Sony has announced a maintenance update for the Xperia Z1 and the Z Ultra, which are just hitting American shores today. The devices are staying on Android 4.2 for the time being, but there are a number of important improvements on the way.


The update includes general performance and stability improvements, but also some specific tweaks for both devices. Here's what Sony has been up to:

Xperia Z1

  • tweaked the camera algorithm for even better all round performance
  • refined Sony’s Smart Social Camera platform, so Xperia Camera apps run more smoothly (particularly Burst Mode, Superior Auto, AR Effect and Sweep Panorama…)

Xperia Z Ultra

  • optimized touchscreen sensitivity, for both finger gestures and writing / sketching with pencils, metal pens and selected styluses

Both devices

  • re-calibrated the display ever so slightly, to ensure viewing experiences remain bright & bold
  • economised power consumption for longer battery life
  • streamlined Exchange connection for faster email sync, display and download

The update is starting to roll out now to unlocked devices, but the timing across the world may vary. Carrier versions of the Z1 and Z Ultra in some regions may wait a bit longer, though.

[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. http://goo.gl/WQIXBM

  • Michealtbh

    Breaks current root exploits and doesn't fix the bootloader unlock camera issue

    • Anon

      You can never truly break root, as someone will find a way to restore it agian and this may not be the camera partition fix now, but that doesn't mean they're not working on it.

    • Jason Bailey

      You can always root if you have a device thats bootloader unlockable and you choose to unlock your bootloader you just flash the Superuser.zip from CWM recovery.

      Bummer about the camera though. thats a big trade off :-(

      • Michealtbh

        Unlocking the bootloader breaks the camera

        • Jason Bailey

          Yeah, I have the Z Ultra so its not an issue for me... They really need to fix that for the Z1 though its just not a practical tradeoff. A big part of the allure of that device is the camera.

  • LowItalian

    Hopefully someone does new camera tests after this update.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lucyparanormal Daniel Tiberius

    Hopefully my Honk Kong Z Ultra isn't the last to get this update like the last one. I just got it two weeks ago.

    Either way it's nice that Sony is paying attention and keeping up.

  • Garry DeWitt

    Will it fix the mediocre contrast and poor viewing angles of my Z1? I love everything about this phone but the god damn display.

    • Anon

      Contrast maybe, viewing angles are subjective to the build and technology used. Why do you even need a viewing angle other than straight on? Do you like it when people can read what your looking too?

      • Garry DeWitt

        Do you by any chance own my Z1? Then guess what, you don't know how bad they are. Anything but 100% straight on gives distortion. And believe me, you never realize how often you aren't viewing your phone at a perfect angle until you have one with poor viewing angles. It frustrates me that other Z1s dont have this issue.

        And yes, I like being able to share content such as videos with friends where we both can see the video in good clarity without severely washed out colours.

        • mauswe

          If yours differ from other Z1, why not get it replaced?

          • Garry DeWitt

            Do you think that sony is going to care if I call them up and say I lost the panel lottery on their phone? *lots* of manufacturers source different panels for their devices (apple immediately comes to mind), it's a normal process. There's also the problem that I bought mine imported from the EU, and am in the US. I'm not sure how that would affect the warranty.

            I will call, actually. Maybe I'll get lucky. I'll give you a preemptive thanks, just in case they do replace mine.

          • mauswe

            Well yeah the importing makes it more of a hassle. Good luck!!

          • Edgar C. Maack

            I've got an old Xperia S replaced by SONY, refurbished but better than nothing... ;-)

  • http://www.facebook.com/morrissex Javier Cárdenas

    What about the Z tablet? Today it got a firmware that pursued to "improve" the gallery and other stuff I still haven't figured out.

  • matokne

    This post doesn't mention whether xperia z1 released in the US is LTE or not. There has been talks that it is not.

  • BobbyT

    worst flagship phone i ever own

  • Sahil Kaushik

    Xperia Z Ultra C6802 --> Proximity Sensor Issue still remains; We also need better sort capabilities in the Album...something in line with Lenovo K900. Will keep posting more as and when I see some area for improvement.

  • Sahil Kaushik

    And is there any way possible to get a louder output from the existing speakers on Z Ultra? Some software patch just like Bruce Wayne did on the Bat. ;-)

  • Dada

    will this solve the blank screen issues faced by Z1 users???

  • lannister

    I want the Z1, but I can’t bring myself to buy it as long as the bootloader unlock disables the camera.

    see: Galaxy S4 zoom &

    samsung galaxy note 3