Sony Stakes Recovery on New Smartphone

TOKYO — When the head of NTT DoCoMo Inc., Japan’s biggest mobile carrier, took the stage in January to introduce its latest models, he declared Sony Corp.’s new Xperia Z smartphone his company’s top pick, the equivalent of a mother announcing her favorite child.

For Sony, it was a much-needed vote of confidence for one of the company’s most important new products in recent memory. The Xperia Z, which went on sale in Japan on Feb. 9, is Sony’s first smartphone developed from the ground up by its engineers and designers since a pricey divorce from its mobile phone partner Ericsson last year.

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