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TWRP Recovery Now Available for the Xperia U, P, Go, and Sola

Posted by wicked March - 27 - 2014 - Thursday Comments Off

Sony-Xperia-P-Xperia-U-Xperia-Go-And-Xperia-Sola

The importance of an aftermarket recovery is undeniable. These amazing tools make various tasks easy, and allow users to flash various modifications, as well as create Nandroid backups that save us when we get the bootloop blues. Recoveries are also needed to easily flash a ROM. Because of this, you can pretty much find one or more custom recovery for every device with a forum here.

The most popular recoveries around are ClockworkMod Recovery, PhilZ Recovery, and Team Win Recovery Project. TWRP was recently ported to NovaThor SoC Sony Xperias: P, U, Go and Sola. The user responsible for the porting is XDA Senior Member NoobCoder.

The recovery is distributed in a rather interesting way, as a script splits the boot.img, extracts the ramdisk, adds the recovery, re-packs the ramdisk, and creates a new boot.img. Because of this, it can be used with every kernel available. Of course, the recovery might be also used on locked bootloader devices, but that requires some skills and various modifications to system files.

The recoveries can be found in their respective threads for the Xperia P, Xperia U, Xperia Go and Xperia Sola, so if you have one of these device give OperRecovery a try.

[Big thanks to XDA Senior Member cpkunki for the tip!]

Full Screen Call Experience for the Sony Xperia P, U, and Sola

Posted by wicked February - 5 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

XP Full4

If an Android user in search of a full-screen call experience, a wide range of Android apps are available to accomplish this goal. Many of them are perfectly capable of providing a great alternative to the stock call screens OEMs have on their devices. Despite this, many would rather retain the native look of their applications instead of replacing them with something out of place.

If you find yourself with such a preference and a Sony Xperia P, U, or Sola in hand, you may want to check out XDA Senior Member Rajeev’s full screen caller mod. Compatible only with Android 4.1.2, the mod allows you to retain the original Sony look, but with the added benefit of a full screen contact image. And because this is a mod of a native app, you can crop the image with the ‘Album’ app.

The mod comes in 6 different variants, four of which are combinations of different colors of the UI, and the other two having the additional features of call recording, disabling the ‘data disabled/enabled’ notification, and using only 2G. Rajeev has also provided a separate patch for the first four variants providing these features if one wishes to have them.

To find out more about the Full Screen Caller mod, check out the original thread for more information.

Sony retires several two-year old Xperia smartphones

Posted by wicked February - 5 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

It shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that Sony is now ending official software upgrades for several of its older Xperia models. But owners of some of these devices need not despair as there is some light at the end of their tunnel, though not coming from Sony itself.

The list of devices is quite a long one. So far it includes the Xperia arc S, Xperia S, Xperia SL, Xperia ion, Xperia acro S, Xperia go, Xperia P, Xperia J, Xperia miro, Xperia sola, Xperia tipo, and Xperia U. Some of these devices, like the Xperia U and Xperia P, were announced way back in early 2012 while others average at 18 months. They’ve had quite a good run as far as software updates go, with some even trekking three Android generations.

That’s not to say that Sony immediately abonded these devices. In August last year, the company rolled out Android 4.1 for the Xperia S, Xperia SL, and Xperia acro S, bringing those devices into the Jelly Bean age. Other have not been that lucky but nevertheless did receive some amount of updates. Sony has updated the official software support pages for these devices, so if you own any one of them, it might be a good idea to check how far Sony will be taking your smartphone in terms of upgrades.

But as mentioned, there is a way out, at least for some of these. That is if owners are willing to risk going through a flashing process. Some models, particularly the Xperia go, Xperia P, Xperia sola, and Xperia U just received an unofficial port of CyanogenMod 11 in November last year. While this is definitely not an officially supported route, either by Sony and even by CyanogenMod, this at least gives those devices a chance at a life with Android 4.4.

VIA: Xperia Blog

Sony kills software support for Xperia S, P, U, and others

Posted by wicked February - 4 - 2014 - Tuesday Comments Off

Sony Xperia U

As many of you know, Android handsets only have a finite amount of time until software updates are eventually dropped. To be fair to the manufacturers, it’s tough to offer long term software support due to the sheer number of new devices released each year, but the news always comes as a disappointment.

