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Sony’s Lollipop Update Does not include the RAW Camera Settings that Google included

March 16, 2015 - Written By Alexander Maxham

One of the bigger features for camera enthusiasts in Android 5.x Lollipop, is the fact that you can shoot raw on your smartphone. Basically what shooting RAW means is that you’re just shooting the picture. There’s no processing done at all by the device. Thus, you’re getting a much larger picture. The update also doesn’t give you manual white balance, manual ISO, and manual shutter speed. And this is all supported by Google’s newer Camera API which was introduced in Lollipop.

So why did Sony decide to forgo these features in the Android 5.0 update? Well likely because they already offer these features in their camera app, and didn’t see a need to rewrite their camera app or duplicate the features. Which makes sense, especially when you talk about the “average consumer”. We’ll likely see it handled a bit better in the Xperia Z4 which is due to be announced a bit later on down the road. Sony does still have one of the best cameras and camera apps on the Xperia Z3, so this shouldn’t be a big deal for most people anyways.

The Android 5.0.2 Lollipop update is beginning to roll out to the Xperia Z3 and Z3 Compact in some regions. However the US isn’t one of them just yet. So we’re still waiting on our update. Hopefully we’ll have it soon. However we did get hands on with it at Mobile World Congress on the Xperia M4 Aqua and the Xperia Z4 Tablet. Sony has done a pretty good job with Lollipop, it looks very similar to stock Android, with a few changes in colors. Which is pretty cool.

So no RAW support on Android 5.0.2 Lollipop for the Xperia lineup. Sucks for those that really want it, and will use it. But I have a feeling that most people won’t use it, especially with the limited space on smartphones. On the other hand, you can also head into the Play Store and find an app that supports shooting in RAW. How many of you are bummed by this decision by Sony? Let us know in the comments down below.