Sony is reported to be putting a little more focus on its budget handset offerings this year as Digitimes states the Japanese electronics company will be using MediaTek processors in more upcoming handsets to be announced in 2015. The most recently announced handset for Sony was the Xperia E4 which was just announced days ago, and is now available for pre-order in the U.K for a fairly low price of £99.99, which is about $153 USD. The Xperia E4 is sporting a MediaTek CPU, and Sony is expected to sell an estimated 3 million of those handsets according to Digitimes source, which may suggest that Sony is looking to opt for the less expensive MediaTek processors in future offerings low-end to mid-range offerings.
The news comes from Sony's Taiwan based supply division which mentioned that Sony will be looking to up the amount of low-end and mid-range smartphones it releases this year, and with MediaTek being one of the leading brands for low cost mobile CPU offerings compared to larger brands like Qualcomm(which are usually in Sony's high-end handsets like the Xperia Z3)it would make sense for Sony to look at producing future devices with MediaTek CPUs inside, as they can pick up MediaTek CPUs for a fraction of the cost of Qualcomm CPUs which would allow them to lower the cost of their low-end devices. Although nothing is confirmed as of yet, Sony is also expected to include MediaTek's processor in upcoming 4G handsets that it could be planning on launching this year as well.
Sony is not a brand that is very prominent in the U.S, although that could be changing, so we don't normally see them as a manufacturer of many budget minded smartphones or other mobile devices. They're mostly well known for their premium line of Xperia devices. The Xperia E4 looks to possibly change things coming in at such a low cost while harboring specifications like the 1.3GHz quad-core processor, 1GB of RAM and 8GB of internal storage space, alongside the 5-inch qHD IPS display and the 5MP rear facing camera. It also sports Android 5.0 Lollipop which is the latest version of Android software to date, putting up there to compete against other low cost offerings like the Motorola Mot G and Moto E, as well as other lesser known brands.