It’s not a secret how Sony struggles to sell its mobile phones. Whilst many have regarded the Japanese tech giant for its innovations in the high-end market, it totally lost its grip on the thriving low-end segment. Sony smartphones are also often criticized (perhaps denigrated) for staying true to its own design heritage, as well as poor marketing campaigns.
Last week, rumors of the company shutting down operations in the Middle East, Turkey, and Africa emerged online. Sony later confirmed the rumor saying that it has been investigating the possibility of downsizing its operations in the said regions.
“As part of our ongoing measures to drive profitable growth, we are carefully monitoring the market situation and reviewing our business feasibility in Middle East, Africa and Turkey,” the company told Android Authority.
It is also not helping that Chinese smartphone manufacturers are enjoying a massive growth in the aforementioned regions. Latest data by Counterpoint Research reveals that Chinese manufacturers saw 36 percent annual growth in the Middle East and Africa for Q1 2018 versus 15 percent of last year.
Now to remind you of its worth, Sony Mobile has released a cool infographic featuring its mobile innovations.
First off, the Sony Xperia Z. It was the first true water and dust resistant proof smartphone, earning an IP55 and IP57 certification. At the time, 2013 by the way, it had the highest level of water resistance. It allows it to survive submersion up to 1 meter for 30 minutes.
In the following year, Sony’s Android SmartWatch 3 became the first wearable with onboard GPS sensor.
In 2015, when 4K TVs starts becoming a thing, Sony unveiled the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium. Suitably for its name, the smartphone features a premium 5.5–inch display, with a whopping 4K (2160p) resolution. It also had an insane PPI (~806), leaving a single wallop on Apple’s retina display. No one gets the point of it though.
And yes, the Z5 Premium records video in 4K UHD.
Two years later, the Sony Xperia XZ Premium came out. Now delivering a beautiful 4K HDR display, Gigabit-class download speed (thanks to Snapdragon 835), and 720p 960fps super slow-motion video capture. All of which are first on smartphones.
Later in the same year, comes the Sony Xperia XZ1, improving from its predecessor. It almost retains the prior’s entire spec sheet but adding a real-time 3D capture. It’s notable for the fact that all the high-resolution 3D scanning is done via a single camera. The output could later be used for 3D prints and digital avatars. It’s gimmicky (and undeniably impressive) if you ask me.
And to the more recent stuff, the Sony Xperia XZ2 is the first ever smartphone to deliver 4K HDR video capture in 10-bit color depth. It uses BT.2020 (Rec.2020) color gamut and hybrid log gamma (HLG) HDR standard to store and reproduce video with a monstrous 1 billion colors. Current smartphones with 10-bit color sensors save and compress the video down to 8-bit color depth (16.7 million colors). To make it simpler, the XZ2 Premium captures video in punchier color.
Just to add up, the Xperia XZ2 is also the first (and the only smartphone) that can capture Full HD (1080p) video in 960fps. That is versus the 720p 960fps video capture on the Xperia XZ Premium, XZ1, Galaxy S9/+ and Huawei P20 Pro. It is also the first, and again, the only smartphone that features 5-axis image stabilization for video. Not to mention the ISO 51200 sensitivity for low-light capture. I don’t know why it didn’t bother to add those up, but there you have it. You owe me with this one Sony.