Sony has a history of announcing a shiny new smartphone, and then it vanishing for months, before pre-orders open and it is available to purchase. The company has gotten better at opening pre-orders much quicker. This is particularly true with a US release.
Like with the Xperia 5 II announced today, the pre-orders are opening two weeks from now. Which is honestly when the phone should be launching, not the pre-orders. But it's better than waiting a few months for them.
But something that caught our eye, at least for the US market, is the fact that the pre-orders start on September 29, but it won't be available until December 4. That's 65 days after pre-orders open. Normally, pre-orders are for a week or two, sometimes a month. But with the Xperia 5 II, it's over two months for the US release.
So we talked to Sony to find out the real reason behind the long wait time between the pre-orders and the launch date. And well, you probably aren't surprised.
Carriers are to blame for the long wait time
Even though the Xperia 5 II is not being sold through any of the US carriers, they are still causing delays for the Xperia 5 II.
Sony told AndroidHeadlines that the reason for the long wait time between the pre-order date (September 29) and the launch date (December 4) is due to the network certification finalization in the US.
Basically what this means is that Sony needs to get the phone certified for each network – AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon – before it can launch in the US. They could technically launch without it, but that would leave a very bad experience for their users. As that would mean no 4G LTE support in the US. And considering this 5G phone already doesn't have 5G in the US, that's a big problem.
Unfortunately, it's not like the old days. Where you could just toss in a SIM card in an unlocked phone and it worked automatically. Manufacturers need to work with these carriers to get their phone certified on their network.
While it sounds like carriers are being heavy-handed here, this is actually a good thing. You see, the carriers don't want a phone that is compatible with their network that doesn't work properly or gives their customers a bad experience. As those customers will still call Verizon for help, instead of Sony. They also don't want phones to connect that possibly not configured properly and cause issues on their network.
It's annoying that this needs to happen, but it's for the good of these wireless networks.
But for those that are looking to purchase the Xperia 5 II, it looks like you'll have to wait a bit for it to actually release in the US.