March 20, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
Yesterday morning, we talked about how Sony had finally begun updating its current generation flagships to Android 4.4.2. But while an official KitKat release is great news, not everyone was lucky enough to receive the update.
As stated by Sony, update availability depends both on region and carrier. And since these rollouts come in stages, not everyone even in those regions that have already received the update will be included in the initial wave. Luckily, the community has stepped up to bring the update to any Xperia Z Ultra, Xperia Z1, and Xperia Z1 Compact device owner looking to update before his or her time.
The FTF files for the Xperia Z1 Compact comes courtesy of XDA Senior Members Jozinek, Darkimmortal, and louis0815. And so far, the extracted firmwares are available for unbranded Czech, unbranded UK, and unbranded German devices.
The goods are also available for the Xperia Z1, with many more regional variants being extracted and mirrored. These are available for commercial/journalist (Bin4ry), unbranded India (DooMLoRD), unbranded France (auras76), unbranded Brazil (RHBH), customized Malaysia (chunlianghere), customized Singapore (chunlianghere), unbranded Canada (PherChe) devices.
As expected, the firmware for all three devices comes in at version 14.3.A.0.681. So pick your poison, and head to the links above to get started.
[Many thanks to Portal Supporter Titokhan for the Z1 Compact link!]
March 19, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
Compared to Motorola, Samsung, and even HTC, it’s not inaccurate to state that Sony’s been a tad bit slow in officially updating its devices to Android 4.4 KitKat. Motorola first updated the Moto X back in November, Samsung followed suit not too long after in January, and even HTC got its feet wet in November and subsequently finished the job yesterday.
But before we start waving around our pitchforks, let’s remember that Sony’s quite developer friendly, and they’ve done much to help aftermarket developers bring KitKat to their devices. Heck, they’ve even released unofficial alpha firmware builds from time to time. Now, however, Sony has started rolling out official Android 4.4 KitKat to its flagship Xperia Z Ultra, Xperia Z1, and Xperia Z1 Compact.
These updates bring quite a few new features, including status bar and quick settings interface tweaks, PlayStation 4-style launch animation and live wallpaper, updated native apps, and Xperia Themes. According to Sony:
- 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…
Perhaps just as exciting as today’s update, Sony laid out a timetable for its next round of updates, as they’ve now stated that the Xperia Z, ZL, ZR, and Tablet Z will also receive the KitKat goods some time in Q2. And finally, Sony also stated that KitKat will also be making its way over to the Xperia T2, E1, and M2 at some point.
Good job Sony in updating your current flagships! Head over to the comments and threads below to get in on the discussion!
February 2, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
Up until very recently, there haven’t been very many flagship-level small devices. Sure we have the S4 Mini and One Mini, but they’re not quite the same as their full-size counterparts. The Sony Xperia Z1 Compact is a very interesting device because it wishes to change this trend.
Packing essentially the same specs as the flagship Xperia Z1, the Z1 Compact brings an extremely high level of performance to the “small” device world, with small being in quotes because it wasn’t all that long ago that a 4.3″ screen was considered gargantuan. Accordingly, we’ve given it a home here on the XDA forums.
In addition to creating a forum for this recently released device, we have good news to share! Sony has released the GPL-required kernel source code for the device, meaning that your favorite aftermarket kernel developers can start cooking up some magic for the device, and true source-built development can begin.
Users looking to get in on the discussion should head over to the newly created Sony Xperia Z1 Compact forum. And if you’re a developer looking to start cooking up some kernel lovin’ for the newly released device, head over to Sony Developer World to get the sauce.
January 24, 2014 By: Jimmy McGee
Android 4.5, or the whatever next version of Android is, could break root app functionality! That and much more news is covered by Jordan, as he reviews all the important stories from this week. Included in this week’s news is the announcement that the Sony Xperia Z1 Compact has been rooted and the release of Paranoid Android 4.0 Beta 3! That’s not all that’s covered in today’s video!
Jordan talks about the other videos released this week on XDA Developer TV. XDA Developer TV Producer TK released an Xposed Tuesday video for SwypeBack, he compared the Omate TrueSmart smartwatch 2.0, the Samsung Galaxy Gear and the Pebble, and he gave us an Review of CyanogenMod on the Oppo N1. Pull up a chair and check out this video.
January 22, 2014 By: Samantha
Unveiled to the world only a bit more than a week ago, one doesn’t know whether to be surprised or not to find out that the Sony Xperia Z1 Compact has already been rooted and can run CWM recovery. This was achieved by none other than XDA Recognized Developer DooMLoRD, who has contributed much to the Xperia development community in the past.
The process does require an unlocked bootloader, and the unlocking process is the same as the one for the Xperia Z1. And unlike what initially happened to the Xperia Z1, unlocking the bootloader on the Z1 Compact will not break the camera. Once the bootloader has been unlocked, you must flash the custom kernel provided via fastboot, and once this is done, CWM recovery can be entered by pressing down the volume up button during start up. Rooting the device is even more simple, requiring one to only to download and flash the latest superSU update.zip through custom recovery and rebooting the device.
To find out more, visit the original thread for more details.