Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Analyst Predicts Sony Image Sensor Business Slowdown

Bloomberg: Sony image sensor business is likely to weaken amid lower sales of Apple iPhones, an analyst at JPMorgan Chase & Co. wrote as he downgraded the company. IPhone X production will probably fall 50% QoQ and the weakness is likely to continue for the first half of the year as demand for high-end smartphones plateaus, according to J.J. Park. Sony gets half of its image sensor revenue from Apple, Park wrote. He also said the trend for adopting dual cameras is not as strong as first believed, including among Chinese phone makers, which will further hit Sony’s sales.

In Sony’s latest quarter, image sensors accounted for 9.4% of revenue and 22% of operating profit:

Sony is said to have a 70% market share for high-end image sensors in smartphones. “Despite a correction in Apple supply chain names, Sony has massively outperformed its global peers thanks to the structural trend of dual-cam,” Park.


  1. The sales level of iPhoneX has little effect on Sony since there is not more Sony sensors in the iPhone X versus the iPhone 8Plus. So Bloomberg analyst is kind of acknowledging it is Apple iPhone sales in general which could be a problem. But then again Apple is only 50% of Sony's sales and if the competition has a Sony sensor which is certainly the case then why mentioning Apple in the first place? The information about smartphone market saturation is old news. The real new information is "the trend for adopting dual cameras is not as strong as first believed". This information is interesting, what did they expect? 100% of smartphones with a dual setup within 2 years so that Sony can maintain its 35% growth rate YoY forever? Pierre Cambou - Yole Développement

    1. Agreed, I wasn't convinced that iPhone would do well with the X causing people to hold out on the first and MWC around the corner; but they're not the only girl at the dance.

      ISW wrote recently: "Sony reports quarterly earning results with a nice increase in its image sensors sales and outlook:

      "We have upwardly revised our sales forecast by 20 billion yen due to an increase in our forecast for unit sales of image sensors for mobile products, compared with the August forecast. ...". http://image-sensors-world.blogspot.ca/2017/10/sony-rises-image-sensor-sales-outlook.html .

      Huawei's next P-series flagship is rumored to have 3 cameras (on the back): https://www.gsmarena.com/so_thats_what_3_cameras_on_the_back_of_a_phone_look_like__alleged_huawei_p20_renders_are_here-news-29458.php .

      There is also the popular laptop market and security cameras, along with the push to more automotive cameras.

      If anything Samsung is a bigger loss (long ago forgotten), it's Note has a top camera (as does Apple), but Sony sensors lead the way in cameras (a market that Samsung unfortunately left behind after it's last great cameras, the NX series).

      Lower sales for Apple doesn't help Sony but I find these 'analysis reports' always paid too dim or too bright a picture, ironically.


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