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Sony announces Android 7.0 upgrade list—includes the Xperia Z5, Xperia X, and more

With Android 7.0 now officially rolling out to devices, you might wonder which non-Nexus phones will see the update some day. Sony has released a list of devices it intends to update to Nougat at some point in the not too distant future. The gist: if you've got a Sony phone from 2015 or 2016, you'll probably get the Nougat update.

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Sony announces $500 Android Auto head unit, its first, says it's "Android Auto 2" compatible

Sony has a new Android Auto head unit - its first, actually - the catchily-named XAV-AX100. The main draw of the device seems to be the sound quality, with four "55-watt Dynamic Reality Amp 2" amplifiers and Sony's EXTRA BASS low-boost circuitry supposedly overcoming engine noise to deliver crystal clear sound.

On the Android side, Sony says the XAV-AX100 has Android Auto 2 installed. If you're not overly sure what that is, you're not alone. Maybe it's the things Google announced at I/O this year for Auto? That would include things like OK Google hotwording and OEM apps, but possibly the most important announcement, WiFi projection mode - which means the Android Auto connection from your phone to the head unit is wireless - is not mentioned in the blog post Sony published today.

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Xperia X Performance now eligible for Android N beta testing, with a few catches

Many were surprised when Sony began offering an Android N Developer Preview build for the Xperia Z3. Nobody expected a two-generation old Sony flagship to join a beta program that only Google devices were included in. Sony is now following up by offering up an Android N beta build for the Xperia X Performance, a phone that we didn't especially like.

The beta, which Sony is calling the Xperia Beta Program, is currently only available to Xperia X Performance users in European countries (specifically Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, Italy, Spain, Portugal, and the Netherlands). Sony has not commented on whether it plans to expand the beta's reach.

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Deal Alert: Get Sony's 43" 4K Android TV (2015 model) for $698 - with a $300 Dell eGift card

Buying a new TV is not something I typically look at doing. Sure, I like to go to Best Buy and look at the shiny things, dream a bit, and then look dejectedly at my empty wallet. Yet, when it comes down to it, I keep my TV a very long time. Lately, however, I have noticed quite a few tempting deals on Sony TVs. A few days ago, we informed you all that the Sony XBR-43X830C 43” 4K Android TV was listed on eBay for $549.99. This 2015 model gives you a 4K LED display, 4K streaming from Netflix and YouTube, Android TV, and Cast support.

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[Update: $549.99] Deal Alert: Sony 43" 4K Android TV is down to $579.99 on eBay

Buying a house has taught me that everything is expensive and that you have to do your best to save money at every opportunity. Pennies here, dollars there, a few tenners over there, they all add up nicely when you sit down and do your math. So that's why I am a bit envious of you folks in the US and these frequent deals we keep seeing on Sony TVs.

This one for example is on the 43" XBR-43X830C. This isn't a movie theater TV by any means, but it can do the job for a midsize room just fine.

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Team Win Recovery released for new phones and tablets from Samsung, Sony, Yu, Alcatel, and BQ

Team Win Recovery Project is the de facto standard for Android custom recoveries. While the open-source project often makes its way to disparate Android phones and tablets by the efforts of interested indie ROM developers, the maintainers of the project work tirelessly to bring official builds out as well. Today no less than seven new devices get the official treatment, and most of them are more niche, low-volume hardware that might not get major attention otherwise.

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[Deal Alert] Sony Xperia XA Ultra on sale for $312.22 (almost $60 off) via Amazon

The more premium Xperia X phones aren't that great, to be honest. The budget end of the spectrum seems easier to justify, though. The Xperia XA Ultra just launched in the US recently and it's already on sale through Amazon for $312. It's usually $370.

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[Deal Alert] Grab an unlocked Xperia X Performance for $579.99 on eBay

When Ryan looked at the Xperia X Performance last month, his verdict was that it had a nice display, decent specs, but deal breakers like the lack of a fingerprint scanner and the poor camera left a sour taste in his mouth. That was nothing though compared to the shock of the price of the phone. $700. There are many, many better phones selling for that much and even less, so Sony's value proposition just seems ridiculous.

At a discounted price though, you could make a case for the X Performance. It does have a nice display after all, a solid build, a Snapdragon 820, IP68 water resistance (a bit of a rare feat still), 3GB of RAM, and if the camera's software is tweaked, it could yield good photos.

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Android Marshmallow comes to the Xperia M5 and M4 Aqua

The Xperia Z series has marked the high-end of Sony's smartphone line for years. The M5 sits somewhere lower on the food chain, but not much lower. You're looking at a 5-inch 1080p display, 3GB of RAM, a 21.5MP camera, plus both water and dust resistance.

Now you also get Android 6.0. Sony has begun pushing out an over-the-air update to this device.

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Sony's next flagship phone leaked, shows off new design and USB Type-C

Sony's phones have looked more or less the same from one generation to the next for years, but the company may be looking at a more substantial redesign. A device believed to be the F8331 has been photographed in the wild, and it doesn't look like the Sony phones of the past. It does still have some of the company's hallmark features, though.

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