Sony have an interesting relationship with Android. Their devices have a certain, distinctive style, which has been around since early 2013. Sony's Xperia branding was formed around the concept of putting the best compatible components into an Android device, and this is something that the manufacturer's high end models certainly fulfill – but there are of course a number of lesser devices in the model range. Indeed, because Sony update flagship devices every six months, this means that with the recent launch of the Xperia Z5, Sony's portfolio of devices is larger than we would otherwise expect. And for owners of the Xperia Z3 and Z3 Compact, the flagship released around and about this time last year, Sony have updated their Android 6.0 Marshmallow experience software.
The news today follows the launch back in the summer of Sony's Concept for Android initiative, which is essentially a limited user beta test drive designed to allow Xperia users to trial concept software builds for Sony Xperia devices. In this case, owners of the Xperia Z3 and Z3 Compact in a number of countries (these being Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland, Iceland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, United Kingdom, Ireland and Germany) have the opportunity to sign up for the concept program, where 10,000 owners are able to sign up to receive an early build of ANdroid 6.0 Marshmallow for their devices. Sony underestimated the popularity of the restricted beta and the service encountered a number of technical difficulties, which appear to have now been resolved.
Today, Sony have announced better news: the first phase of software downloads are now being released to waiting customers, which means there are a number of Xperia Z3 and Z3 Compact customers out there running Android 6.0 Marshmallow, before many Google Nexus customers have the new version of the software. Sony do caveat this announcement by explaining that the update process will take a number of weeks so if you are already in the scheme but have yet to receive your notification, it is on the way but might take a little time. Sony have promised to keep customers up to date with the changes to the underlying software via their mobile blog. Given the high demand for the pre-release Marshmallow software, Sony have opened up an unknown number of additional spaces in the Concept so that more customers can experiment with the new software on their Xperia Z3 device. Sony's blog highlights the need to move quickly if you are interested, so you'll need to hit up the Sony's Concept for Android application on the Google Play Store.