Sony has been releasing new flagship smartphones every 6-8 months recently, but that comes at a cost. Now the Nikkei business daily says Sony is planning to scale back its workforce. After cutting 1000 employees in October, Sony is expected to announce a new round of 1000 job cuts in the smartphone division to be completed by March of next year.
T-Mobile bought up some spectrum licenses in the 700MHz block A space in 2013, and has started upgrading its towers just recently to take advantage of it. However, there are only a few devices available that can connect to Tmo's 700MHz (band 12) network. That's about to change, according to an updated webpage on T-Mobile's site. The Nexus 6, Sony Xperia Z3, and other phones will be getting an update to add support soon.
Sony's international phones have unlockable bootloaders, and the company even encourages users to tinker around with neat extras like AOSP builds. Alas, in markets like the US the carriers are still the keepers of the keys for a lot of customers, and T-Mobile has once again insisted on locking that sucker down for anyone who buys its version of the Sony Xperia Z3. Now users with this lamentable affliction can at least get root access on their phones, thanks to a bounty-winning method from an XDA user.
A few images of Lollipop running on an Xperia phone have hit the web, and the most noticeable takeaway is what Sony has done to the navigation buttons.
The full-size screenshots can be found over in the original XperiaBlog post. All we care about is what's visible at the bottom of each. To put things simply, Sony has changed the icons, and not necessarily for the better.
Here are the on-screen navigation buttons on a Nexus device.
CyanogenMod supports a few new devices today, all of them Sony. Just head over to the CM download section and you can get nightly builds for the Xperia Z3, Z3 Compact, and Z3 Tablet Compact with LTE (that's Scorpion). This follows the WiFi version of this tablet getting support just a few days ago.
Xperia Z3 Tablet owners with a custom ROM addiction may be happy to know that CyanogenMod now has the hook up. If you're excited by this news, you can head over to CyanogenMod's crib, knock on the door, and ask for scorpion_windy. Just be careful. Scorpion_windy might not be in the mood.
On your way out, tell any DROID Maxx owners you know that CyanogenMod may have someone in the back working on obake again, because there are two freshly zipped files currently up for grabs.
The Xperia Z3v is the Z3 with Verizon branding. Since the logo alone isn't enough to keep customers happy, the carrier also provides them with the largest network in the US and occasional over-the-air updates. Currently it's pushing out an OTA (version 23.0.E.1.44) that hits the Sony flagship with a number of enhancements.
The standout item on the changelog, if you're into Play Movies, is the ability to stream in HD.
Dedicated technology newshounds have already heard that all of Sony's upcoming BRAVIA televisions will feature Android TV powering their integrated electronics. At CES, the biggest show around in terms of home theater (among other things), they've made good on that promise. Don't believe me? Watch these attractive people over-emote and demonstrate a BRAVIA television's Google Cast feature and ability to play games from the Play Store.
Android TV runs these TVs, including the various inputs and live television, in a manner similar to some Roku-branded HDTVs already on the market.
While Sony's initial Android Wear offering, the SmartWatch 3, is perfectly fine from a technical point of view, one of the words we heard from commenters over and over again was "ugly." Even Ryan Whitwam could only call it "acceptable" in his review. Sony's hoping to fix the lackluster looks of the SmartWatch 3 with a new version clad in a stainless steel body and watch strap. And boy, it's amazing what a little metal can do.
Look, we're not in the audiophile business. We don't cover music products that don't feature Android in some way, shape, or form. And running bleeding-edge software is not a prerequisite for quality sound. But seriously, Sony, if you're going to charge twelve hundred dollars for a device that runs Android, could you not load it with an OS build that's over two years old? Alas, such is the case with the Walkman NW-ZX2 announced at CES.