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.
"We're going to join quad-core when we feel that the performance matches the battery efficiency," he said.
Sony officially unveiled the Sony Tablet P at IFA last August, but we have yet to see it here in the U.S. despite its release in other parts of the world. For those of you that don't remember, this unique tablet features two 5.5-inch LCD displays that fold over one another much like a Nintendo DS. What's neat about having two individual screens is that you can use use them for different functions simultaneously, so multitasking is a bit easier.
Sony's portfolio of non-Ericsson branded phones has just received two more additions, though they aren't much more than variations than the already-announced Xperia S.
The Xperia P features: a 4-inch "WhiteMagic" display, optimized for viewability in direct sunlight (for comparison, the Xperia S has a 4.3" display). It also features a 1 GHz dual core processor, 8 megapixel camera, NFC, and HDMI connectivity. The Xperia P will also launch alongside the SmartDock, which allows content on the phone's screen to be streamed to a TV.
Back in December of '11, Sony [Ericsson] released an Android 4.0 alpha ROM for the Xperia Arc S, Neo V, and Ray. The Sony dev teams has now released an update to this ROM, bringing into its beta stages.
Since the previous release, Sony has made a number of improvements to the ROM, including an updated UI, improved lockscreen, activated GSM modem and FM radios, and a quick dialer.
Unfortunately, Google Apps are not available for this ROM, nor are Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, as they're both still waiting for approval before they can implemented into the product.
The minds over at GTV Hacker have successfully achieved root on Sony Google TV boxes and TVs running the newest firmware version (Honeycomb 3.2). The exploit also allows for custom kernels to be loaded by hijacking the boot process. These custom kernels can, in turn, bring a number of desirable features to the device.
According to the GTVHacker blog, the following modifications are included in the custom kernel:
Modified flash plugin with random per box flash string for Content Provider Bypass.
According to Pocket-lint, Sony is planning to bestow PlayStation Certification onto upcoming HTC Android smartphones by the middle of the year. What does said certification entail?
Basically, the PlayStation Suite project (of which PlayStation Certified hardware is a part) currently consists of a dozen or so ported PSX titles from Sony's back catalog - like Crash Bandicoot, or Syphon Filter. They work on PS Certified Android phones as well as the PlayStation Vita.