Mobile handset maker Sony Ericsson's third-quarter profit was in line with expectations on Friday, but it was tight-lipped about a report electronics giant Sony was set to take full ownership of the brand.

Pretax profit was 31 million euros ($42 million), just higher than the mean forecast of 27 million euros in a Reuters poll and a swing back from a loss of 42 million in the previous quarter.

Last week, a source with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters that Sony is in talks to buy Ericsson's 50 percent stake in the joint venture.

The company, which stuck to its outlook for the market, said that it would shift all its production to smartphones during 2012. ($1 = 0.730 Euros)

(Reporting by Simon Johnson)