Small Apps removed from Xperia X series – will you miss them?

by XB on 8th June 2016

in Applications


Small-Apps-Material-Design-315x560Sony Mobile has included ‘Small Apps’ in its Xperia software for years now. As the name suggests, these apps ‘float’ on top of the home screen allowing you to use functions such as a calculator, currency converter, mirror, translation and others. Despite being a core part of the firmware for a while, it appears Sony has had a chance of heart when it comes to the usefulness of Small Apps.

The feature is nowhere to be found in the Sony Xperia X and neither is there any option to bring it back. For all intents and purposes, it looks like Sony has killed it off and will not appear in future models. This has also been confirmed in the official Sony Mobile Talk forums. So, will you miss the feature? Or you glad it has disappeared and viewed it as unnecessary bloat? We’d love to hear your views below.

Small-Apps-Material-Design-315x560

  • Constantine

    Finally

  • Dexter Moregan

    I miss them! I usually use Calculator and Screen Capture.

  • KzX

    Small apps are very handy sometimes.
    I’ll miss them. RIP Small Apps

  • Stanley Lu

    Should be fine… I only use calculator.

  • Charles222

    A little. I liked the screen capture one.

  • KzX

    Movie small app & toggles small app are useful too.

  • theskig

    I often use Calculator on work and Timer when cooking.
    I’ll miss them.

  • Madis Otenurm

    N gets multiwindow anyways, so not that important.

  • ????? ?????????

    Never used them,so its not big loss for me…

  • Clarence Alvarado

    Sony should have an option to float apps like window-based panes in N. Naaah anyways Android N and the future updates will support floating multi-window apps

  • Mahesh

    Calculator, Notes, Messaging & Clipboard were useful. I hope Sony doesn’t remove from the older models than X.

  • abbey yruma

    The Screen Capture Shortcut is very useful.. Sony already removed the wireless transfer option which is useful for me.. It’s not only the battery that’s decreasing also useful apps… :-(

  • Kevin Pang

    Yeah, I have always used the timer for baking pizza.

  • Fuerte Gollito

    :[ :[ :[ shit….

  • Dominic81

    Good riddance! That’s the first thing I disabled after a factory reset or update

    Bloat

  • Sunny Boy

    Fuck you sony my Z5 is last Sony device in my hand

  • Fuerte Gollito

    Translate,currency converter miss…:(

  • Tsoa Tsyfatatra

    It’s a matter of screen size for me, on my z3 compact tablet, more often I use the media viewer small app. On a normal phone, i often use the calculator and the mirror.

  • Fuerte Gollito

    Maby, there are still A6…

  • I dont really use them

  • i wouldn’t miss them

  • Shehab Skull

    Well.. I will miss active clipper I always use it for taking screenshots it was so easy and snappy :/ and also other small apps like currency converter.. I don’t think it is a good idea to remove one of main Sonys features.. they will be more closer to stock Android.

  • hansip

    As a maker of small apps, it’s a bit sad for me (loss of income indeed :p). But it is inevitable though, mainly when Android N is near. At least Android N should be released as quickly as it can be, because if they stick for M too long without Small Apps, boy it’s a multitasking nightmare for Sony.

  • Oldtimer42

    Unit converter several times a day. Have not found anything as effective in a full size app.

  • Nowfal.oo

    So sad to hear that

  • mUSICA

    will miss them, few small apps like note, calculators, translators comes pretty handy.

  • Nick Jacobs

    Won’t miss it at all. In fact, I found a very useful hack not so long to remove the launcher bar manually – see http://forums.androidcentral.com/sony-xperia-z3/454786-sony-xperia-z3-how-remove-whats-new-small-apps-home-button-launcher.html.

  • I have to confess that this range strikes me as the new Sony’s strategy.
    Possibly as to remove the small apps in the android N we will have Multiwindow, which replaces in part: D
    Regarding the rest, I have to say that here in Portugal the presentation of the X line happened yesterday (X, XA, XP and XU) and, for the first time in our market, we have all the colors of the devices, and strong bets on marketing. Sony Mobile PT has also confirmed that they´re not expected new releases for the last quarter of the year.

    I believe that this release was delayed a way to bridge that failed before: a global launch of the range. But now we just need to wait and see what Sony takes with this new experience …

  • Amirul Jeffry

    I love to have small browser and calculator. I’ll miss them surely.

  • Azzy

    First thing I always removed after rooting.

  • TheSith LordViridis

    Imagine the outrage when it’s noticed screen recorder has gone too….

  • MinHua Ling

    I am missing the Screen Recording feature more and more than Small Apps!!!!!!!

  • MinHua Ling

    Seems like doesn’t remove in the older devices with android 6.0

  • Chee Siong Lee

    I will miss the Unit Converter

  • Ryuzaki Raiga

    i use for note, calculator and flashlight

  • ????? ????????

    I mainly play youtube videos in background with them (screen locked and everything).

  • ESniper

    i hope there’s an On/Off Switch Option for Small Apps.

    #MakeBelieve #XperiaZSeries #XperiaXSeries

  • Makiz

    Since I bought the smartwatch 3 I don’t use neither anymore..

  • SonyMan

    So X series lost 4k recording, small apps which includes calculator, screen recording, notes, browser, minimised and not that battery hungry YouTube windows, touch block for watery situations like playing YouTube without worrying splashes pause or change the song while in shower and of course the inability to have small apps which could be anything, even widgets… Whoever is not gonna miss small apps, means they didn’t deserve a Sony phone on the first place or they didn’t appreciate the system’s workability in competence with other oems’ solutions. Dual window was always from the best multi tasking features but having the ability to have more than two apps open at the same time, even if they’re small, was always Sony’s small app launcher expertise. Rip and it’ll be missed!! At least now we know why we shouldn’t buy any X series phone. Z series all the way!!

