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Sony Mobile appoints new chief as troubles persist

Next month, Hiroki Totoki will take over the division that has yet to make a major mark in smartphones. Sony announces earnings Friday, when it's expected to further slash smartphone shipments.

Sony's waterproof Xperia Z3 has won critical praise, but it ostensibly hasn't helped boost Sony's total sales. CNET

Sony Mobile Communications, the division that includes the company's smartphone business, will soon have a new boss.

The senior vice president of Sony's corporate planning and new business creation, Hiroki Totoki, will take over the division next month. He replaces Kunimasa Suzuki, who will become the executive vice president of Sony Entertainment, the company announced Thursday.

Sony's mobile division has had its fair share of troubles over the past couple of years. The company has failed to make a major mark in the smartphone business and its best efforts have proven fruitless.

Sony had hoped to ship 50 million smartphones during its fiscal year, which ends on March 31, but slashed that figure in July to 43 million units. A report surfaced last week saying that Sony will further slash smartphone shipments on Friday when it announces its earnings.

According to the statement Thursday, Totoki will take over the division on November 16. The company did not say why the change was made and did not immediately respond to a request for comment.