Sony has finally gained full control over Sony Ericsson after they paid 1.05 billion euro for the shares they didn’t own before. So what does this mean for Sony and where does the smartphone division go from here?
Sony realizes that smartphones are becoming more important than ever – perhaps more important than simple phones ever were. The smartphone doesn’t just fulfill the simple function of calling anymore. It’s also your very personal computing that you take everywhere with you. And in many poor countries, a cheap smartphone may be the only type of computer young people could have for years, before they even have their own PC.
A smartphone is able to offer you almost the full web experience, although on a smaller screen, and you can use pretty much any chat program you want. It’s also a device that provides educational or entertaining content in the form of videos, movies, books or games. And speaking of games, Sony makes the PSP and the PS3 consoles, so they will also try make these 2 divisions collaborate better, so they can have a competitive advantage in market.
Sony has already started doing this with the PS Suite on their new Xperia phones, and they promised to make the PS Suite available for more phones, too. Unfortunately, while the strategy sounds good, Sony hasn’t been so good at executing it. They’ve mostly just used very old PS1 games (not even the PSP ones), and with barely any new games, probably because they are trying to save those for their PS Vita device, and also because they’ve been pretty slow with putting the best tech in their phones, so their phones haven’t been among the most capable so far.
Hopefully, now that they completely own the Sony Ericsson mobile division, they’ll be able demand better devices from them, and ask them to make the phones a lot more competitive and forward-looking. As soon as they make a device that most people recognize as the best phone on the market at the time of launch, it’s when they’ll become a mobile player that the media will take a lot more seriously, and will help them gain more mind-share, as well as market share.