Sony plans on buying out Ericsson's stake in their joint mobility venture in order to create a consolidated platform more capable of battling Samsung and Apple.
plans on buying out Ericsson's stake in the two companies' mobile-device
concerns for $1.5 billion, according to reports.
the beginning of something which I think is quite magical," Sony Chairman Sir
Howard Stringer said at a London news conference, according to Reuters
"We can more rapidly and more widely offer consumers smartphones, laptops,
tablets and televisions that seamlessly connect with one another and open up
new worlds of online entertainment."
the terms of the new agreement, Sony will apparently take control of select
Ericsson patents related to handsets. Ericsson will then shift from the
mobility business to other areas, leaving Sony to compete on its own with the
likes of Samsung and HTC. In that battle, Sony has one particular advantage:
Thanks to its entertainment arm, the company can leverage whole libraries of
audio and video content to boost the appeal of its smartphones.
essence, that would make Sony more of an entity along the lines of Apple, which
takes great pains to control every aspect of its mobility experience, from
entertainment offerings to hardware.
this year's CEATEC conference in Tokyo, Sony demonstrated a variety of
handhelds targeted at the consumer market. In addition to a revival of the
iconic Walkman brand as a line of Android-powered multimedia players, the
company offered up two new Android tablets-the dual-screen Tablet P and the more
traditional, 9.4-inch Tablet S-that could appear soon on the American market.
Sony Ericsson has its line of Xperia smartphones, powered by Android, but Sony
might spin its mobility strategy into a line of wholly new devices under a
different brand name.
to Reuters, Sony Ericsson occupied around 2 percent of the global cell phone
market in 2010. Recent devices included the Xperia Active Android smartphone, a
compact and water-resistant phone designed for fitness, allowing users to
monitor their heart rate on a screen while working out.
its wide portfolio of devices and enviable brand recognition, Sony has wrestled
very publicly with some technology issues over the past year, most of them
related to a data breach that compromised tens of millions of PlayStation
Network accounts. The company is fighting tooth-and-nail with Microsoft for
gamers' hearts and wallets.
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