After a long wait, Sony is finally seeding the Android KitKat 4.4.4 update to the early 2013 Xperia high-end devices. The update is now available for the Sony Xperia Z, Xperia ZL, Xperia ZR, and the Xperia Tablet Z.
The update is based on Android KitKat 4.4.4 and carries a build number 10.5.1.A.0.283 for Xperia Z, ZL and ZR. For the Xperia Tablet Z the build number is 10.5.A.0.230. The update is only available for the Wi-Fi only variants of the Xperia Tablet Z though, the 3G models haven’t received the update yet. The Wi-Fi only models are SGP311 and SGP312.
Sony has also provided a changelog for this update on its support pages for the four devices. The changes include upgrade to the latest Android version, better battery performance in some background applications, Email stability & performance enhancements, along with latest bug fixes and enhancements. There are also general improvements to MMS, Calendar, Wi-FI, Contacts and more.
The updates are currently available only in a select few countries and regions so you could have to wait about a day or two more depending on which country you’re from, to receive the update. Users from France, Thailand, and Middle East have so far received the update on their devices and are reporting an overall smooth experience with better performance compared to the earlier firmware which was based on Android 4.3 Jellybean. If you’re curious about the update and can’t wait for a few days to receive the official update on your device, you can head over to this thread on XDA and flash any of the available 4.4.4 firmwares on your device. You don’t need to be rooted or have your bootloader unlocked to be able to do so, simply download the Xperia Flashtool software to your PC and load the firmware you download from the thread linked above to flash it on to your device.
It did take Sony some time to bring the KitKat update to these devices, but the new update certainly seems to have been worth the wait going by the positive impressions posted so far by users on XDA.
If you have received the update on your Xperia Z, ZL, ZR or Tablet Z, do share your experience under the comments below.