Smartphone launch marks first phone foray outside home market of Japan...
Panasonic is to expand its smartphone business beyond its home country of Japan, starting with the launch of devices in Europe from March next year.
The company intends to use "Europe as a stepping stone to the global market", Panasonic said.
Pictured above is a prototype of what is expected to be Panasonic's first phone to launch outside of Japan. The phone will have a 4.3-inch, 960x540-pixel OLED screen and a waterproof and dustproof design.
Panasonic hasn't specified which operating system the phone will use, but Reuters has quoted Panasonic as saying the device will run Android.
The smartphone is geared for business people in their 30s and 40s, according to Reuters.
Panasonic intends to use the phone as a reference model for the handsets it will release outside of Japan in future.
It is aiming to sell 1.5 million smartphones in Europe during the next fiscal year, it said in a statement released on Friday.
Panasonic said that it hopes to sell nine million smartphones outside Japan - in Europe, Asia, China and the US - in the fiscal year ending March 2016.
The phone will come with Panasonic's power-saving technology and NFC capability could be added in future.
Pictured above is the side view of the Panasonic prototype device.