Jan 21 AT 12:46 AM Alex Wagner 13 Comments

Sony’s Android 4.4 user interface shown off in leaked D6503 ‘Sirius’ screenshots

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After getting an early peek at the Sony D6503 “Sirius” hardware over the weekend, we’re now getting a preview of the custom Android 4.4 user interface that’s expected to come preloaded on the Sirius when it hits store shelves.

A new report out of XperiaBlog contains a cornucopia of images that reveal new features of the C6503 as well as tweaks that Sony has made to its custom user interface with the move to KitKat. For example, a screenshot of the D6503′s Camera app shows that it will include support for 4K video capture as well as a handful of other features, such as a “Timeshift video” tool that’ll record high frame-rate video and add slow-mo effects.

The D6503′s Settings app shows that the device will feature a “Glove mode” that’ll allow users to operate its touchscreen while wearing gloves. There’s also a new Smart Backlight Control feature that, much like Samsung’s SmartStay, will detect when the user is looking at the screen and prevent it from going to sleep. A double-tap to wake option is also included in the Settings menu.

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Rounding out the list of new features found on the Sony D6503 and its Android 4.4 UI include an Answering Machine that can be set to pick up a call after a certain period of time and a new “Simple Home” launcher that includes larger icons and fonts as well as a 3×4 app grid.

When it comes to the look and feel of Sony’s custom Android 4.4 UI, there are quite a few KitKat tweaks that’ve made the cut. Those include white status bar icons, a transparent status bar and a transparent app tray. Users will have the option of selecting which system icons will be shown in the status bar, and when the notification shade is pulled down, users can switch between a notification view and Quick Settings menu with tools that can be reordered.

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One interesting feature outed in today’s leak is “What’s New,” which can be accessed by swiping up from the home button just like Google Now. Little is known about the What’s New app right now, but the leaked screenshots make it look like an HTC BlinkFeed/Flipboard-style app with information tiles of varying sizes. The What’s New app also features a widget that can be placed on the user’s home screen.

Overall it looks like Sony’s Android 4.4 user interface offers a nice mix of new features and visual tweaks. I’m sure that many folks will be happy to see that Sony has integrated many of KitKat’s signature features into its own Android overlay, including the white icons and transparent status bar.

Sony is expected to introduce the C6503 Sirius at Mobile World Congress, which is scheduled to take place in Barcelona from Feb. 24 through Feb. 27. The good news is that today’s leak has provided us with enough screenshots of Sony’s Android 4.4 UI to keep us occupied until MWC. Check out more of ‘em at the XperiaBlog link below.

Source: XperiaBlog

Editorial Director of News and Content for PhoneDog Media. Fluent in whisk(e)y, video games and phones. Can be followed on Twitter at @alw.

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  • Richard Yarrell

    I wish Sony well they have such a long way to go.

    • Ryan

      Agreed – This is a mess.

    • SGB101

      I agree, menu looks like touch wiz, yuk.

      • jerrbomb

        I actually agree with r Richard.. Sony needs to take some design cues.. They are severely lacking.. And what’s worse is that even though they are progressing its as if they tried to copy someone

        • www.phonewbie.com

          Everyone is copying. Many of Kit Kat design cues were copied from other “skins.” Google now, Samsung’s new cards and “what’s new” from Sony are all replicas of Blinkfeed. I really don’t consider that bad unless it’s a 100% rip off.

          • squiddy20

            I’m genuinely curious, from your viewpoint, what design cues did Kit Kat take, and from where?

          • www.phonewbie.com

            @squiddy20

            if you long press the homescreen on your Nexus 5, settings, widgets n wallpaper options show up as icons and the homescreens fade to the back and you can cycle through them. Long pressing the homescreen on older devices or even a 2012 Nexus device brings up a box with wallpaper, widgets, etc options. Not sure if HTC did it first but my memory goes to the One X as the first to do that.

            Many skins had a clear status bar so as to take full advantage of the screen. Stock always had a black status bar.

            The little dots on the screen which shows you which homescreen you are currently on were never a part of Stock. I think Samsung made that famous but they might have gotten that from Apple.

            The background of the app laucher always went black when launching it. in fact my Nexus 7 2012 still goes black but my nexus 5 is mostly clear but darkens a little.

            As stated earlier, my opinion is that Google now is designed similar to Blinkfeed.

            There are many more examples of how certain features and designs were taken from the skins of others before Kit Kat. I personally think it is a good thing.

            THIS IS NOT A KNOCK ON THE SOFTWARE. I am happy with my nexus devices. just answering your question. Also, you don’t have a reply button next to your comment.

    • jake

      May want to take a closer look at what Samsung is supposedly doing with its UI. I didn’t know blinkfeed was so popular yet everyone seems to be copying it.

  • CB Sherman is a hero

    That looks hideous!!!!!!!!

  • sere83

    haha, so bad its laughable. Brief went something like:

    ‘Right guys i’m thinking we start by taking stock android and making it look considerably more bland, cheap and ugly’

    The best designed skins all come from china. MIUI and Meizu’s Flyme beat Samsung, LG, Sony and HTC into the ground in terms of graphic design, its actually embarrassing how much better those 2 look.

  • jewel

    nice

  • donger

    Sony can do better.

  • Hasib

    I think sony android is better than anything.