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Sony Xperia S to get De Facto Nexus Status

Jean-Baptiste Queru, Google's top Android Open-Source Tech Dude (well, actually Technical Lead of Google's Android Open Source Project) announced on Google Groups that the Sony Xperia S will be getting updates directly from Google.

Quere said "For a new challenge, I'd like to try to go one step further, and to target some hardware beyond the usual categories. I've added a git project for the Sony LT26, i.e. Xperia S. This seems like a good target: it's a powerful current GSM device, with an unlockable bootloader, from a manufacturer that has always been very friendly to AOSP."

The Sony Xperia S was an interesting device. It had a 4.3-inch 720p display in a market of Android flagship phones with larger 4.7 to 4.8-inch 720p displays. The only spoiler in the package, is that while its competitors came with new for 2012 chipsets, the Nvidia Tegra 3, Qualcomm S4 and Samsung Exynos Quad, the Xperia S came with a dual core Qualcomm S3 which we first saw in the HTC Sensation back in the first half of 2011. All-in-all, the Xperia S is like a sleek car with a mediocre engine under the hood. Still, Sony did a good job with the Qualcomm S3, squeezing out more performance from the chipset than any other OEM ever did. 

All of a sudden, the Sony Xperia S looks a lot more interesting. Priced substantially lower than its competitors, being a "mid-sized" offering and now with updates direct from Google's AOSP team. Even more interesting, it looks like the Xperia S will become the platform for a Google Skunkworks project for the creation of the next iteration of Android.

"Contributions are strongly encouraged, and there should be more freedom than usual to submit experimental changes since that won't impact the devices that Google is most directly involved in," Quere said.  

So, the somewhat boring Sony Xperia S, might now become transformed as the home of the latest cutting edge Android code.


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