The market for gigantic waterproof phones just got a lot more competitive. Google has slashed the price of the Sony Z Ultra Google Play edition by $200. That brings the price down from $649 to a much more respectable $449.
Taking the background in an image and blurring it is currently the big thing in mobile photography. HTC touted the feature when raving about the M8's duo camera. Google added a similar lens blur effect in the camera app it recently uploaded to the Play Store. Samsung, too, unsurprisingly packed this feature in alongside the plethora of others it crams into the Galaxy S5. Now Sony has uploaded its pre-existing effort to the Play Store, where it can more easily roll out future updates.
It doesn't matter which phone a Sony QX10 or QX100 owner uses, these cameras are better. The drawback is that the user experience is nothing short of awkward. One particular issue is slow NFC connection times, making it challenging to capture spontaneous shots (and aren't those the best kind?). Fortunately, this is the type of problem an update can address. Firmware version 3.0 is now available for both models, doing precisely that.
Sony has steadfastly refused to abandon its smart watch plans for Android Wear, which is totally its call. It might not work out well down the road, but you can get your hands on Sony's latest Smartwatch SW2 right now on the cheap. How cheap? Just $119.99 with free shipping (continental US only).
Sony's latest and greatest is getting a little bit better today as an update for the Xperia Z2 begins making its way out to devices. The Z2 was already on Android 4.4 KitKat, so there's no change on that front. The update (version 17.1.A.2.55) does include a number of notable tweaks and improvements, though.
Sony's typically quick about releasing the open source underpinnings of its devices. After having announced the Xperia T2 Ultra earlier this year, the company has now made the kernel files for the device available for download. The company's offering these files up for three variants of the device, the D5303, D5322, and XM50h. The software version for the first model is 19.0.1.A.0.207, while the latter two fall under 19.0.D.0.253.
One of the many, many wearables we saw at Mobile World Congress is now available for purchase, even if it is a little hard to find. Sony's Smartband SWR10, the company's answer to the Fitbit and similar devices, is now shipping from an Amazon reseller. We're not sure why one Amazon vendor seems to have it before everyone else, even before Sony's own store, but it's there if you want it.
Sony may not have the best track record when it comes to making its phones available across a wide number of carriers in the US, but it has no problem sharing its open source kernel files on a timely basis. The company officially announced the Xperia Z2 a month ago at Mobile World Congress, and now much of the handset's internal code is available for download on the web.
These files also apply for the Xperia Z2 Tablet, which Sony also unveiled at Mobile World Congress.
It's been scarcely a week since Android Wear exploded into the wearable scene, and everyone's been wondering about what will become of existing smart watch platforms. In the case of Sony's SmartWatch 2 (SW2) and SmartBand, it's full steam ahead. Yes, Sony isn't planning any Android Wear devices right now.
Lots of talk out there today. We’re focused on SW2 & SmartBand right now, but door’s def not closed to #AndroidWear - early days...