Japanese veteran company Sony confirmed last week which of their smartphones are going to receive Android 7.0 Nougat update later this year. Unfortunately, the Xperia Z3, which is one of the most popular flagships by the company isn’t on the list. At the time of the announcement, Sony did not reveal why the Xperia Z3 was excluded, but the company surely felt the need to explain its decision.
According to a developer at Sony, Ola Olsson, there are two reasons why Xperia Z3 won’t be getting an official Android 7.0 Nougat update. The first is related to some “unforeseen platform limitations” that could not allow Sony to push the Developer Preview 5 update for the phone.
Since Sony hasn’t been able to deliver that final update for Xperia Z3, apparently, it will not be allowed to upgrade the smartphone to Android 7.0 Nougat even if the company wanted to.
Google updated its CTS (Compatibility Test Suite) requirements right before the Japanese company was able to release Developer Preview 5 for the Xperia Z3. The search giant brought in a requirement that removed a lot of smartphones from the compatibility list. This includes support for Vulkan or OpenGL ES 3.1.
Since Xperia Z3 packs a Snapdragon 801 processor and the Adreno 330 GPU that supports Open GL 3.0 ES only. It is impossible for this it to pass the CTS test. This is the second and the legal reason that prevents the company from providing Xperia Z3 users with the much-awaited Android 7.0 Nougat update.
Because of these reasons, Sony Xperia Z3 will not be the only smartphone that won’t be getting the Nougat update (mostly owing to an older chipset). Many other devices that have Snapdragon 800 and 801 CPUs won’t be able to pass Google’s CTS test.
This news may come as a shock for a lot of users, especially in India, as the market for low and mid budget phone is high. The users of most non-flagship phones may have to wait for about a year before they see the update. It is likely that Google will update their CTC or plans in the near future to suit different market needs. A dynamic market like that of India is highly capable of accepting changes and could prove to be a major platform for first-time launches in the future.