After giving market leaders Apple and Samsung a huge head start, Sony looks set to finally enter the global smartphone war this week. Expected to utilise Google’s Android operating system, this new range of handsets is set to be announced at Las Vegas’ Consumer Electronics Show this week.
Of the handsets rumoured, one is supposed to feature a five-inch display, meaning it will occupy the space somewhere between a smartphone and a tablet. The Japanese technology firm’s sales and marketing chief Dennis van Schie had previously revealed that Sony is due to announce a flagship model to compete directly with Apple’s iPhone and Samsung’s Galaxy S III, and with the company making losses for each of the last four years, it could really benefit from taking a slice of the smartphone market expected to be worth more than $150 billion next year.
Much of Sony’s financial woe stems from the fact that it has made a loss on every PlayStation 3 console sold since launch, with the company now $198 million in the red. Kuzo Hirai, who has been Sony’s CEO since the beginning of 2012, has made it his modus operandi to make the firm profitable again within two years, so capitalising on this market is pivotal to achieving this goal.
As the new smartphones are expected to run on Android, any success for Sony will also be a major boost for Google in its continued war with Apple over smartphone market share.
The Consumer Electrics Show is also expected to feature a new model from Samsung, featuring a flexible screen no less. While prototypes are expected to be shown at the event, the phone is not expected to be made available to consumers for some time yet.