Sony kicks off Android Jelly Bean update for Xperia phones
Sony Mobile has begun rolling out Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android 4.1 Jelly Bean update to its Xperia-branded smartphones, promising improved performance as well as new and upgraded applications and features.
Sony is now delivering Android Jelly Bean to its Xperia T and Xperia V devices, with the Xperia TX slated to upgrade next month. "As soon as the Jelly Bean software is available for your device, you'll receive a notification in your phone," Sony states. "In most cases you'll have the option to download and update over-the-air, but in some instances the software package may only be accessible via PC Companion or Bridge for Mac." The manufacturer adds that Jelly Bean availability and rollout timing will vary by market and customer variants.
Android Jelly Bean, unveiled in mid-2012 during Google's annual I/O developer conference, promises a smoother and more responsive UI across the system, highlighted by triple buffering in the graphics pipeline for more consistent rendering as well as synchronized touch to reduce latency. Jelly Bean also brings a revamped homescreen that automatically adapts to fit content along with Google Now, which includes personalized information like local weather and traffic updates.
Sony's customized Android Jelly Bean for Xperia features overhauled, more intuitive versions of Sony Media apps including Walkman, Album and Movies, highlighted by a revamped library enabling users to view all their music, photos and videos in one place. Sony also touts improved app sorting and search tools as well as improved camera functionality.
Sony previously pledged to update all of its 2012 Xperia devices (including the global versions of the Xperia S, Acro S, Ion, P, Go and J) to Jelly Bean, but said the update will not extend to Xperia models produced prior to last year. The future of the 2011 Xperia line grew cloudy last summer after a Sony Mobile GB spokesperson participating in a Q&A on the unit's Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) page revealed "Unfortunately [Xperia] Arc S won't be getting the Jelly Bean update, but we're always developing new phones and making sure they get the latest updates." The spokesperson subsequently added "The Xperia Mini Pro won't be getting Jelly Bean." Sony Mobile initially denied the assertions and maintained the local spokesperson had spoken in error.
According to Google's Android Developers dashboard, Android Jelly Bean 4.1 currently powers 12.2 percent of all devices worldwide. Samsung Electronics has pledged to update 16 devices in its portfolio to run Jelly Bean, HTC will upgrade its One series products in turn, and LG Electronics has vowed to overhaul some of its Optimus smartphones as well. Google-owned Motorola Mobility has promised to upgrade most post-2011 devices to Jelly Bean and will offer a $100 credit to consumers who purchased some newer phones that are not in line for the update.
- read this Sony Mobile blog post
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