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Sony CEO sees a stagnating smartphone market

Sony CEO sees a stagnating smartphone market
Sony CEO sees a stagnating smartphone market
The lack of innovation and increasing number of poor performers in the sector are cited as key downfalls in the smartphone world.

Sony CEO Kazuo Hirai is predicting the end of an era for smartphones. His bleak outlook is based on the fact that the industry has so far seen no real innovations for more than five years. The sector is also particularly filled with short-lived players including BlackBerry, Nokia, HTC, and Sony itself with no realistic short term or even long term plans to return to profitability. Hirai currently has a lofty goal of bringing Sony back on track in the face of rising competitors overseas.

Examples of recent restructurings at the Japanese conglomerate include selling off its Vaio computer business and even its Tokyo headquarters. By the end of next month, Hirai wants to clean up its Sony Mobile division as well with rigorous cuts and product streamlining. The manufacturer only recently announced Xperia X series at MWC 2016.

If Sony is predicting the end of the smartphone as we know it, then what will replace it? Hirai had no answer and was only able to affirm that it will be more important for Sony to remain in the communications business as a whole instead of pondering about what the next big device may be. Currently, Samsung and Apple dominate the global smartphone market, so it remains questionable if Sony will ever launch a mobile product that will connect to consumers in the same way.


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Ronald Tiefenthäler/ Allen Ngo, 2016-02-29 (Update: 2016-02-29)