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[Update: OTA resuming] Sony begins rolling out Android 7.0 Nougat OTA to the Xperia Z5, Z3+, Z4 Tablet

The Xperia Z5 series (Z5, Z5 Compact, and Z5 Premium) was on the list of devices that Sony promised to bring Android 7.0 Nougat to. After releasing the update to the more recent X Performance and XZ, then the X and X Compact, Sony is now ready to bring Nougat 7.0 to the Z5.

The OTA has started rolling out to some Xperia Z5 and Xperia Z5 Premium users and will probably expand to the Z5 Compact soon. It's a large download at more than 1.2GB, and it should up your phone's software to version 32.3.A.0.372.

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PlayStation Vue Mobile 2.0 gets a program guide, sub-profile creation, and more

PlayStation Vue is a TV streaming service that provides live shows, sports, and On Demand to subscribers. Despite the name, it is not limited to Sony's gaming consoles. There is an Android TV app for sitting back on your couch to watch your favorite shows, as well as a mobile version for on-the-go content consumption on your phone or tablet.

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Sony shows off the first 3-layer stacked CMOS image sensor with DRAM for smartphones

At the International Solid-State Circuits Conference this week, Sony took the time to reveal the first 3-layer stacked CMOS sensor (with DRAM) for smartphones ever, which has the potential to lend itself to some amazing leaps in mobile photography.

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[Deal Alert] Sony Xperia X Compact drops to just $350 ($150 off) at Amazon and Best Buy

Back around the time of the Galaxy Nexus, I recall a counter-culture developing, calling for an end to the insanity of oversized phones with screens as big as 4.7 inches. They wanted a smaller alternative, built for human hands and human pockets. While the itty bitty smartphone committee might have lost the good fight in a general sense, they now have a few more options, including the Xperia X Compact. Its screen is only 4.6 inches. Hey, it's the principle that counts.

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Sony's CES announcements include new sound bars, TVs, and headphones

Sony is, of course, at CES 2017 in Las Vegas. As you'd expect it has a great many new products, ranging from new TVs to new Blu-Ray players. However, in our opinion, what is most exciting in Sony's announcements are the Chromecast built-in (or is that Google Cast?) products and the newly-unveiled Android TVs, plus some new headphones.

Sound bars and speakers

First up is a new sound bar, the catchily named HT-ST5000. This is Sony's flagship sound bar for 2017, so it has all the top-of-the-line features, such as Dolby Atmos, hi-res audio, and twelve advanced speakers. Sony says the HT-ST5000 is for home theater setups, and proves that with the number or ports and connectivity options: three HDMI ports, one HDMI ARC port, a USB input, Bluetooth and NFC, and a number of digital and analog connections.

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[Deal Alert] Pick up a 2-port Aukey car charger with QC 3.0 for just 8 bucks after coupon on Amazon ($5 off)

As a community of tech addicts, we tend to be a bit more demanding of our phone's battery life than the average user. Because of this, we need to take advantage of every opportunity available to recharge our gear. A perfect time to top off the tank of the ol' smartphone is during the daily commute. If you are fortunate enough to have a short one (you lucky devil) then you need a car charger that can provide the much-needed juice in a hurry. 

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[Deal Alert] Grab an Xperia X Compact ($279.99), Xperia XZ ($429.99), or a JBL Pulse 2 ($119.95) at B&H Photo

B&H is one of my favorite stores. It is always dependable, most of the time has very good prices, and customer service is great as well. They are running a DealZone sale on a couple of Xperia phones and a JBL Pulse 2 Bluetooth speaker, among other things. Hurry up, it's a flash sale that will expire soon.

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[Deal Alert] Get a 15% statement credit for Xperia X, XA, MicroSD cards, headphones, and other Sony products with Amazon Prime Store Card

Itching to get your hands on some great Sony gear? Hurry over to Amazon and do some shopping because you might be able to score a total of 15% back on select Sony products if you purchase them with an Amazon Store Card. Over 2,000 listings qualify for the deal in most of the major product categories, including audio equipment like headphones and speakers, Bravia televisions, Xperia smartphones, and memory cards. The offer ends at midnight (PST) tonight, so get moving on this one.

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Google, Samsung, HTC, Oculus, Sony, and Acer form the Global Virtual Reality Association, the first VR special interest group

Perhaps you haven't noticed yet, but virtual reality is kind of a big deal. Samsung has holiday-themed ads running on primetime TV and sports, the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift are breaking new ground in a stale gaming industry, and even Google is pushing its new Daydream platform hard. The powers that be think there's money to be made, and that means they're willing to work together (at least to some degree) in pursuit of it. Hence the creation of the Global Virtual Reality Association, announced by Samsung on its corporate blog.

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[Deal Alert] Sony MDR-XB950BT/B Bluetooth, NFC, and extra bass headphones down to $89.99 on Woot

Want a great last-minute gift for the geek, gadgeteer, gamer, office worker, or commuter, in your life? What about a gift to yourself for the holidays — nobody said we couldn't just buy something nice for us, right? Well, there's a great Woot deal on a pair of Sony headphones and it should be right up your alley.

While the MDR-XB950BT/B name doesn't exactly roll off the tongue, these headphones do have features that make them very appealing. They work both over Bluetooth and a wired cable, with a 20-hour estimated battery life in wireless mode. They have NFC for easy pairing, big plush earcups, 40mm driver units, and a Bass Boost button that triggers the DSP to produce "club-like enhanced low-frequencies."

The MSRP is $199.99, but Amazon is selling them now for $128.

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