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Sony Ericsson set to rebrand as Sony by mid-2012

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A Sony Ericsson executive has told The Times of India that the company's transition to the Sony brand will be complete by mid-2012.

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The Times of India is reporting that Kristian Tear, an executive VP at Sony Ericsson, has pegged the company's transition into the Sony brand to be complete by the middle of next year — a move that was fully expected following Sony's buyout of Ericsson in the decade-old joint venture back in October. Additionally, Tear adds that although the company hasn't "been as fierce as [it was] a few years back," it'll be doubling down on its smartphone efforts, eliminating feature phones altogether (something we've heard before), and pouring more money into advertising and marketing in key markets, which will obviously be critical to consumer recognition that Sony is back in the cutthroat phone game. Ultimately, Sony's stated goal is to become the number one Android vendor — and with players like Samsung and HTC dominating the market, the road is a long, steep one.