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Author Sony Xperia Sentiment 2016
Ricky D
Sony Xperia Z3
Joined: Feb 05, 2007
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From: UK (living in Beijing)
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Posted: 2016-02-10 12:32
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To keep things organised and readable over in the rumours thread.

For discussion of Sony failings (and winnings) in:
Marketing
Strategy
Hardware
Design
Software

Including comparative narrative against competitor models and manufacturers.
[ This Message was edited by: Ricky D on 2016-02-11 07:51 ]
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goldenface
Sony Xperia Z3 Compact
Joined: Dec 17, 2003
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From: Liverpool City Centre
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Posted: 2016-02-10 15:17
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Good idea Ricky.

I know Sony Mobile can never match the marketing budgets of the major players but if they can downsize and choose their battles carefully then they can carry on happily.
Supa_Fly
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Joined: Apr 16, 2002
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From: Toronto, Ontario
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Posted: 2016-02-10 16:11
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Marketing:
I really think, economies of scale for cheaper budgets, all Sony offices need to work together on the right language and prose with terms of a Global Marketing strategy!

1. Work with providers, offering unadulterated Firmware Support - work with providers to tweak phone performance, not just before but after initial launch (Voice, Data, device feature performance)! Also work with them for marketing efforts and present ALL major providers in EACH country your mobile solutions! Only offer colour variants and specific packaging and no more than 30 day exclusitivity - doing so ONLY if markting $$ is willing to be spent by the provider, featuring product front and center in all forms of advertisement for that exclusitivity!

2. Global marketing effort should show the COMPLETE solution not just a product with features!
PlayStation and TV and home audio are BIG wins for Sony and pushing profits! It's time Sony capitalized on this in a BIG way! Feature PlayStation ads using Xperia Z5/Z6 devices and how RemotePlay is worth it! Show TV remote access along with featuring Sony's BIG sound quality and home audio/TV audio systems to really push the ideal solution!

(Apple is doing this, Samsung has YET to get this, if they do it's over)

Strategy:
read above plan, execute review, repeat!

Hardware:
Better IP Water/Dust Resistance performance! Don't state Waterproof/Dust-proof without standing behind your products with FULL WARRANTY CLAIMs to be HONORED!! No more excuses ... advertising this and screwing your users over KILLS the BRAND and VERY Soon after your revenues and profits! Get this threw your thick skulls Sony!

Design: Must work in harmony with hardware and price points. People want a quality premium brand with impeccable Japanese bold/futuristic design! Xperia X5 is a pinnacle but the basic design is getting old, not much more to refine on. Give us something new something just as spectacular yet better. Design like the Japanese, marketing and stategerize NOT like Japanese.

Software: Fluid and fast ... it's all about efficiency!
Consider the Xperia line for the executive and business professional as well. Team up with Microsoft to imbedd (launch only upon desired needs with API's for Android shareing upon system bootup) their MS Office Suite of applications. Allow these to be deleted by the end user that does NOT want these.

