Sony Ericsson has announced that all the Android smartphones it released this year will be getting upgrades to Android OS 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich). The only one of these widely available in the U.S. is the gaming-oriented Sony Ericsson Xperia PLAY.
A note on the company's blog says, "We can today confirm that we plan to upgrade the entire 2011 Xperia portfolio to the next version of Android known as Android 4.0 or Ice Cream Sandwich. We are working on merging our current Xperia experience with the new features in Android 4.0. More detailed information regarding this upgrade, timing and global availability will be communicated in due course."
Sony Ericsson then listed all the devices it is refering to: Xperia arc and arc S, Xperia PLAY, Xperia neo and neo V, Xperia mini and mini pro, Xperia pro, Xperia active, Xperia ray as well as Sony Ericsson Live with Walkman.
As mentioned earlier, the only one of these that was picked up by as U.S. carrier is the Xperia PLAY, which is available from both Verizon and AT&T.
More about Android OS 4.0 ICS
Google took the wraps off the next version of Android last month, but it has not yet been released. More recently, HTC, Samsung, and others have begin to list the devices that will be getting upgrades.
The user interface in Android ICS brings in elements from both the previous versions for smartphones and tablets. Devices designed to run it won't have physical buttons on their front, as these have been made part of the software's user interface. Current devices, such as the Xperia PLAY, will have both physical and on-screen Home, Back, an Menu buttons when they have been upgraded.
Many of the bundled apps have been improved in Android ICS as well, and new features have been added, such as Face Lock, which can unlock a device using a front-facing camera.