As if Sony couldn't dwindle its U.S. user base any more

Anna Scantlin
Contributing Editor from  Kansas City, MO
| April 26, 2014


Sony is one of the most recognizable names in the tech industry as a whole. They’ve been famous for mobile radios (Walkman), game consoles (PlayStation), laptops (Vaio), and a whole lot more. Sony’s also no stranger to making some unique cell phones, ranging back from the Sony Ericsson T68i in 2002 all the way to, well, now. This year we were fortunate to see Sony’s latest smartphone creation, the Sony Xperia Z2, during Mobile World Congress back in late February. Unfortunately, outlook didn’t look good for a U.S. release given that Sony hasn’t exactly done well here stateside.


As it turns out, however, the Z2 will be making appearance in the United States. The follow-up to the Xperia Z1 is said to be available during the summer.


It’s good news and bad news at the same time. Sony apparently has no interest in the U.S. market because they’re not making enough money here. They’re not making enough money here because they wait a long time before they release a phone. Not only that, but they also released the Z1 with one carrier last year, and that was T-Mobile. With such a vague “summer release” statement, the Z2 will make its debut here anywhere between 4 and 6 months after it was officially announced.


I have some pity for Sony, because looking at the Z2 it could easily compete with other flagships already on the market. The Sony Xperia Z2 features a 5.2-inch 1080x1920 display, uses a quad-core 2.3GHz Snapdragon 801 processor, 3GB of RAM, 16GB of internal memory with support of 128GB microSD card, a 20.7-megapixel rear-facing camera and a 2.2-megapixel front-facing camera. It’s a pretty big phone, but honestly, so is almost every other flagship on the market. In the end, the Z2 is a perfect candidate to compete against the Samsung Galaxy S5, the HTC One (M8), and pretty much every other flagship that’s already been shown off this year.


But the longer Sony waits to release the phone, the smaller its consumer base will be.


Time is of the essence when it comes to the Z2 (or any phone, for that matter). Hopefully Sony has its sights set on a June release, because if they wait until August rolls around, people are already going to be waiting for that second wave of popular devices to be announced. Samsung’s Galaxy Note, Apple’s iPhone, and Google’s Nexus are all expected to be released sometime around September or November.


And, as odd as it may sound, even the Sony Xperia Z3 is supposed to be announced somewhere around that time as well, so that’s kind of weird.


I don’t see the Z2 becoming that popular here - and it wasn’t meant to be. I get that the U.S. isn’t its target market right now, but I do feel like they’re missing out on a good opportunity to fix that. We’ve seen how popular HTC got just in the fact that the M8 was able to be purchased on the same day it was announced - that’s a good start. The most popular flagships also don’t follow carrier exclusives anymore, so if Sony could somehow manage to ditch that stigma then that could help as well.


Sony is a big company with a lot of potential. They’re making good smartphones, and I, for one, think it would be great to have another competitor on the market. I think Sony has a place here with their Xperia phones, but they’re going to have to push harder than a release that ends up lapsing with the next generation of their same device.


Readers, what are your thoughts on the Xperia Z2 release stateside? Are you going to hold out for it, or will you be waiting for the next wave of smartphones to be announced in the fall? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!


Images via The Verge, Sony