The current business software stack is JUST to READ: this means nothing really as a large populace needs to edit what document type they need to read. Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook are business staples across the global stage.
|AppleTV2|iPhone7 256GB|MBA 256GB| Previously ... K750|Z500|Z520|K700|K790i|K850i, :Ericsson: T18z|T28World|T36m x3|T68m (Ericsson, not the rebranded T68i).
blackzeros
Model not set
Joined: Jul 21, 2015
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Posted: 2016-02-10 22:34
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https://twitter.com/Ricciolo1/status/697428437749862400
facepalm...
amirprog
W800
Joined: Aug 22, 2013
Posts: > 500
From: Israel
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Posted: 2016-02-11 20:00
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How can sonymobile radically improve their xperia z line:
Change your spirit - strive for perfection, truly competitive mind, perfectionism, backup your buzz words. Good enough is bad in the mobile industry. If you can't truly compete in the long run then don't even try to compete in the high end.
In terms of the actual devices:
Display - adopt the desired oled displays if possible - it is a shame that companies like jdi lag far behind samsung in this regard. 1080p for compact, QHD "always on" for main and premium. Make the color temperature close to 65k, warmer then current displays, quality to resembles the years of sony work in the display business. Size options - 4.7", 5.2", 5.7". These sizes have the best mobility, popularity and differentiation ratio. Have the latest and greatest display glass material.
Audio - Add the highest quality stereo speakers that resembles the years of sony work in the audio business and decrease the ip rating if required - no prob here for water phobics as the phone will stay water proof/resistant.
Design - A new design - Japan style, Full cold metal construction. Move the volume keys from their current awkward position - read fingerprint scanner part for more details.
Fingerprint scanner - move it to the middle of the front display and the power button and volume keys to their previous position or move the volume keys to the top left frame side until the former is technically possible.
Camera - Hire the most talented programmers for image processing and HEAVILY invest in it to produce the best quality possible in photos and videos and especially in low light to resemble the praised sony camera sensors and to truly compete with the best. Add the most advanced ois in mobile.
Memory - never get cheap on it.
Playstation - Make the xperia z line a part of playstation ecosystem.
Software - keep aiming for a stock like android and add 2 windows mode already.
Heavily invest QA and QC work.
Other features:
Add usb type c, dual tone flash.
Advertise which front glass is used for the device - sony, what is the secrecy all about???
[ This Message was edited by: amirprog on 2016-02-11 20:12 ]
Supa_Fly
K750
Joined: Apr 16, 2002
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From: Toronto, Ontario
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Posted: 2016-02-12 00:09
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On 2016-02-10 22:34:31, blackzeros wrote:
https://twitter.com/Ricciolo1/status/697428437749862400
facepalm...


^ This is what weak-willed fools do when their minds draw a blank to positive or any kind of criticism too intelligent beyond their feeble thoughts
Care to actually contribute something to the conversation more intelligently? Post a screenshot - not everyone is using full internet on their phones, most of us work in a corporation.
|AppleTV2|iPhone7 256GB|MBA 256GB| Previously ... K750|Z500|Z520|K700|K790i|K850i, :Ericsson: T18z|T28World|T36m x3|T68m (Ericsson, not the rebranded T68i).
badassmam
Sony Xperia Z1
Joined: Nov 07, 2007
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Posted: 2016-02-12 12:17
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@amirprog
What you have described is all valid and would be very expensive, most of which Sony probably do anyway if you look at other departments like camera, PlayStation and music. The truth is that other departments like PlayStation are going to use that philosophy and level of quality because they are highly profitable at the moment. Mobile has become a low level thing for Sony, even if they produced your dream phone that is miles ahead of every other phone it doesn't guarantee sales. Its bragging rights only and while you could say the S6 Edge was the device of the year, sales were lower than what was expected. Given a big budget, Sony could easily take the best from each of their top departments and make this dream phone but I don't see them benefiting that much from it. It would have to be a sustained and long term, consistent strategy which probably would cost loads and not yield the return. Samsung knows this which is why the Note 5 was only a limited release and it looks like the Galaxy range will shrink a little this year too. Looking at Sony, I'd just pump cash into PlayStation and Movies, those two are guaranteed money makers and will forever be like that. It is what it is, Mobile is not a priority anymore.
amirprog
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Joined: Aug 22, 2013
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From: Israel
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Posted: 2016-02-12 16:36
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@badassmam
I agree with what you wrote with some objections, maybe you misunderstood. Notice i wrote: "If you can't truly compete in the long run then don't even try to compete in the high end."
Success does not come in one year or with one device, it is what i wrote above that does. Notice i did not only wrote about spec but also spirit. Sonymobile exists since 2012. We are now in 2016 (!) so we are not talking about one device or two devices but several devices. I'm not talking about a dream phone at all. Nothing in the points i mentioned is far fetched, the contrary. This is about doing things right and becoming the most competitive over the long run when the devices themselves are concerned and sony clearly failed in that until now. At the end of the day their devices are not truly competitive when the end result is concerned AND they don't make the sales they need to make. So why do they even bother to continue? Maybe it is some kind of a japanese pride? to slowly die like a warrior or something?
If like you wrote they don't have what it takes to be a truly major competitive player in mobile then they need to stop to compete in the high end segment as soon as possible or else they are just wasting their time and money just for pride.
There is a very good article about sony mobile current state at mobile-review (russian). If i'll find it i'll post it here.
Ricky D
Sony Xperia Z3
Joined: Feb 05, 2007
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From: UK (living in Beijing)
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Posted: 2016-02-16 14:01
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To bring over from the rumours thread, I don't understand why all the fuss that the Z line design hasn't changed.

