Smartphones boost Sony Ericsson earnings, CEO bets on Android

Phone manufacturer Sony Ericsson continues to turn itself around. After a dismal 2009, the fifth-largest handset maker reported its second consecutive quarterly profit thanks in part to an increase in sales of a new smartphone, the Xperia X10, which uses the Google Android platform. 

In fact, the company's early success with Android has prompted Sony Ericsson, which is a joint venture between Sweden's Ericsson and Japan's Sony, to bet heavily on Google's operating system. CEO Berg Nordberg told the Wall Street Journal that the company likely will make Android a key operating system for all of its smartphones. In addition, he said that as Android devices get cheaper they will compete with Symbian and Windows Mobile devices in the same price range, making it likely that Sony Ericsson will stop using either Symbian or Windows Mobile.

During the second quarter, Sony Ericsson reported a net profit of $15.5 million, a reversal of the $275.4 million net loss it posted a year earlier. It was lower though than the company's first quarter 2010 net profit of $28.4 million. 

Sony Ericsson shipped 11 million phones in the second quarter, with an average selling price of $206.93. A year ago, Sony Ericsson shipped 13.8 million devices at an average price of $157. The company's sales in the quarter rose 4.3 percent to $2.27 billion.

The handset maker estimated its global handset market share remained flat from the previous quarter at around 4 percent. Research firm IDC estimates Sony Ericsson had a first quarter 2010 global market share of 3.6 percent, down from 6 percent in the first quarter of 2009.

For more:
- see this Bloomberg article
- see this release
- see this WSJ article (sub. req.)
- see this Reuters article
- see this WSJ interview with Sony Ericsson's CEO (sub. req.)
- see this FierceWireless Q2 earnings page

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