It was earlier speculated that Sony's next-generation flagship device would be unveiled at this year's CES tech show and the then concluded Mobile World Congress 2015, but it didn't happen. Now it's being reported that Sony is expected to launch the device in the second half of 2015.
A high-profile executive over at Sony electronics has acknowledged the existence of the Z4 flagship device for the first time. It wouldn't stick to a 12-month cycle or release every six months but would come up with a device when they have something exceptionally great to offer.
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"Z4 is the next-generation of product that we'll be announcing. No, we haven't [moved to a more traditional 12 month product cycle]. As a general rule you will see some adjustment to the way we phase our products, but we're certainly not going to offer any specific details as to when we are going to bring our next products, beyond these, at this stage," Tim Harrison, Sony's Vice President of Global Communications and PR, was quoted as saying by TrustedReviews.
"At IFA we announced three Z3 series products, the full sized smartphone, the Compact and the Compact Tablet. These are doing really well in the market and there is still quite a considerable amount of interest in those particular products and since we've announced them, we've updated a number of features. We've introduced Remote Play, there are more camera themes and there are more camera apps," he further added.
This has further clarified that Sony wants to remain in the handset business. The company is not shying away from competition, as many claimed in the past.
Just recently, the head of Sony Mobile told French daily newspaper Le Figaro that the division is not being sold, only two weeks after Sony's CEO Kazuo Hirai said he would not rule out considering an exit strategy.
At the beginning of February there was speculation about a sale of Sony Mobile," division head Hiroki Totoki was quoted as saying by the newspaper in an interview published on its website late on Monday. "It's completely untrue."
Totoki, however, said that their mobile phone business needs to be refocused. Over the past few months, Sony has been facing stiff competition in the handset business from the likes of Samsung, Apple and Xiaomi.
Earlier this week, Sony unveiled the Xperia M4 Aqua, which will be positioned as a mid range Android handset. It has a premium waterproof design and some decent hardware internals under the hood.