Sony Mobile’s Xperia S has burst into the smartphone charts, breaking into the top 10 just two weeks after launch and predicted to hit the top five next week.
Sources claim sales are so strong that Sony is looking to increase shipments to meet demand as retailers such as Argos, Littlewoods and Tesco clamour to sell the device. League table figures show the Xperia S, the first Sony-branded phone since the demise of the Sony Ericsson joint venture earlier this year, has been selling strongly with sales of just under 10,000 for the week ending 23 March, placing it at number seven in the chart.
According to the figures, the Xperia S accounted for 3% of total sales of mobile phones, marginally behind both the BlackBerry Curve 9300 and BlackBerry Bold 9900. While sales of both BlackBerry devices are falling, the Xperia S’ sales have been soaring, guaranteeing it a place in the top five next week at current sales rates.
The Xperia S has been backed by a £19m marketing campaign and keen pricing. One source close to the manufacturer said: ‘The Sony Xperia S is storming the ranks. It is forecast to be in the top five in the next seven days. We can’t get enough of them – demand is outstripping supply. And Sony is trying to get more stock shipped out.’
Store staff echoed this view. A Three sales assistant said: ‘It’s selling really well. Customers like the fact it’s no longer Sony Ericsson just Sony and it’s in a good price range, starting from just £25 per month.’
A T-Mobile retail assistant said: ‘We are selling loads. After you give the customer a demo, when they see the screen, they are sold. It’s an easy phone to sell.’ Operators welcomed the challenge the Xperia S throws down to Samsung and Apple. One said: ‘It is good to see more competition, particularly with Apple’s dominance of the market.’
CCS Insight MD Shaun Collins said: ‘It’s a great start for a new brand. Sony has deep pockets and is aggressively promoting what is a decent phone with an enormous marketing campaign. They have marshalled their considerable powers in terms of content and brand. It’s a potent mix.’
Editor: Carol Millett