Sony Tries To Save Its Phone Business With New Advanced 4K Filming Screens
Stephan Jukic – February 26, 2019
Sony may be a leader when it comes to 4K ultra HD cameras and 4K UHD TVs but where this giant Japanese brand dropped the ball badly is in the smartphone market, in which rivals LG and Samsung handily beat anything it’s released.
Now, the company is trying to remedy this situation through a unique new solution that cinematography fans among others might like a lot: As recently revealed at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona Spain, Sony is releasing the new flagship Xperia 1 premium phone with an HDR OLED screen that has been optimized for taking photos and recording 4K video in a cinematic 21:9 aspect ratio. To help this along, the new phone uses the same sort of Bravia TV technology for ultra HD HDR video rendering that’s found in Sony’s generally excellent 4K HDR TVs.
According to Mitsuya Kishida, president of Sony Mobile Communications, Sony’s “rich heritage” of meeting the technical demands of pro filmmakers in both sound and video quality is helping the company deliver quality results in this highly compact device and technology combination.
According to further comments by Kishida at MWC,
“Our new Xperia will deliver genuine technologies with a multitude of professional grade features to create entertainment experiences that are only possible with Sony,”
Sony has also included the unique new 21:9 aspect ratio in its cheaper, mid-range Xperia 10 and Xperia 10 Plus smart phones.
On the other hand, critics have already chimed in with their own views and according to one, it’s hard to see how the new phones will stand out from the crowd despite their nice design and new aspect ratio (as well as their internal video processing technologies). In the words of one analyst from CCS Insight, “We are unconvinced that the new 21:9 aspect ratio is differentiated enough despite Sony’s strong credentials in content”.
Another industry watcher, Paolo Pescatore, from PP Foresight, has also claimed that it’s hard to see this feature, specialized as it is, competing effectively with phones from rival that are being released at great prices and their own rich sets of video and photo features.
On this front, it’s not just Samsung and LG that Sony need worry about. Asian smart phone makers from China, such as Huawei and Xiaomi are also stealthily eating up market share with some genuinely innovative new phones at very reasonable prices. Some of these two companies’ recent announcements include new 5G devices and from Huawei even a foldable phone similar to Samsung’s recently released Galaxy Fold. Huawei in particular has gained serious share of the phone market to the point where it is now competing with Samsung for second place in worldwide phone sales, after Apple, which still holds top spot.
Sony for its part has taken previous major creative leaps in phone design with the release of the first ever previous flagship phones with displays that delivered native ultra HD resolution, though neither of these saved the company from continuing to lose in the smart phone market war.