Sony is making all kinds of changes in various parts of their company, from revamping their video services and re-branding them under the Playstation name, to reportedly scaling back on the 6 month release cycle of their flagship Xperia smartphones to one major flagship per year. They also let go of about 1,000 employees from the mobile division last month in January, and as of today they’re announcing that they’ll unfortunately be letting go of another 1,100 employees from the same division. Sony has been having a tough time with their mobile sales as of late and this is a step they’re taking to recuperate what they can in an attempt to perhaps breathe new life into Sony Mobile. There have also been rumors about Sony possibly selling off the mobile division at some point, although we hope that doesn’t happen.
Sony had talked about cutting jobs when they announced their Q4 earnings report, which stated they would be looking to scale back on employees from the mobile division to only 5,000 people by sometime next year. Sony CEO Kaz Hirai stated this would be an instrumental move to their electronics division, so more job cuts aren’t completely a surprise. Especially if Sony hopes to keep the mobile division afloat without having to sell it off, although they had mentioned that selling it is a scenario they may have to at one point explore as they realize “no business lasts forever.”
It isn’t all bad news for Sony though as they had recently posted double their operating profits for the third fiscal quarter to about $1.52 billion. As a result of this sales rose for the company by about 6 percent, and specifically in the mobile division sales rose by about 29% year-over-year. Despite this Sony is still expecting to post a loss of about $1.82 billion for the entire fiscal year which ends in March, so cutting jobs to save money and keep things going is an unfortunate but necessary thing. Perhaps the takeaway is that Sony saw an increase in their smartphone sales to 11.9 million units from a little over a million less than that just a year ago, which paints a hopeful picture for Sony Mobile going forward, provided they can keep their smartphone sales increasing.