Posts Tagged Sony-Ericsson

Nov
15

iPhone losing market share in Japan

Posted by on Monday, 15 November, 2010

For someone working in the mobile phone industry (oh wait, that’s not the hip way to call it anymore – we’re in the Information Communication Technology industry) it seems I’ve not kept up with trends here in Japan lately. I was under the impression that Softbank, with their exclusive distribution deal with Apple, had the Smartphone market at its knees in a permanent submissive state. I thought that the iPhone 4 was the almighty ruler of the high end cellphone market in Japan ever since it’s launch earlier this year.

While reports like Android Sales Overtake iPhone in the US and …Android Revenue Eclipses iPhone have drifted before my eyes when browsing the tech writers throughout the Internet, I was thinking that here Japan, there were basically only three Smartphones available, and iPhone was the undoubted king of the hill.

Yes, indeed it was so, back when that above statement was true (iPhone, Blackberry & Xperia), but as you can see from Japanese mobile phone traffic data presented by Trend Research last week: already when Sony-Ericsson’s Xperia was launched by Docomo in the Spring, the iPhone’s dominance started to crumble. The text is all in Japanese I’m afraid, but I’ll give you a breakdown of what the graphs represent:

The first graph shows total Pageviews by operator (regardless of device) – Pink is NTT Docomo, yellow is au, and blue is Softbank. Docomo is the overall leader with au and Softbank fighting for second place.

The second graph shows pageviews by devices classified as smartphones. It’s interesting to note the data in April, June-July, and September of this year in particular. Q: What happened in April, that made Docomo gain that much on Softbank? A: Xperia launched. Q: What happened in June/July? A: iPhone 4 launched. Q: What about October? A: First Android phone from au (by Sharp) and Samsung Galaxy (by Docomo) were launched.

Now, the interesting part is looking at Softbank in this case. They have been losing quite a lot of their initial market share in this high end space. The iPhone has also been their only Smartphone and simply been an “Apple Distributor” for a long time, to put it bluntly. Looking at the latest product roadmap from Softbank gives a completely different, much more interesting, picture:

Softbank Smartphone Lineup (This is of course a dynamic page, so the text I write here describes the situation as of today, November 15)

Note that the iPhone is not even mentioned on the “Softbank Smartphone” lineup page. (It still has a very prominent position above all other phone types on the main product page, of course.) They now have six models (some are not launched yet, though) and all are Android! There are two Sharps, one HTC, one Dell (!) and then two which I haven’t identified the manufacturer of yet (mind you, I haven’t put so much effort into it).

au as a comparison also have six models out of which all except one is Android (last one in Windows).

Docomo have 11 models (including the Galaxy Tab from Samsung) where all but three are Android (I could be wrong here, their web page is not that clear).

All in all, what is my point? Well, it’s going to be an interesting Smartphone market here in Japan going forward – much more than I expected, as there is no one single dominant player right now. Although the elephant in the room is now Google, with an ever gaining share of the Smartphones’ OS here. Looking forward to follow how the market develops!

Jan
21

New cell phones from au

Posted by on Saturday, 21 January, 2006

Japanese cell phone operator au (KDDI) presented their “Spring Lineup” of new phones yesterday, and there are a few quite interesting models! The link goes to the au page presenting the seven new models – it’s in Japanese, but there’s some amazing Flash work done, and you can at least check out the pictures.

The phones released are:

W41SA from Sanyo, W41S from Sony-Ericsson, W41T from Toshiba, W41CA from Casio, W41K from Kyocera, W41H from Hitachi, and Neon. Neon is a quite interesting looking phone, designed by Naoto Fukasawa who is a designer from the Japanese design company PlusMinusZero.

New Sony Ericsson phone W41S

Being Swedish, I am of course interested in the newest S-E model, W41S, which looks darn nice, and has some good specs too. You can check the details of W41S here (in Japanese though). In short, it weighs 119g, has 250 hours standby, 240×320 TFT screen (24bit color), 40 MB memory (can be expanded via Memory Stick Duo to 2 GB), 1.3 Mpixel camera, stereo virtual surround speakers, support for mobile SUICA (use the cell phone to pay your train fare), can display non-mobile webpages, and has a wide range of functionality when it comes to downloading/transferring music back and forth between the phone and your pc.