Not only had Sony Ericsson recorded a 42% sales plunge back in October, but yesterday their latest smart phone, the Satio, was taken off the shelves of Carphone Warehouse and Phones4u stores across the UK.
Citing software issues, the street retailers suspended sales of the devices until further notice adding to Sony Ericsson’s woes.
This is major setback for them from a reputation point of view. Not only are the world’s consumers as fickle and cautious as they’ve ever been whilst being in the current climate, but Sony Ericsson have just given them another reason to avoid their products.
They also sold 45% less phones from July to September than the previous quarter.
According to the BBC, a Sony Ericsson spokesman said it was “giving this matter its utmost priority and working toward solving it”. There really shouldn’t have been an issue in the first place, if there’s ever been a clearer time to adopt a different operating system, it’s when your evidently struggling to produce one good enough and reliable yourself.
With Sony’s hardware expertise, the handsets themselves have never been a problem and have produced some great phones since they joined forces with Ericsson in 2001.
Their first Android phone, the Xperia X10 (above) is due in early 2010 and could potentially be the turning of fortunes for the company.
Phone manufacturers are growing in confidence in the platform, with Google behind it and a solid and increasingly functional interface and features.
It’s a great long term bet too with customers becoming more and more familiar with the system in a similar way to those that have adopted to Apple’s iPhone over the last 2.5 years.
The iPhone has subsequently taken a 50% market share of all smart phone data traffic with Android growing swiftly behind by growing to 11% in the two months prior to October. The graph (left) from AdMob, the mobile advertising platform recently purchased by Google, portrays the aforementioned confidence manufacturers are placing in Android.
Sony Ericsson’s adoption of the OS could prove crucial in turning around their flailing handset sales, as their clearly not faring too well at current. The PR bombshell that hit yesterday will not help them one bit especially with the lucrative festive trading period approaching fast.
A bad year all in all for them in 2009, though 2010 with a well spec’d and nice looking new smart phone running an increasingly popular operating system could well change their fortunes.