Today Sony Mobile has compiled a rather long list of devices that will no longer be receiving official software updates. The smartphones in question range in age from about a year and a half to two years old, which is pretty much the typical lifespan of most Android handsets, although two years is still arguably a little short.

The list of devices which will “not receive any further software upgrade support” includes the following models: Xperia arc S, Xperia S, Xperia SL, Xperia ion, Xperia acro S, Xperia go, Xperia P, Xperia J, Xperia miro, Xperia sola, Xperia tipo and Xperia U.

No doubt this is disappointing news for some of you out there, but on the plus side it’s nice to know that Sony is being upfront about future device support. There are plenty of cases where consumers have been patiently waiting for updates which never materialised.

How do you feel about Android software support, should manufacturers be expected to continually push out updates for old handsets, or is short term support a small price to pay for more regular hardware refreshes?


    







Alpha CM11 KitKat Builds Available for the Sony Xperia P

Posted by wicked November - 16 - 2013 - Saturday Comments Off

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The Sony Xperia P is one of many mid-range devices released by Sony in 2012. Its relatively good specifications (ST-Ericsson NovaThor U8500 1GHz, 1 GB RAM, 16 GB internal storage) and low price made it quite successful in terms of user adoption. Initially, it was released with Android 2.3 Gingerbread, but after few months, the phone was updated to Ice Cream Sandwich and then support was dropped.

Just a few days ago, we wrote about KitKat ported to Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini–the first device running ST-Ericsson NovaThor SoC. As most of you know, this chip is not the easiest to work with, and the  fact that the company doesn’t exist now only makes things worse.  Despite those difficulties, XDA Recognized Contributor percy_g2 and Recognized Developer Munjeni made the first Android 4.4 KitKat port for Sony Xperia P.

The build is quite early and is still described as alpha. It’s not yet fully functional, as SystemUI crashes at times and there are some bugs here and there. However, we should consider percy’s work as a great achievement, and it’s just a matter of time to have a relatively stable build of CyanogenMod 11 on this device.

If you are interested to see how KitKat is working on Xperia P, visit the ROM thread and try out the newest nightly.

Play Full Game Mods for the Xperia U, P, Sola, Go

Posted by wicked December - 12 - 2012 - Wednesday Comments Off

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As gaming becomes more popular on Android, developers are doing their part to make gaming more fun. Whether it’s connecting familiar controllers to faking PlayStation certification, the effort to make gaming more universal is there. Now, there is a gaming mod for a plethora of Xperia devices, including the Sony Xperia U, P, Sola, and GO.

XDA Senior Member GEKTHEBOSS released a tweak that makes gaming a little more fun for the aforementioned Xperia devices. The package doesn’t contain a lot of mods, but the mods included give users access to a lot of games. The features include:

*Full PlayStationMobile Certification
*Full Xperia Play PlayStation Certification
*Xperia Play Game Launcher

In addition, recent updates have added optimizations and an uninstaller. To install, users download the mod and install it via custom recovery. If it doesn’t quite work, fixing permissions is the accepted troubleshooting method. Several users have confirmed that the mod works on a few different devices. Some users on the Xperia GO have expressed that they’re having issues, but upcoming updates should sort that out.

If this looks like something you want to check out, go to the original thread.

Sony dips Xperia P in gold, makes it the best luxury smartphone ever

Posted by wicked November - 26 - 2012 - Monday Comments Off

Xperia P
Luxury phones seem to have a stigma of being mid range at best. Luxury car dealers like Aston Martin make cars worth hundreds of thousands of dollars that sit on the bleeding edge of vehicular technology. Then they release smartphones for thousands of dollars that aren’t so great. Sony has done the same with the Xperia P.

As Engadget points out, there are better smartphones in the Sony lineup that could’ve gotten dipped in gold. Why they went with the Xperia P is anyone’s guess.

In case you’re not familiar, the Xperia P isn’t the worst smartphone out there. It sports a dual core, 1GHz processor, 1GB RAM, and 16GB of storage. It is pretty mid range compared to today’s standards.

