Sony Ericsson eyes Android market with new phones

Jun 22, 2011 By ALEX KENNEDY , Associated Press
A staff member of Sony Ericsson submerges the newly-launched Xperia Active phone into a bowl of water as it receives an incoming call to show off its underwater capability on Wednesday, June 22, 2011 in Singapore. Mobile phone maker Sony Ericsson has unveiled two new Android models in a bid to grab more of the burgeoning smartphone market. Chief Marketing Officer Matthew Lang announced Wednesday in Singapore that the company plans to launch the Xperia ray and Xperia active models during the third quarter.(AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

(AP) -- Mobile phone maker Sony Ericsson unveiled two new Android models Wednesday in a bid to grab more of the burgeoning smartphone market.

The company, a joint venture between L.M. Ericsson and ., plans to launch the Xperia ray and Xperia active models during the third quarter, Chief Marketing Officer Steve Walker announced in Singapore.

The new models should help the company expand its 11 percent market share of the Android segment, Walker said.

"Android smartphones is a rapidly growing part of the market, and we see our share within that market growing," Walker told The Associated Press.

London-based Sony Ericsson, which saw its phone unit sales drop 23 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier, is moving away from cheaper phone models and seeking to take on Apple Inc.'s , Research in Motion's Blackberry and .'s N9 in the higher-priced smartphone market.

By 2015, about 60 percent of mobile phones sold in the will likely be smartphones, up from 20 percent in 2010, Walker said.

"We made quite a fundamental shift in strategy and decided to focus a large part of our efforts into smartphones, to focus on the mid- and high-end part of the business," Walker said. "In many markets, we see a dramatic shift from feature phones to smartphones."

The company said in April that smartphones accounted for more than 60 percent of its sales during the first quarter.

Sony Ericsson's latest models that run on Goggle Inc.'s Android platform, the Xperia ray and active, will likely be priced below the high-end Xperia arc, Walker said.

Xperia active is water resistant and works if fingers are wet or sweaty, while the Xperia ray seeks to combine a sleek design with a device that is 9.4 millimeters thick (about 1/3 inch-thick).

also plans to introduce a less expensive model that highlights texting service and is aimed at teenagers, Walker said.

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rexalfielee
5 / 5 (1) Jun 24, 2011
Good for SonyEricsson, bad for Nokia. Although there will probably be a good size desire for Nokia's N9 Meego, they shot themselves in the foot rather than competing with a market that they already had arguably a good reputation in. That they went with Windows Phone 7 was probably to get into the American market which they had little access to but their overall marketing worked everywhere else. Few want Windows Phone 7, including business. This was just a truly bad decision on Nokia's behalf. I do hope Meego does take off though...