Will my Sony Xperia smartphone be updated to Android Oreo (version 8.0), when can I expect my handset to receive the update and how do I download and install Android Oreo? Here's our complete guide to upgrading your Xperia mobile to the latest version of Google's mobile OS.
Sony's Xperia devices come packing the Android operating system, tweaked and polished by Sony to add some of its own custom software and the Unified Design theming. The result is a slick user experience, packed with some great media features and the ability to stream PS4 games to the small screen.
So far Sony Mobile has been pretty good at pushing out updates for existing Xperia handsets, to fix any issues as well as roll out new features. These updates also often bump up Android to the latest version, including any new functionality that Google has worked on.
The latest version of Android, dubbed Android Oreo or v8.0, is already in beta testing and should be rolling out to mobiles from late 2017. Question is, which Sony Xperia phones will receive an update to Android Oreo, when will this update arrive and how do you actually download and install the software package?
Read next: A full history of Android OS
What is Android Oreo?
Android Oreo is the latest version of Google’s Android OS, which is due to be released towards the end of 2017.
Android Oreo was launched back in March, although we didn't know much about this all-new update until the Google I/O conference, which took place in May. Here Google revealed the latest features and updates which we can expect from Android Oreo, which is a significant step up from Android Nougat in many ways.
For a start, this update brings some cool front-facing features including a picture-in-picture mode, for watching video at the same time as using other apps. However, most of the changes will occur behind the scenes, to improve the overall Android experience.
We've compiled a list of the best Android Oreo features, so you can see exactly why you should consider updating your Xperia to the latest version of Google's OS. If you need more convincing, have a wander over to our full Android Oreo beta review, which covers version 8.0 more in-depth.
Which Sony Xperia phones will be upgraded to Android Oreo?
According to a Sony source, reported in gazyekichi.com, the following Xperia phones are guaranteed to be updated to Android Oreo (or 'Android 8.0', as the version number dictates).
- Sony Xperia XZ Premium
- Sony Xperia XZS
- Sony Xperia XA1
- Sony Xperia L1
- Sony Xperia X Compact
- Sony Xperia XZ
- Sony Xperia X Performance
- Sony Xperia X
- Sony Xperia XA1 Ultra
That's pretty much the full list of phones we'd expect to receive the update, with only a couple of notable omissions. Looks like it's end of the line for the Xperia Z5 family, consisting of the standard Z5, the Xperia Z5 Compact and the Xperia Z5 Premium. That last one is a surprise, as it's one of only two 4K-capable mobiles around right now (the other being the XZ Premium).
That said, these mobiles are about to hit their second birthday, so it's not too huge a surprise that they've been dismissed. Plus, we're happy to see the budget-friendly Xperia L1 get the nod.
Can I try out the Android Oreo beta on my Sony Xperia mobile?
Sadly not. Only Google's own handsets can download and install the Android Oreo beta. In other words, the Google Pixel and Pixel XL can be used to test the beta, while smartphones from Sony, Samsung, HTC and other manufacturers aren't compatible.
That means you'll need to wait for Sony to roll out the official Android Oreo update, complete with its own tweaks, before you can get version 8.0 on your Xperia phone.
When will the Android Oreo update hit my Xperia smartphone?
Right now we don't have a scheduled rollout from Google for Android Oreo. However, we do know that it will first be publically available on the new Pixel 2 and Pixel XL 2 handsets. These are expected to launch in October 2017, so there isn't long to wait in that regards.
However, even once Sony receives the Android Oreo code to update its own handsets, some tinkering will be needed. After all, Xperia phones boast that Unified Design theming and lots of bonus features such as Remote Play, which will require extra code and some thorough testing before rollout commences.
Once Sony has integrated its own features into Android Oreo, the rollout to existing Xperias will begin. This is likely to be a staggered upgrade, so you can expect a small number of phones to receive the update first. Once it's confirmed that there are no issues or bugs, the new Android 8.0 package will be sent out to every other handset.
Of course, other factors need to be taken into consideration, in terms of timing of the Android Oreo rollout. Which network provider you're with and which country you reside in could both have an impact, for instance.
That said, it's easy enough to estimate when your Xperia will be updated. We'd expect the first set of phones to be upgraded to Android Oreo around December 2017, to match when the Xperia XZ and other Sony devices received the Android Nougat update last year.
When we have a more detailed schedule, we'll add it in here.
How do I update my Xperia handset?
Your Sony Xperia phone receives crucial updates over-the-air (OTA). This means that your network provider will actually beam these software packages to your phone.
You should receive a notification when a new update is detected, which you can then download and install on your phone. However, we recommend connecting to a WiFi network before doing so, as a full OS upgrade will eat up a lot of mobile data otherwise.
You can also manually check for such updates by heading to your Xperia phone's settings menu and scrolling to the updates section. This will scan to see if anything is waiting. Check out our complete guide to updating your Android phone for full instructions.