The Japanese market will soon witness Sony and its former laptop division VAIO go head-to-head with each other in the smartphone market. This is because VAIO, which Sony had sold off back in 2014, is back with a new smartphone release (not its first!) and it runs Google’s widely popular Android operating system.
As announced today, the former Sony brand has today announced the launch of its first-ever Android smartphone called VAIO Phone A. This new device is very much similar in specification and design to the company’s previous smartphone — VAIO Phone Biz. But, the two handsets do differ in one glaring aspect, which is the operating system. The Phone Biz was the company’s attempt to sell Windows 10 Mobile devices, but it now also seems to be shifting focus towards Android.
This simple-named VAIO device sports a 5.5-inch Full HD display with a screen resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels, which is wrapped in an aluminum and tempered glass body. Under the hood, it is powered by an aging Snapdragon 617 chipset, coupled with 3GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage.
The VAIO Phone A also includes a rather small 2,800 mAh battery pack, which might not be enough for a smartphone this size. It also has a 13-megapixel rear shooter and runs vanilla Android 6.0 Marshmallow, which is a disappointment as Nougat 7.0 has been out for months. And Google has now also made the first developer preview of Android O available just yesterday.
Further, another significant change which has been introduced with the Phone A is dualSIM support, which was absent in the Phone Biz Windows phone. It is also compatible with dual standby (DSDS), which shows VAIO has surely raised the bar from their previous smartphone launch. It is unlocked and support for most 3G telecom carriers in Japan, as it features VoLTE support only of DoCoMo.
Now, the biggest question is whether VAIO offers any competition to its former parent company Sony. And the simple answer to the same is probably not because the said device might have decent looks but packs lackluster internals. This is just a meritless attempt on the former PC/laptop brand’s part and won’t exactly affect Sony’s 12 percent market share in Japan. Also, don’t expect this device to be made available outside of Japan but who knows!