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Sony seeking beta users for new Android concept software

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Sony Mobile looks set to bring wholesale changes to its Xperia UI as part of a new initiative dubbed “Sony’s Android concept”. Judging by the language used in its website, the program is designed to offers users the “opportunity to trial a new concept Android software build for [the] Xperia Z3“.

The program is limited to users in Sweden and the website clearly states that it allows users to “Enjoy a new user experience” before adding that users will “receive a concept Sony Android software version, with a fresh take on the Sony user experience“. Naturally the company hasn’t revealed any details about the concept software (other than, you know, that it’s a concept build) but based on the website, it looks like Sony’s Xperia UI could get its first major overhaul in several generations.

Over the past few years, Sony’s software and hardware have both followed similar patterns with small incremental upgrades to hardware matched with small tweaks and revisions to refine the software experience. Despite being one of the most refined interfaces on Android, the Xperia UI doesn’t have all the bells and whistles found in its rival’s interfaces and as such, the new concept Android software could become the new Xperia UI.

Xperia Z3 range in video:

Sony opening the pilot to a limited number of users in Sweden – where its R&D department is incidentally, although the workforce there is rapidly diminishing – suggests that the software is in beta stage (and not alpha) and this could be telling, given the many many rumours that Sony will introduce an entirely new handset at IFA 2015 in just over six weeks.

Given some users have suggested that Sony needs to re-evaluate its product strategy, the concept Android software could be the first step towards an entirely refined and redesigned smartphone experience. In most industries, change is a bad thing but mobile tech is the opposite and the lack of major changes in Sony’s hardware and software has been one of the biggest criticism leveraged against the company. Could the concept Android software be the answer to this?

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