September 30, 2014
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sony xperia z3 first impressions aa (8 of 17)

Sony has been one of the more developer friendly OEMs over the past few years, opening up its bootloaders, kernel source code, and driver binaries to aid others in the development of custom ROMs and the like. The company looks set to take its relationship with the custom ROM community one step further, but providing stock Android (AOSP) ROMs for its major smartphones in the future.

Back in June, Alin Jerpelea from CyanogenMod’s FreeXperia team joined Sony’s Developer Program, and he has been giving a talk at the XDA Devcon this week about where Sony will be taking ROM support in the future. The key takeaway is that there is a major possibility of Sony offering officially supported AOSP ROMs for its popular smartphones.

However, Jerpelea will be working solo on any future ROM project, meaning that development is likely to be gradual and limited to a number of handsets. Flagship smartphones are the most likely to receive direct support, although ASOP-ROMs from Sony are already available for the Xperia L, Z, ZL, S, and Tablet Z.

Additional support will clearly be helpful for all of the AOSP based ROMs out there, that are based on Sony handsets. The benefit for Sony is that the growing ROM community could be more likely to adopt its handsets over the less developer friendly OEMS.

With the front for Google Play Edition smartphones quieting down lately, Sony is putting itself in a unique position. Do you think that a greater number of hardware manufacturers should provide customers with a choice between stock and OEM versions of Android?

Robert Triggs
Lead Technical Writer at Android Authority, covering the latest trends in consumer electronics and hardware. In his spare moments, you'll probably find him tinkering with audio electronics and programming.
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