It's being rumoured that Sony will be the next Android manufacturer to provide a Google Edition of its current flagship smartphone, this time the Sony Xperia Z.
According to a "Sony insider who wanted to remain anonymous" speaking to Android Geeks, there will be a third Google Edition device. Apparently, a Sony Xperia Z Google Edition will soon launch, with an announcement expected some time in July.
Like the Samsung Galaxy S4 Google Edition announced at Google I/O in mid-May, and the HTC One Google Edition that was revealed a few weeks later, the Sony Xperia Z will supply familiar hardware with Google's stock Android 4.2 OS on board.
Until recently this stock Android experience was only available through Google-endorsed Nexus devices like the Google Nexus 4 and the Google Nexus 7. However, with no new Nexus device revealed at Google I/O, the onus appears to have shifted to the manufacturers to come up with the goods.
In terms of what the Sony Xperia Z has to offer, we praised its extremely solid built quality (it's both dust and water proof) and sharp 5-inch display, but found its battery life to be somewhat wanting and a disturbing tendency to get very hot.
Here's hoping that the application of Google's stripped-back OS helps address those two criticisms in some capacity.
Otherwise, we're genuinely thrilled by this new collaborative trend. The Sony Xperia Z, Samsung Galaxy S4 and the HTC One are three of the strongest Android devices yet released, each offering a very different design philosophy and top-end performance. Add in arguably the best stock mobile OS in the business and you have three formidable packages.
Of course, the only lingering question for us is whether the Sony Xperia Z Google Edition will ever come to the UK - or leave America at all, for that matter. So far, Google Edition pretty much means US Edition.
Next, find out why the Sony Xperia Z broke our editor's heart.