sony xperia z1 review aa 06

There’s a lot to like about the Sony Xperia Z1, including a powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 CPU, a water resistant design and an impressive 20.7MP camera. For Android purists however, the biggest downside is that the device doesn’t run vanilla Android. The handset instead features Sony’s customized UI and special software.

The good news is that you can now enjoy the Xperia Z1’s epic hardware while also experiencing Android as Google envisioned it, all thanks to the efforts of XDA developer DoomLord.

The developer’s new ‘vanilla’ Android ROM is a port of the Z Ultra Google Play Edition’s software, which essentially turns the Z1 into a Google Play Edition handset. The porting effort was possible due to the fact that — despite having different screen sizes and form factors — the Z Ultra and Z1 have similar internals.

So how well does the port work? While it is still an effort in progress, the ROM is reportedly very stable. Unfortunately it does have two issues that could be deal-breakers for many folks: the camera and WiFi aren’t functioning correctly just yet.

On the brightside, the developer has already begun working to address these issues, so hopefully it’s just a matter of time before we have a fully working Z1 GPe ROM. Until then, the ROM is probably not appropriate as a daily driver for most users.

To learn more about the ROM, or to flash it for yourself, you’ll want to head on over to the XDA Developer’s forum. Keep in mind that things can (and sometimes do) go wrong when flashing custom ROMs, so proceed at your own risk.

Andrew Grush
Andrew is one of the three Managing Editors of Android Authority, primarily responsible for the overseeing of US team of writers, in addition to several other projects such as VR Source and more. He loves tech, gaming, his family, and good conversations with like-minded folks.
  • Jack Parker

    So they ported it to the z1 but not the ultra. Makes perfect sense

    • Guest

      seriously, you can get a Z ultra for under $500. . . and I would if there was decent ROM support.

      • YouareAdick

        Bullshit. You are just a whiny little bitch here to start shit and put down anyone who does anything even remotely cool. Maybe if you got your fat useless ass off the couch and read a book then you wouldn’t have to hate others for their work and you could actually be involved you fat ignorant bitch!

        • Guest

          Please tell me Dick, what my reading habits have to do with anything?

          You’re the type do dickhead I would love to meet in real life. . . big man on a computer via the internet and probably the whiniest little cry baby when face to face with anyone.

    • AsakuraZero

      get a ZU for doomlord and he would do it right away, the developers do the ports because they have the phone

    • Guest

      The Ultra already got an official Google play edition

  • raj

    The first thing to do, when you receive a SONY Z Ultra Google Play Edition is, port the ROM to a SONY XPERIA Z Ultra device. All other devices are secondary, people :O :O :O :O

  • gh0st

    hail DoomLord