a matter of time.

  • AndroidBrian

    I purchased the Xperia Z4 Tablet. This Tablet IMO is the best Tablet money can buy running Apple or Android. Tablet is freaking amazing. Not sure why it was never released in the US.

  • Alex

    The Z4 tablet is one of the if not the best tablet out there. Period

  • s2weden2000

    as the article says may be ending “xperia tablet series” a name change perhaps …

  • Nadia Al-Belushi

    Sony is beyond disappointing. It stopped making Windows laptops, it sold its PC business, it never bothered making Chromebooks, it failed to market its smartphones and tablets properly, and it killed every good idea it came up with (e.g. the Xperia Z Ultra series).

    All Sony ever cares about these days is gaming.

    • Sony just care about PlayStation now. All eggs in one basket. What could go wrong. /s

      • Nadia Al-Belushi

        Tell me about it! >_<

        At this rate, Sony will go bust in the coming years.

        Japan needs to make a strong comeback in the electronics industry! It's being outmuscled and outsmarted by China, Taiwan and Korea right now. I think Sharp will lead the way for Japan in the future. At least Sharp is thinking outside the box, especially with the RoBoHoN lol.

  • jax

    They should cut off spending on low and mid range phones and not theit tab. Still have my 3 year old Xperia Z ultra at still works great, still waiting for replacement from sony with the premium specs like the cancelled xperia z4 ultra and not the diet ones like c5 ultra and t2 ultra. hope there will be a z5 ultra or even z6 ultra when my z ultra dies. LOL!

    • Raju Kumar

      Yes very true. I am too using z ultra from last 3 years. I have used many top brands but I found sony an stable phone compared to other top brands. I am waiting for z6 ultra.

  • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

    It would VERY damn sad if they dropped the lineup completely. Their android tablets are arguably the best out there, packing the most attractive hardware AND software, with excellent perfomance and amazing battery life (I speak as a Tablet Z2 owner myself)

    If this is ture – well… I guess I’ll drop Android entirely as a Tablet platform and buy myself a Surface Pro or something, I can’t stand how unoptimized iOS for tablets is

  • Kamalnath

    hope they learn to choose more sensible headings for their article…

  • sue

    Don’t do it Sony.i promise to buy your new tablet.i love Sony stuff.others want to buy it too

  • Gee Coc

    I love sony tablet but in the philippines z4 and z3 is tooo far expensive than buying a Samsung s6 edge plus worth of 45k, that is why most people buying samsung not only that the service center is very hard to reach as compared with samsung but by comparing too products sony is much better specially the entertainment and durability.

  • nik

    Ive got the z3 tablet compact and it amazing the only thing I want is a 2k screen and it would be perfect , I’m happy to spend the dough.
    Hell I would have got the Sony phone also if the did more in the camera department .