Nothing lasts forever. As it is with leftovers, so it is with Android phones, or at least their manufacturers' willingness to expend time and money updating the software. XperiaBlog reports that Sony announced a dozen of its older Android phones won't be getting any more software updates. That means no software at all, not just major Android version bumps. The former flagship Xperia S and its American cousin the Xperia Ion are probably the most popular phones among them.
Sony has announced that a previously promised maintenance update for the Xperia S, Xperia SL, and Xperia Acro S is hitting the internet tubes now. These devices received an Android 4.1 update a while back, but now the OEM is tying up some loose ends with a new Jelly Bean build. It should reach all users soon.
Good news for Sony fans: the company is finally starting to roll out Jelly Bean updates to some of its more notable 2012 smartphones. The former headliner Xperia S, its brother the SL, and the camera-focused SL all have Android 4.1 waiting for them. Users will need the a Windows PC and the Sony PC Companion to download and install the updated software, which includes a refreshed kernel as well.
It's been a long time coming, guys – we've definitely seen our fair share of upset Xperia P owners who've been waiting for this update. But, the good news is that it's finally here, and the P is joined by the go and E Dual.
According to the Sony blog, the 4.1 update not only brings Jelly Bean, but also a slew of new enhancements that Sony has been working to "blend" with the OS.
Sony announced today on it's official Sony Mobile Developer blog that the Xperia S "experimental AOSP support" project, first announced by JBQ back in August, is no more. It was an interesting idea, to be sure - a non-Nexus device that would be supported both with the help of members of the Google developer community, as well as AOSP maintainer JBQ, on the AOSP main branch.
The project did see some success, too - Android was booting, and according to Sony, Wi-Fi and sensors were up and running.
In a gesture of good faith, Sony, on its developer blog, has announced the company is releasing the software binaries for the Xperia S. It has done so explicitly in support of Android developer JBQ's "experimental" support for the device in AOSP (found here). If you're unfamiliar with the project, we covered it earlier this month when it was announced.
- Download: Xperia S software binaries
The software binaries Sony released consist mainly of drivers for the hardware on the Xperia S's chipset.
The head of Google's Android Open Source Project (AOSP), Jean-Baptiste Queru, made an interesting proposal recently. He added a new device to the AOSP repository, but this is no Nexus variant. Queru created an empty git project for the Sony Xperia S, but he needs the community to get behind the initiative. This will be the first device not designed under Google's supervision to be supported under AOSP, and that could be a big deal.
It looks like the Galaxy S III isn't the only device getting a makeover in the color department: Sony just announced that the Xperia S will be available soon in dark silver. The device is currently available in both white and black, so if you have some sort of phobia against the extreme color palate, then this new version may be the answer to your I-want-an-Xperia-S-but-hate-black-and-white prayers.
Unfortunately, Sony failed to mentioned when exactly this new color option will become available, only suggesting that we "keep [our] eyes peeled."
- 4.3-inch 1280x720 display
- 1.5GHz dual-core processor
- 32GB built-in storage
- 12MP Exmor R camera
- Android 4.0
Say what you will about Sony and its mobile products, but the complete transparency regarding ICS updates on the 2011 Xperia line has been nothing short of impressive. In their most recent blog post, Sony has detailed the ICS update for the Xperia S, which is rolling out now.
The update features a new features a new suite of entertainment apps: Walkman, Album, and, Movies. According to Sony:
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.