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Sony releases Android N Preview for 2014's Xperia Z3

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Sony Xperia Z3+ 53

No, you’re not reading the headline wrong: Sony really has released an Android N Preview for 2014’s Sony Xperia Z3.

The up-to-date software is available to download right now from Google’s Android developer page, and can be flashed to the Xperia Z3 from today – more on that later.

Android N is still a developer build for now, so expect bugs a-plenty, but this is great news for Xperia Z3 owners.

Prior to Sony’s announcement, Android N was only supported on the following Google-made devices: Nexus 6, Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, Nexus 9, and the Pixel C. It also works on Android One handsets too.

Confusingly, the Android N preview isn’t actually available on newer Sony handsets like the Xperia Z5 or Xperia X. It’s also not clear whether the Xperia Z3 will get the actual Android N release when it arrives later this year.

Sony Xperia Z3+ 27The Sony Xperia Z3

Android N is the codename of Google’s next major release for its mobile operating system. The developer preview was first released on March 9, 2016.

Improvements include a split-screen, multi-window mode, a free-form window mode, a redesigned notification pull-down, and notification bundling. There’s also a new Data Saver mode that restricts background mobile data usage.

“Now you can get your apps ready for Android N using Xperia Z3,” writes Sony. “Sony is working with Google to bring you the N Developer Preview on selected Xperia Z3 devices.”

Related: Best Android Apps 2016

How to flash Xperia Z3 Android N Developer Preview

Here are Sony’s steps to flashing your compatible Xperia Z3 device with the Android N Developer Preview:

  • Connect your compatible Z3 device to a computer with a USB cable
  • Xperia companion will open automatically
  • Make sure you have Xperia Companion version 1.1.24 or later. If not, download the latest version from here
  • Hold down the ALT key on your computer and click on Software repair on the home screen, then follow the guide
  • You’ll be asked to disconnect and turn off your device, then to reconnect whilst holding down the volume down key to start the software flashing
  • You can return to factory settings at any time by connecting back to Xperia Companion and following the Software repair

The Sony Xperia Z3 was first released on September 19, 2014 – that’s around 18 months ago.

It features a 5.2-inch Full HD display, a 2.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor, and 3GB of RAM.

Buy Now: Sony Xperia Z3 (Black) at Argos for £279.95

Sony Xperia X hands-on:

Have you tried Android N yet? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.

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