updated 03:21 pm EDT, Sat June 8, 2013
Xperia Z variant will sport Nexus-like user experience
Hot on the heels of similar announcements for the HTC One and Samsung's Galaxy S4, Sony is now said to be planning a "Google Experience" version of its own flagship handset, the Xperia Z. Late this week, reports emerged that the Japanese tech giant, which has lagged Apple, Samsung, and others in the smartphone segment, will soon debut a vanilla Android version of the Xperia Z. Sony's late joining of the "Google Experience" runs counter to some observers' expectations, since the company typically is more open to participating in the Android Open Source Project than are any of its competitors.
Reports of a stock Android Xperia Z first surfaced on Romanian site AndroidGeeks, with Android Central later confirming the story with knowledgeable sources. The reports, though, carried no word on when such a device might see release, and it may only be available in the United States.
The Google Edition version of the Xperia Z will likely see faster system updates, as it will not have to have the OS customization that the standard Xperia Z bears. The addition of Sony to the pool of Google Edition manufacturers means that all of the top four Android manufacturers -- if one includes LG's Nexus 4 -- will offer at least one handset that bears no software customization.