Panasonic to venture abroad in smartphones, plans Europe launch in March

The Japanese electronics giant aims to sell millions of phones abroad after ending international sales in 2005

Panasonic said Friday it would venture abroad to sell smartphones, beginning with Europe in March and then expanding to the U.S., China, and rest of Asia.

The Osaka-based electronics manufacturer published images of a prototype of its first global model, which it said would have a 4.3-inch OLED (organic light-emitting diode) screen, and would be waterproof and dust resistant.

The company suffered years of tepid sales prior to pulling out of international phone sales in 2005, before modern smartphones entered the scene. But electronics makers increasingly see the new wave of advanced phones as a crucial part of their product lineups. Sony said earlier this year it will pay US$1.5 billion to take full control of its phone joint venture with Ericsson.

Panasonic and other Japanese companies are also battling in a largely saturated domestic market, which is under pressure from foreign giants like Apple and Samsung.

Panasonic said it aimed to sell 9 million smartphones outside Japan in the fiscal year through March 2016, compared to 5 million in Japan. It said it would produce its first global model in a factory located in Malaysia.

At home, Panasonic sells a wide range of smartphones through local carriers such as NTT DoCoMo and Softbank, which have many features specifically for the Japanese market, such as digital payments and reception of Japan's dedicated TV broadcasts for mobiles. The company has a camera-like phone line branded after its Lumix digital camera line, as well as a line branded after its Viera TVs.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

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

Tags consumer electronicsPanasonicsmartphonesmobile

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

Jay Alabaster

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?