There are plenty of smartphone brands across the globe that do well in their own turf, such as Samsung in South Korea, but key markets all over the world, such as China and India have become important battlegrounds for these global giants. Where India is concerned, Samsung is of course one name that is well known and respected, as is is Japanese firm Sony, with the latter having struggled there lately. The Indian market can be a confusing one, with budget devices usually the way to go in order to sell lots of units, but Samsung's devices have rarely been competitive on price, and yet they control the majority of the market there. Sony meanwhile, has struggled to gain ground with their budget devices, and just as they have done in the West, it looks like Sony is to shift its focus to more expensive, premium devices in India.
Last week, we got a look at Sony's figures for Q2 2016, and for the first in a long while, their mobile division actually made money. While this was perhaps down to the positive impact of the Yen against international currencies, it was also down to a change in the way that Sony does business, with the Japanese firm relying more on the sale of premium devices than lots of different budget models. Vijay Singh Jaswal of Sony India told the Times of India that "Going forward we [Sony] aim to launch flagship products for our customers in India which will further enhance our presence in the market". This description of "flagship products" seems all but confirmed as premium, higher-end devices. This move is likely to go hand-in-hand with earlier reports of a "defocus" on India from Sony. Launching less, yet higher-priced devices could lead to a more laid back approach to sales in India, and therefore keep their brand alive and well in India, but reduce the amount of work that Sony needs to do in order to make a profit on each device sold.
While Sony remains a force to be reckoned with in parts of Europe and Asia, India has long been an important market for them, albeit one they've yet to take completely by storm. A shift to producing and selling higher-cost devices could lead to larger profits in the region, but also the risk of diminishing brand presence.