So this gold plated Xperia P is the best luxury phone out there?

It may not seem like it, but it really is. When compared to luxury offerings like the Aston Martin phone mentioned above, it’s a veritable Porshe. After all, the Aston Martin phone rocks an 800MHz, single core processor and a whopping 256MB of RAM. We would’ve compared it to a Lamborghini, but their offering wasn’t much better than Aston Martin’s.

Compared to the competition, the Xperia P is a rock star. Unfortunately, these will never go on sale. According to the Sony Mobile’s blog, only 15 were made and they’re likely being given away on their Facebook page.

Was this a good move by Sony, or should they have gone with a better phone than the Xperia P? Let us know!

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Easily Fix Sony Xperia P Battery Drain Issue

Posted by wicked November - 18 - 2012 - Sunday Comments Off

Improve Sony Xperia P Battery Life

For most smartphone users, battery life is a key concern. As devices become more and more powerful, the need to conserve battery increases since battery technology itself isn’t evolving at the same pace. That’s why people are always on the lookout for battery saving tips. If you’ve got a Sony Xperia P and have noticed it consuming significant amounts of battery while idling, we’ve got a simple tip for you that may help you get some more juice out of your battery with little effort.

When XDA Member PGTomsk was tired of experiencing up to 20% battery drain overnight at idle, so he tried looking for solutions. By trial and error, he stumbled across the most simplest of solutions. It seems the stock Weather widget was the culprit, and removing it resulted in just under 5% of battery drain overnight.

You can visit the forum thread to read up further on it or join the discussion.



WebView Brings Small App Web Browsing for Some Xperia Devices

Posted by wicked November - 16 - 2012 - Friday Comments Off

XperiaWebView

Sony has done some interesting work with their Xperia devices. One of the more interesting software features they’ve begun implementing comes in the form of Small Apps. Small Apps are essentially floating window applications that open like windows on your computer. It’s similar to Galaxy Note 2 multi window feature. Now, some third party developers have gotten into Small Apps have released their own.

XDA Senior Member hhlong89 posted an application called WebView. It’s an Xperia Small App and also a web browser. It opens up a web browser in a Small Apps window, and lets users browse the web. It’s not too much different from regular Android web browsers, except the floating window feature. A full list of features include:

Share URL from Intent
Can Use Default Browser
(※↑Not Working When You Aleady Set another app)
Long press maxmize button go to Setting Activity
Long press home button to browser reload
Long press open with browser button(left bottpm) to show input form

In addition, some copy/paste functions don’t work and the pulldownlist doesn’t work. The app has been confirmed working on pretty much every Xperia device that can run Small Apps. Now that third party developers are digging into Small Apps, users may see more on the horizon.

For additional details, check out the original thread.



Sony Xperia T, TX, V Jelly Bean upgrades coming in Q1 2013, other handsets also mentioned

Posted by wicked October - 19 - 2012 - Friday Comments Off

Sony has some interesting plans regarding its smartphone future, but issuing timely Android updates are not part of them. The company has shared more details about its Android 4.1 Jelly Bean roll out, but in case you don’t own one of the recently launched Xperia models you won’t like what we’re about to tell you.

The lists of Jelly Bean-upgradeable Xperia devices includes only the following models:

We don’t have any actual Jelly Bean roll out details for either model, but it looks like the most recent Xperia devices – the Xperia T, TX and V – will be the first to get their Android 4.1 update. That will happen at some point in the first quarter of 2013.

In case you own 2011 Sony Android smartphones, you won’t receive any official Jelly Bean upgrade next year, so you’ll either have to stick it out with Ice Cream Sandwich, or find custom Jelly Bean-based ROMs to install on those Xperia models:

We were glad to provide the Android 4.0.4 upgrade for our 2011 Xperia portfolio across most markets and the majority of models but, after thorough evaluation, we have concluded they will not be upgraded beyond Ice Cream Sandwich.

Beyond Ice Cream Sandwich we would not able to guarantee owners of these smartphones the user experience you expect and we demand. We will however, continue to support all these products with firmware maintenance releases.

We’ll be back with more Jelly Bean upgrade details once Sony starts releasing the update.

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