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A stock Android Sony Xperia Z too?

5

It seems stock Android is a hot commodity these days. Following in the footsteps of the HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4, Sony's Xperia Z may be the next flagship phone to come in a "pure" Android version, giving users the option of getting all that Sony hardware without manufacturer software restrictions.

Android Central claims it can confirm a "Google Edition" of the Xperia Z handset is on the way, and will be sold through the Google Play store in the U.S. later this year, as will both the stock Android versions of the HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4.

If the Xperia Z follows suit, getting a "Google Edition" of the device will cost you: the HTC One will be available with stock Android for $599 and the pure Android S4 will ring in at $649. We can expect all three devices to run Android 4.2.2 and receive updates directly from Google instead of relying on carriers or manufacturers to push through new versions of the software.

Comments

Total comments: 5
sadwitch
By sadwitch (Jun 9, 2013)

That's great news. I bought the nexus 4 for its 'pure' form too.

0 upvotes
Reg Natarajan
By Reg Natarajan (Jun 8, 2013)

I've only purchased Nexus phones for this exact reason. Removing this layer of manufacturer's software that I do not want or need is a huge step forward.

2 upvotes
xarcex
By xarcex (Jun 7, 2013)

Great news!

A very solid phone, running a very solid OS. This time, perhaps Google's realised people don't want OEM skins on top of Android. In my very personal opinion, the only skin (read OEM's specific software functionalities) that really upgrades the phone's performance is Sense (Zoe, anyone?) but the rest are just sluggish.

The thing I still don't get is why these phones aren't part of the Nexus line of products, but a "Google Edition" instead. Oh well...

Have a great weekend guys!

0 upvotes
Azurael
By Azurael (Jun 7, 2013)

Because Nexus devices are made for, and apparently have some design input from Google whereas these are devices which are already available at retail with vanilla android pre-installed. A Nexus 4 is far more distinct from an Optimus G despite being the same hardware than a Samsung S4 running TouchWiz vs. an S4 running AOSP.

As nice as it is to see the device manufacturers acknowledge that some people like to use the hardware they buy in the way they choose, I fear that this is a double-edged sword and will result in even more heavy-handed bootloader locks on 'branded' devices meaning those who pay for their devices via contracts as the model tends to go in Europe will be stuck with whatever their operator delivers (which is often bloatware laden and several months behind the manufacturer's releases.)

If I'm right, this could be terrible news as it essentially means anybody who doesn't want a (modestly priced) Nexus device will have to pay a 'vanilla Android tax'.

0 upvotes
xarcex
By xarcex (Jun 7, 2013)

You're right about Google's involvement in designing Nexus devices, I hadn't thought about that.

And about the heavy handed bootloader locks, I feel you but those locks are implemented by the OEMs. I didn't want to root my first Android phone as I was scared of voiding my warranty with the carrier and manufacturer, but I was tired of always having dated versions of the OS so I did it, this was a few years ago though... Jellybean installed on 33% of active devices and Google releasing almost a handful of "Google Edition" devices makes me think that this could become a trend that other OEMs could adopt even for low/mid range devices. Android could have a lot of growth if this happened and I feel like Google is already testing this with these devices.

But who knows, let us wait and see what happens.

0 upvotes
Total comments: 5
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