Sony revitalises smartphone franchise with movie-style screens

Japan’s Sony, which has fallen way behind its South Korean and Chinese rivals in the smartphone sales race, aims to capitalize on its movie pedigree with new devices featuring 21:9 ratio screens, the dimensions used to film blockbusters. The company announced a new flagship Xperia 1 handset at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona last week, which has an HDR OLED screen, optimized using Sony’s Bravia TV technology. It also has the ability to take photos and record 4K video in a 21:9 ratio. Mitsuya Kishida, president of Sony Mobile Communications, said Sony had a rich heritage of meeting the technological demands of professional film-makers in both sound and vision.

“Our new Xperia will deliver genuine technologies with a multitude of professional grade features to create entertainment experiences that are only possible with Sony,” Kishida said at the Congress. The company has also brought the 21:9 screen ration to two mid-range smartphones: the Xperia 10 and Xperia 10 plus. Ben Wood from CCS Insight said the handsets were nicely designed but it was hard to see how they would stand out from the crowd. “We are unconvinced that the 21:9 ratio is differentiated enough despite Sony’s strong credentials in content,” he said. — Reuters