Sony has always been decent with software updates — for newer devices anyway — but the company loves to release them in batches. Today Sony announced that Android 4.4 updates will be rolling out for the Xperia Z Ultra, Xperia Z1 and Xperia Z1 Compact all at the same time. The rollout should be underway right now, so if you have one of these devices, head to your Settings menu and check for updates!
The KitKat update apparently comes with quite a few changes, changing the user interface to something Sony claims is “neat.” We’ll take its word for it. Here is the list of changes:
- Google’s Android 4.4; KitKat as standard – bringing performance & UI optimisation…
We’ve added our tweaked Status Bar and Quick Settings… now more intuitive and customisable (and pretty easy on the eye)… cleaned up to ensure you only get the notifications you really need
- If you’ve got a Sony PlayStation 4, you might recognize our new user interface – we’ve added the same sleek launch animation and livewallpaper across the lock and home screens
- We’re also uplifting Sony’s entire native app portfolio to the latest versions – bringing tweaked / improved / current experiences for (to name but a few): Messaging, MyXperia, Smart Connect, Small apps, TrackID, TrackID TV, Sony Select, Smart Social Camera and…
- Sony’s Media apps: WALKMAN, Album and Movies, with Sony Entertainment Network cloud service integration* – a more converged and full Sony entertainment experience – Sony Entertainment Network & PlayMemories integration with a more intuitive UI, better download speeds, and more!
- Our unique custom interface experience: “Xperia Themes”, with downloadable UI packs from Sony Select – skin up to 280 assets across your Xperia smartphone with a variety of styles, and more to follow soon…
That’s an impressive list of changes. I especially like the idea of the Xperia Themes. While they were very basic before, I’d love to see how they work now. I’m sure Sony owners will be happy with these changes, so get excited for what seems like a pretty large update!
If your phone was left out, don’t worry too much. Sony is tackling the Xperia Z, Xperia ZL, Xperia Tablet Z and Xperia ZR next. They’ll be getting KitKat starting in mid-Q2. Sometime after that, Android 4.4 will become available for the Xperia T2 Ultra, Xperia E1 and Xperia M2. These devices might not get every single new feature the flagships are getting, but it’s great to see Sony support its older and lower-end devices.
In the world of updates, no one except for Motorola is really considered fast these days. Even the big guys like Samsung and HTC are taking forever with their KitKat updates, especially on carriers. But in comparison to them, Sony is keeping pace and updating several phones at once. We have to give the company props for showing support to its devices. Do you own an Xperia Z Ultra, Z1 or Z1 Compact? If so, did you get the update? Leave a comment!