If you hole the entire Z line side by side in your hand you'd see the design has actually changed a fair amount over that time.

The Z to Z1/Z2, saw an uncovered headphone jack, rounder edges so it was less sharp/cutting in the hand, metal surround and removal of the top, bottom and side panel plastic strips. All in all a good touch up.

The Z3/Z3+/Z4 was an even bigger jump in design with the fully rounded surround, nylon drop protection corner inserts, white front glass for white version, no factory fitted shatter protection sheet.

Z5 has frosted finish glass (really classy if you've not held it in hand yourself), flatter edges, move the speakers to flush against the frame, open USB, new power button and slightly lipped frame for protecting against slippage on the super smooth front and back.

Things that haven't changed in these iteratons:

  • The corner radius of the footprint (Apple haven't changed theirs since 2007, Samsung haven't, HTC have had the same footprint shape for years too, it's a subtle part of brand identity)
  • The position of the buttons hasn't changed much (why change what is working well?)
  • Flaps for sim/SD slots (instead of a pin release tray? Any day)
  • Fixed battery (quite important for more reliable waterproofing)


What else do people want? Curved glass? Doesn't really fit in the rest of the Sony family, the TVs and PS4 are sharp cut straight edges, curves have no place. They could go with the full metal jacket approach but this requires an ugly antenna line somewhere across the back, I rather think they are trying to avoid this.
I have a dig bick
You read that wrong
goldenface
Sony Xperia Z3 Compact
Joined: Dec 17, 2003
Posts: > 500
From: Liverpool City Centre
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Posted: 2016-02-16 14:50
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Mmm, I don't know. It always surprised me how Sony Ericsson was able to come up with some many different designs for, what was essentially, a glass fronted block.

The Arc, Ray, X10 and Play all had very distinct designs.. The current design language, although distinctly Sony Mobile's style, can only allow quite incremental design changes. I think if they were to give us a whole new design it would be almost shocking, but knowing Sony, design is one thing they almost always seem to get right.
amirprog
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Joined: Aug 22, 2013
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From: Israel
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Posted: 2016-02-16 19:20
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@Ricky D
People want two main things to change in regard to design:
1. From glass to metal - New material and won't crack/shatter like glass.
2. Smaller top and bottom bezel resulting in bigger screen to body ratio - makes the front more seamless and less bulky due to the more rectangle xperia design.
3. Some would like a less rectangle design.
4. Z5 line volume key is a con - relocate it. Read my first post for more info.

Xperia z line design is still good but not the uniquely premium one on the block as it used to be in the past. Now even cheap mid range Chinese phones have a premium design, all the rivals addressed criticism and made their own premium design and the curved displays make the latest buzz. Sonymobile has a tough competition even when it comes to design. One thing i will add, they should omit from joining the curved display fashion because it is actually a con:
1. The curved parts reflects light back and degrade from the viewing experience.
2. Makes it impossible to install a tempered glass.
3. Does not bring truly better user experience - gimmicky.
4. More expensive to repair.
Tsepz_GP
Apple iPhone 6 Plus
Joined: Dec 27, 2006
Posts: > 500
From: Johannesburg, South Africa
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Posted: 2016-02-16 20:43
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On 2016-02-16 14:01:28, Ricky D wrote:
To bring over from the rumours thread, I don't understand why all the fuss that the Z line design hasn't changed.

If you hole the entire Z line side by side in your hand you'd see the design has actually changed a fair amount over that time.

The Z to Z1/Z2, saw an uncovered headphone jack, rounder edges so it was less sharp/cutting in the hand, metal surround and removal of the top, bottom and side panel plastic strips. All in all a good touch up.

The Z3/Z3+/Z4 was an even bigger jump in design with the fully rounded surround, nylon drop protection corner inserts, white front glass for white version, no factory fitted shatter protection sheet.

Z5 has frosted finish glass (really classy if you've not held it in hand yourself), flatter edges, move the speakers to flush against the frame, open USB, new power button and slightly lipped frame for protecting against slippage on the super smooth front and back.

