Before Sony Ericsson became Sony Mobile, the company seemed committed to developing an Android 4.0 update, going so far as to release alpha ROMs for a number of Xperia devices, and more recently a beta for the Xperia Play. Here we are, a quarter of the way into 2012, and Xperia owners are still gnawing on last year's official Gingerbread. Although, there may finally be a light at the end of the tunnel; the Sony Mobile blog has announced that the first Android 4.0 updates will roll out to select Xperia phones in mid-April. Don't get too excited when wireless carriers are involved though.

The devices slated for the first round of updates in mid-April are the fairly uncommon Xperia arc S, Xperia neo V and Xperia ray. After giving that update time to play itself out, the next round of devices are up in late May or early June. This batch will include the Xperia arc, Xperia PLAY, Xperia neo, Xperia mini, Xperia mini pro, Xperia pro, Xperia active, and Sony Ericsson Live.

Like an increasing number of Android device updates, the Xperia ICS update will not be sent out over-the-air. Sony is going to be making the software available through the PC Companion and Bridge for Mac. Additionally, there won't be any update notifications on your device. Presumably, if you're not paying attention, it's going to be easy to miss the initial rollout.

Then there's one last caveat, in case you were still feeling optimistic. Sony points out that the actual availability and scheduling of the update "will vary by market and carrier requirements." Essentially, your carrier is still going to have to certify the updates, and that could mean some lengthy delays if bugs are found. Can't say we're surprised though - that's the way things tend to work when carriers get involved.

[Sony Mobile]

Ryan Whitwam
Ryan is a tech/science writer, skeptic, lover of all things electronic, and Android fan. In his spare time he reads golden-age sci-fi and sleeps, but rarely at the same time. His wife tolerates him as few would.

He's the author of a sci-fi novel called The Crooked City, which is available on Amazon and Google Play.

  • Rob

    "Sony is going to be making the software available through the PC Companion and Bridge for Mac."

    *Sigh* Again us Linux users get screwed over.

  • Zed Zee

    This really just shows how lazy Sony is. Ericsson or Mobile doesn't seem to have made ANY impact as to how they treat their customers.

    It seems their focus is more on profits than actually caring for their customers.

    But if they want to lose the repeat business, that's their choice.

    I'm on Xperia Play but I'm SERIOUSLY considering moving back to hTC. Not only do they do FOTA updates but their tech support responses come back within 24 hours, which is much more than I can say for Sony.

  • http://www.dorksanddorkettes.com Longeye

    Just checking, but this won't include the x10 mini pro, will it? The Xperia mini pro is different, because they didn't drop it like a hot stone and leave all x10 users stuck on 2.1....
    When my contract is out; moving away from any sony phone I think...

  • ahmed

    (leave all x10 users stuck on 2.1....)

    thank god for the custom roms

    sony phones are amazing but customer service and support are really bad

    • http://www.dorksanddorkettes.com Longeye

      I can write whole command line systems, I've built more GUI applications than I can shake a stick at, and I'm proficient in 6 languages with a passing knowledge of 3 more...
      And GOD HELP ME I've not been able to stick a custom ROM on the bloody thing! It's rooted but I just cannot figure it out! It sounds stupid but there it is :/

      • TKL

        Oh dear! Really?? Not even with the help on XDA forum? In the two years i've been following it, they've had answers to everything. The only problem I have is I can't use overclocked roms, they won't load.

        • http://www.dorksanddorkettes.com Longeye

          Oh the forum has been fantastic; it's a really great place, it just doesn't ever seem to work... I follow a -> b -> c and then nothing works :/
          I might just start a topic along the lines of "DEAR GOD PLEASE HELP ME SMART PEOPLE!!", that's gotta do it ;)
          As for overclocked ROMs I've got no advice ^_^;;

  • TKL

    Yes, that might do the trick, a lot of people would post there, perhaps even me.

    • http://www.dorksanddorkettes.com Longeye

      Thank you for the general advice, you kicked me into action and I stalked a few people on G+ who I thought could help ;)
      I've finally gotten a decent ROM and kernel installed on my phone and it's working perfectly!

  • Avohkah Tamer

    Well, then. If it's only going to be available via the PC Companion software, and not OTA at all, looks like Verizon Xperia Play phones will NOT receive Ice Cream Sandwich.

    That software isn't compatible with Verizon R800x phones for some ridiculous reason, and Sony does not plan to make it compatible. It's simply not built into the phone's firmware in the first place.

    Welp, looks like it's time for me to start looking for a new phone.

  • Dark Lord

    So there is no update for Xperia X10i after 2.3.3 ?