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Sony Reveals Xperia Theme Details, UI Customization for Xperia Phones

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The ease of personalization has long been one of the Android platform’s most attractive features. In particular, theming – re-skinning portions of Android’s UI – has been popular practically since the dawn of Eclair. Unfortunately, though, the process isn’t necessarily straightforward, and relatively few devices from major manufacturers have supported such customization out of the box.

Challenging convention, Sony’s embracing Android’s openness with the release of Xperia Themes. According to the Sony Mobile blog, the new app will ship with the 4.3 Jelly Bean upgrade for eligible Xperia devices. 

Individual themes will be made available for download from Google Play and Sony Select, and have the potential to modify almost all of your Xperia’s software aesthetics. Up to 280 assets can be re-skinned, including the navigation bar, icons, folders, checkboxes, switches, sliders and buttons. Even finer-grain controls are apparently in the pipeline.

Some overseas users have already received the update with Xperia Themes, but hopefully the US upgrades aren’t too far behind.

Via: Sony Mobile
  • Plazmic Flame

    would be nice to have a “stock” theme

  • ferdesmannen

    Z1 Compact has this feature already (in Europe).

  • Jason Melling

    Wow, nice one Sony. Can never have to many customization options, especially for default launchers.

  • Daniel Walsh

    Awesome.

  • Brandon Dean

    the xperia z1s at on tmobile already has this feature. it’s pretty nice how much it can change the look of the UI and I’m looking forward to seeing it get wider release so that there will be more themes available.

  • Cael

    They still have the hideous text message icon though…

  • Silky Johnson

    It would be pretty sweet if one of the themes was to make it look like stock kitkat, navbar and all

    • Brandon Dean

      Its definitely possible.

  • Art

    The Z1s has this feature; its pretty cool. Some of the themes change the entire navbar to match the theme

  • Abhijeet Mishra

    I loved what Nokia had on Symbian though. Full support for themes, and the theme creator program on PC was simple to use for everyone. About time someone does the same, good to see Sony taking the initiative, and that too at a time when I bought a Sony phone for the first time, hah.

  • Ryan Callihan

    Wow I love this. What really got me was the ability to change the design of the nav bar. All without rooting. This is awesome

  • http://brgulker.wordpress.com/ brgulker

    Fantastic! Never owned a Sony device, but this seems like a no-brainer for other OEMs to follower suit.

  • Zach B.

    Skinned Android or not, this is kinda cool. I’ve been impressed with Sony lately.

  • greyhulk

    Isn’t 4.3 already on the Z1 and Z Ultra? So, shouldn’t they technically already have this?

  • Daniel

    Nice to see this in an OEM launcher after all these years with ADW and Go Launcher themes, etc

  • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

    Guys, when are we getting some hands-on time with the Z2 on here? And is there a a date for the phone/unlocked in the US?

    • Brandon Dean

      haven’t you read the memo? Droid life does not bother with any Sony phone. if its not Motorola or HTC or Samsung you might as well not exist.

  • Justin Foster

    This should be in Android 4.5

  • T4rd

    They need to announce the friggin Z2 on all US carriers.

    • K

      Hopefully. Curious, which was the last Sony device to launch on Verizon? Only one I can think of off the top of my head is the Xperia Play.

      • T4rd

        Yeah, the Xperia Play was the last Sony smart phone on Verizon that I know of too. I was about to buy one when it launched, but the limited storage (less than 512 MBs usable internal storage), no LTE, and 512 MBs of RAM were pretty disappointing even for its time. Since then, I think AT&T and T-Mobile are the only carriers that have got decent Sony phones.

    • Miguel

      And then leak the Nexus 6 with that body.

    • LiterofCola

      Yesss.

  • JBartcaps

    A built-in Themer, nice

  • Abhijeet Mishra

    Ah, finally some details on this. It’s been part of the feature list of the 4.3 update for months now, but with “more on this soon” when it came to details. Already know what this is, and it’s great to see the manufacturer with the best-looking UI (in my opinion, didn’t think so at first, but then I got an Xperia Z1) is the one offering such a feature.