Speaking to the Financial Review, Kazuo Hirai – the president of Sony – outlined the company’s plans for the post-smartphone era, with a special focus on VR.
Though Sony’s Xperia XZ Premium managed to impress everyone with its 4K HDR display and a blazing-fast Snapdragon 835 chipset, the company’s smartphone business has never been a serious threat to companies like Samsung and Apple. Hirai admits that Sony is not looking to win the handset game but says that the company will remain in the smartphone market in preparation for the next paradigm shift:
A paradigm shift in how we communicate with each other occurs every 10 years or so, but if we don’t remain currently in the business then we don’t get to play or we don’t get to create the next paradigm shift of communication, we basically throw a towel in and lose all the relationships with our retailers and carriers around the world. If we did that then whatever idea we may come up with, we’re not going to be able to bring to market quickly enough.
Although Sony doesn’t have a concrete idea of what the post-smartphone era might look like, the company has been experimenting with the Internet of Things or more specifically wearables as well as hearables. More specifically, the Japanese electronics company seems convinced that within 10 years, VR will become a serious component in how we interact with media and communicate with one another.
Sony seems convinced that within 10 years, VR will become a serious component in how we interact with media and communicate with one another.
Hirai adds that Sony’s experience with VR as an entertainment platform – the PlayStation VR – will provide a huge advantage for the company. Sony’s ambitions go beyond personal entertainment, however: the company also sees unique business to business opportunities that could emerge once VR makes a serious impact. Although Hirai did not provide details on Sony’s future products, he assures that the company will continue to innovate and take calculated risks and that meaningful products will become available once the company is fully ready for the global market.
Do you think VR is the next big thing? Will Sony surpass Samsung and Apple to become a leader in VR technology? Let us know your thoughts!