Things that haven't changed in these iteratons:

  • The corner radius of the footprint (Apple haven't changed theirs since 2007, Samsung haven't, HTC have had the same footprint shape for years too, it's a subtle part of brand identity)
  • The position of the buttons hasn't changed much (why change what is working well?)
  • Flaps for sim/SD slots (instead of a pin release tray? Any day)
  • Fixed battery (quite important for more reliable waterproofing)


What else do people want? Curved glass? Doesn't really fit in the rest of the Sony family, the TVs and PS4 are sharp cut straight edges, curves have no place. They could go with the full metal jacket approach but this requires an ugly antenna line somewhere across the back, I rather think they are trying to avoid this.



Let's get real here for a second mate, what average user is going to go into a phone shop and say "Hmmm I see that the edges are rounder, the jack is now uncovered, oh and nylon drop protection corner inserts"? When the Sony is sitting next to a Samsung with a curved SuperAMOLED display with incredibly vivid colors on one side, and then a Rose Gold iPhone on the other side?

Sony's Z series design is nice, but they have been using it for far too long and now it looks dull in a phone shop, you have to be a Sony enthusiast to truly notice it. Even I get confused and I tend to see detail, but I have often confused the Z2, Z3 and Z3+.

Sony need to differentiate and stick out.
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Xajel
Sony Xperia S
Joined: Jun 18, 2004
Posts: > 500
From: Bahrain
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Posted: 2016-02-17 07:51
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On 2016-02-16 14:01:28, Ricky D wrote:
To bring over from the rumours thread, I don't understand why all the fuss that the Z line design hasn't changed.

If you hole the entire Z line side by side in your hand you'd see the design has actually changed a fair amount over that time.


There's nothing wrong with what you said, we all agree that Z design has evolved with each gen. and it's mature now... but every manufacturer is doing this already, the only different is that they do it for 3-4 devices only in most cases.. and because other manufacturers 3 devices will last 3 years ( or 4 devices in 4 years )... Sony in these 3 years had 6 devices ( not to mention the different sizes and tablets also sharing the same design )... and if they stayed in the same beat for 4 years.. we will have 8 generations with the same design.. only few updates...

Peoples are expecting a new design every 3-4 devices max or they will be bored, in these 3-4 devices all expect the design to evolve, every major maker do this.. but after these 3-4 devices they expect completely refreshed design.. not doing so will make people thing that these phones did not changed at all, just upgraded every time..

if you look into most reviews for Xperia devices, you will see a common description in all ( this is a good/fair upgrade to the last flagship )... and some might also say ( If you already have the last flagship, there's no point in upgrade )

So the time for a new design already passed for Sony ( as they have now the 6th gen. ).. and the 6months cycle is just too fast.. even Apple did the Xs series to slow down the generation jump and allows them to work more on new features and design because people think the Xs phones are not complete new, these are just half upgrades..
I see a lot of iPhones users choose either the X or Xs as their preferred upgrade plan, so they only upgrade for 4 -> 5 -> 6, or choose 4s -> 5s -> 6s
Ricky D
Sony Xperia Z3
Joined: Feb 05, 2007
Posts: > 500
From: UK (living in Beijing)
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Posted: 2016-02-17 14:23
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I wasn't saying the designs have vastly changed, merely pointing out that the design hasn't been as static as some say.

Neither am I saying that the design changes are enough to completely stand out every iteration and be a leading sales point on a shop display, only that to say the design has 'been the same' for a long period isn't entirely correct.

Sure Sony has made mistakes in nomenclature and release periods (the Z4/Z3+ naming idea was terrible), but they have been releasing twice as many flagships per year as the other leading manufacturers and it seems they are ready to put the 6 month cycle and naming scheme to the sword.
I have a dig bick
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goldenface
Sony Xperia Z3 Compact
Joined: Dec 17, 2003
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From: Liverpool City Centre
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Posted: 2017-01-24 21:15
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It's hard to refine what is essentially a thin black slab. They done a good job of refining the Z3 compact, that is a very nice design and doesn't seem to have dated much at all.

I would like to see Sony move away from the 'black slab' and, even if it's for just one model, give us a different take on smartphone design.
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