Panasonic has officially withdrawn from the consumer smartphone market in Japan and the rest of the world. It will instead focus on key areas where the consumer technology giant has a stronger presence and will develop business phones that will be more in the mould of its Toughbook range of PCs and tablets.
Speaking to Reuters, Panasonic president Kazuhiro Tsuga said that with the company suffering losses of around $15 billion (£9.6 billion) in the last two fiscal years, divisions that fail to meet a five per cent operating margin goal within three years will be jettisoned. He was seemingly unwilling to let the mobile division last that long, however. It was likely to lose more than 1.1 billion yen (£7.04 million) in the coming year. It posted losses of 8.1 billion yen last year.
"It's not acceptable for the company to be bleeding red ink like this, so we have to think about ways to develop assets that we do have in a more effective direction," said Tsuga.
The decision means we will not see another device in the Panasonic Eluga range. That brand is effectively dead.