Sony Ericsson faces shortages of flagship phones

Disruption to component supplies after Japan's quake could hit new handsets

Sony Ericsson faces shortages of three new flagship cell phones after Japan's earthquake and tsunami disrupted supplies of key components, it said Tuesday.

"The smartphone industry relies on northern Japan as one of the largest producers of components and sub-components," said Bert Nordberg, president of Sony Ericsson. Nordberg was speaking in a conference call held to announce the cell phone maker's results for the first three months of the year.

The double natural disasters of March 11 and a subsequent nuclear-plant crisis caused massive disruption to businesses across most of east Japan. Some companies sustained direct damage to their factories while others have been unable to supply components due to problems with distribution, availability of raw materials or electricity shortages.

Businesses in the region are bouncing back, but some with heavier damage to facilities are still unable to resume production.

"A number of our suppliers and sub-suppliers are based in the area that was hardest hit," said Nordberg.

Sony Ericsson suffered little impact during the quarter because it had already secured most of the components it needed before the quake. However, supply chain disruption will be felt this quarter.

"For Q2 we see an impact on volume on the Xperia Arc, Xperia Play and Xperia Neo," Nordberg said, naming Sony Ericsson's three new flagship phones. "The reason being that these products contain high-end components such as cameras, LCDs and batteries."

The company recently launched the Xperia Arc and Xperia Play handsets in several markets. Limited quanties of the Xperia Neo also became available in China, but the broad launch of the smartphone has been shifted to the third quarter, said CFO William Glaser.

Sony Ericsson has informed cell phone carriers that it might not be able to meet orders.

Availability of components has begun to stabilize and Sony Ericsson has also turned to alternative suppliers for some products. The disruption could continue for some time.

"We anticipate that some of the supply chain will continue to be impacted by this disaster due to the damage to infrastructure and power constraints in Japan," said Nordberg. "The situation is dynamic, and at this stage it's too early to predict the medium term effect on our business."

(Mikael Ricknäs in Stockholm contributed to this story)

Martyn Williams covers Japan and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Martyn on Twitter at @martyn_williams. Martyn's e-mail address is martyn_williams@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags business issuesSony Ericsson Mobile Communicationsconsumer electronicsPhones

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?