With only 2.6 percent of smartphones worldwide running Windows, and Microsoft’s revenue from the division dropping by 49 percent, you can understand why many are saying that the company may call time on its mobile initiative. But it seems that someone forgot to tell Vaio, which has just unveiled the Phone Biz – a Windows 10 smartphone aimed at business users.
This is the second smartphone to come from Vaio - now a company in its own right after Sony sold off its PC division two years ago. Its first release was the imaginatively-titled Vaio Phone early last year, which turned out to be an almost exact copy of Panasonic’s Eluga U2.
The Phone Biz will be launching in April, but it will initially only be available in Japan. It certainly looks a lot more stylish than Vaio’s first effort, but beneath that sleek aluminum body lies some fairly mid-range hardware.
Along with a 5.5-inch 1080p LCD screen, the Biz features an octocore 1.5GHz Snapdragon 617 processor and 3GB RAM. It also comes with 16GB of internal storage, a microSD slot, a 13MP rear camera and a 5MP front-facing version.
While the specs make it less powerful than Microsoft’s Lumia 950 and 950XL smartphones, the Biz still has the hardware to support Windows 10 Continuum mode; being able to run the operating system on a desktop is a feature Vaio will be hoping appeals to business users.
Vaio will sell the Phone Biz from about 50,000 yen ($432) unlocked. There’s no word on if or when it’ll be available outside of Japan.