Sony Ericsson became Sony Mobile Communication, which albeit a longer rendition of the same division, now sounds more like the brand that most of us have grown up with. The wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony only very recently launched their latest editions to their popular Xperia range in India (minus the Ericsson branding of course). Their flagship model, the Xperia S has of course taken centre stage.
Feature phones to go..
For a while now, we’ve noticed that the company seems to be focusing whole heartedly on their smartphone line up and the GreenHeart and lower budget feature phones have taken a back seat. According to the latest reports the Japanese electronics giant is planning on phasing out their feature phone range completely come September of this year.
The last set of real feature phones that didn’t classify as smartphones were the Sony Ericsson TxtPro and the Txt. One featured a slide out QWERTY keypad and touchscreen while the second was a BlackBerry styled QWERTY device. The TxtPro, featured Sony’s Four Corner UI that’s running over their current lower end Android models giving it a similar feel to a smartphone. Both devices came with a Time-Scape like application for social networking, contacts integration etc. But as smartphones went, they were a long way off.
Production on devices like the Yendo, Cedar, Zylo, Spiro etc. will also cease and all that will remain will be Android powered smartphones unless Sony decides it’s time to join forces with Microsoft as well. It is still possible that we could see some of the smartphones taking on ‘Greener tones’ and perhaps the revival of the GreenHeart series could be in the wind. However there is no word whatsoever on that front. The Aspen was the only GreenHeart running on a Windows Mobile OS that featured a full touchscreen and QWERTY keypad and was categorised as a smartphone.
According to the report, P. Balaji Sony Mobile’s Managing Director said that were interested in tapping that segment of the mobile market that would assure better returns, i.e. the smartphone sector. He also mentioned that although the decision to phase out the feature phones was taking a long time ago, it was only now that it was actually in motion.