MOBILE MAKER Sony Ericsson has confirmed to The INQUIRER that it is experiencing a shortage of essential components for some of its feature phones, which will lead to lower sales over the busy Christmas season.
Phones affected by the supply shortage include the Txt, Txt Pro and Mix Walkman models, which launched only recently.
"We are experiencing shortage of key components used in some feature phones, affecting volumes of these products," a spokesperson for Sony Ericsson told The INQUIRER, confirming an earlier report by Reuters.
Sony Ericsson was tight-lipped about why it is experiencing supply issues, but said it had nothing to do with the floods in Thailand that are affecting production at Sony Professional Europe. Despite probing, Sony Ericsson refused to tell us why it does not have the components required.
The company previously reported supply issues on multiple occasions after the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan earlier this year, but it has mostly recovered from that incident.
Sony announced plans to buy out Ericsson's share of the decade-old joint venture last month for €1.05bn. It is number nine in the rankings of global handset makers and claims that its Android smartphones make up 11 per cent of the market, a decent share of a highly competitive arena.
Missing out on some holiday season sales will be a significant loss, however, particularly as feature phones still make up 20 per cent of its business.
With Sony Ericsson refusing to explain the situation, it is difficult to understand why there is a problem. This could lead to speculation that it is using mysterious supply shortages to cover up weak sales of its feature phones, which are likely slipping amidst the rising tide of smartphones from rival companies. µ
Sign up for INQbot – a weekly roundup of the best from the INQ