Sony is a company going through major changes - it recently announced plans to lay off 10,000 plus of its workers (some of those through buyouts), has instated a new CEO, and just had one of its worst fiscal years ever. It also recently ended its Android smartphone partnership with Ericsson, and plans to now produce handsets under its own name. It's a difficult and uncertain time for Sony, and the Walkman Z, unfortunately, seems to be an excellent microcosm of the company's larger problems.
All manufacturers want to make sure that apps work properly on their devices. Of course, the best way to make sure an app works on any given phone is to actually test the app on the device in question. For developers, though, that could cost a substantial amount of money - just think about how many Android devices are out there at the moment.
As an answer to this quandary, though, Sony has come up with a unique plan to allow developers to borrow Xperia devices.
Sony has done an excellent job at being transparent with its progress on the bringing Ice Cream Sandwich to a number of Xperia devices. It has kept users aware of what's going on throughout the process, as well as shared alpha and beta builds along the way. Now, though, it looks like the beta days are behind them and the build is ready for prime time for a certain Xperia devices.
Team iLuminate, one of the most visually impressive and creative dance troupes who just happened to
win be one of the finalists in America's Got Talent last year, recently joined Labrinth in this stunning performance at the Sony Xperia S party. There really isn't much to say here - just watch:
I've been a huge fan of iLuminate, and while this isn't by far their most original performance, it was still quite a treat.
CyanogenMod (CM) has long been the modding community's custom ROM of choice, and for good reason: it takes the goodness that is basic Android (AOSP) and adds a hearty dose of all-around improvement. The list of devices supported by CM is quite a long and impressive one (truth be told, they do a better job of supporting devices than the manufacturers do), and last night, cutting-edge nightly CM9 releases dropped for the Sony Xperia Arc (Anzu) and Xperia Neo (Hallon).
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.
Good news for anyone who bought one of the recent Sony Android tablets - namely the Tablet P and Tablet S - the update to Android 4.0 should be coming your way next month. The update will not only bring all of the benefits that ICS has to offer, but also a feature that will allow Tablet users to access and watch programs they've recorded on their compatible Sony Blu-Ray recorder.
Sony released the Xperia S open source archive today, providing all the tools necessary to build a kernel and start cooking up ROMs for the Xperia S from Sony's source code. In a post to Sony Mobile's developer blog today, the company also noted that the opening of the Xperia S archive marks the first time Sony has published source code for a product built around Qualcomm's Snapdragon S3.
The post goes on to advise that in order to flash the software, users will need to complete a few extra steps and run a special script (which is linked, along with a proprietary firmware file, in the original post).
When touchscreen phones first became mainstream, countless people talked about how "impractical" a touch-only device was. Since then, touch devices have become the norm in the smartphone realm, with basically every modern high-end phone packing at least some sort of touch input.
Sony is taking the touch revolution to a whole new level with the Xperia sola, though, by bringing a new feature to the table called "floating touch" that allows the user to simply hover their finger over items in the browser and highlight them, much like using a mouse.
Sony brought some sleek new devices to MWC, but we were surprised to see nothing truly groundbreaking - specifically, a lack of quad-core CPUs. CNET Asia got a few minutes with Stephen Sneeden, product marketing manager for Sony Mobile, and he clarified the companies stance, saying that we likely won't see quad-core phones from the company until early 2013.