  • Hideg Jen? Péter

    I miss timer when baking my pizza and calucator when I’m at shopping and Converter when i’m at school physics and math and flashlight when i’m at outside and indoor dark places.
    Flashlight is useful.

  • echomrg

    nope, never actually used them.

  • Velexas

    OT: PhoneArena says that the Galaxy S7, with its dual pixel tech, has the fastest AutoFocus available. Is this correct? I thought the 0.03 speed of Sony’s Predictive Hybrid AF was still the king of the AF hill. Still, PhoneArena doesn’t have the best portfolio regarding accuracy and unbiasedness.

  • HARMONy_9934

    I will be miss it

  • Sadman Khan

    Your ones were great. I really loved your work

  • P9

    I often use Calculator, Music Widget, TrackID, Volume Control, Video Viewer (to view youtube video in background)
    I gonna really miss it
    hope Sony just make somewhere to toggle it

  • Lorenzo Cianchelli

    Yes. The fastest is the Xperia Z5 with it’s 0.03

  • ???

    Small apps are quite useful for me, especially the small calculator, timer and unit converter…..and sony canceled the screen recording function on x series, I really hope that sony can continue these function on the new phones!

  • Jonathan Bratanata

    Wait, WHAT?

  • Alvin

    I have mixed feelings about this… but yes, I’ll miss them mostly..

  • I never used them and I’m absolutely happy that they are out of my way. Although, I respect others did find them quite useful, so instead of just killing them, an option would have been the better choice.

  • Anibal Evora

    boas!
    então só vão lançar novos aparelhos no próximo ano?

  • Screen capture and screen recorder are things I use a lot. Will they disappear too?

  • Dimitar Pachov

    Will miss too. Use translator and unit converter.

  • Maurice Phoenix

    For me, it’s been part of my everyday use… I find it Very useful. I hope Sony will come up with something to replace it. I think other bloatware is much useless than this small app

  • Kaarthikeyan Swaminathan

    Why the hell did they kill it. That was a great feature. OMG. Is it coz of Google N split screen feature??? For the first time SONY, Curse you

  • David Hvatov

    No, because I don’t have Xperia X.

  • Tochi Nwodu

    i would miss this feature alot cuz i use currency converter, calculator ,screen grabber(most especially when i cant use both hands)….why don’t they just make it optional? with on and off switch
    would every feature just disappear….then adding double press the power button to open camera. what is the shutter button there for..? it seems they’ll ditch that aswell

  • Nafnaf84

    Small Apps are quite useful, I use it for Notes or Active Clip, sometimes Calculator and Timer… the one that I would miss is Notes because I’ll need to install another app for it…

  • SM

    not much really. I rarely use them.

  • Tendy Fish

    it was boatware to me, had actually removed it from my Z3C

  • QBerto

    Is fast, but is not 0.03s, if that was true, we shouldn’t see the autofocus (we should see the thing focused, or they implemented an animation that make it looks slow)…. The S7 is fast as hell, I’d say they both are the same
    Downside, sony seems a lot worst because after the focus, shutter speed is so slow that it seems u missed “that” moment u wanna capture

  • Timel

    Xperia UI need to change a little bit

    Small apps feature is useful but everytime when we have to use small apps we have to press recent app bottom which is such a stupid and boring user experience , like I said if Sony want to change UI a little bit, for example hide the small apps bar at or left edge , let user swipe it out when wanna use , it’s more comfortable

  • No.

    But they really need to provide a setting to enable them in Settings for users who still want to use the feature.

  • goldenblls

    They’re great on the Tablet Compact. I’ll miss them for sure.

  • proberts

    Likewise, but there was/maybe still is a bug with the timer where if you have auto-rotate on, and rotate the screen whilst the timer is on, the timer will reset, because it’s not saving the instance state.

  • EPGuest

    Wtf? That’s one thing I love about my phone. I don’t need to constantly switch between apps like my gf with her iPhone.

    I always used calculator, mirror, Active Clip (screenshot but just the part you want instead of the entire screen), the timer, the currency and measurement calculator and I still want to use the browser and memo if they make a good app for it (again…). This sucks insanely hard.

    The Z5 still does have all the good old Xperia things, right? Maybe I should that one quickly before they don’t sell them anymore.

  • EPGuest

    You can exit the phone call screen while still calling and there is a browser small app so you can call somebody while on YouTube with the browser small app open.

  • Matt

    nope , not at all, i will only miss the touch block though :D

  • Matt

    ofcourse it is the onee thing you love =,=

  • theskig

    They fixed the bug with MM update.
    No more issues ;)

  • theskig

    Yes Z5 has small apps. And if they remove them with future updates you can still downgrade.

  • theskig

    Ahahah it’s “boatware” because the phone is waterproof!

  • dragonsneeze

    background YouTube is life and calculator is love

  • Penso que sim, mas fico agora confuso se o E5 será lançado cá ou não já que no site aparece como “Brevemente” http://www.sonymobile.com/pt/products/phones/
    Mas agora acho que é acreditar no que eles dizem, e esperar para que essa informação seja baseada numa boa comunicação entre a Sony Mobile e as suas representantes nos países…

  • KKTK

    Small Apps was useless garbage from very beginning.

  • illstplaya .

    The only small app that I used was the flashlight small app. Because the built in flashlight doesn’t stay on with the screen off, so I downloaded the flash light small app which let’s me use the flash with the screen off.

  • Flythe

    No, I won’t miss them since they’ll become obsolete with the new Android N split screen feature. What I did miss this year was a Xperia Z6 Tablet I could have tried either of them on. Anyways, Sony did not much to support them during their lifetime (hell, Sony’s own while finally having a new icon look under Marshmallow still run their outdated interfaces). The “turn Widgets into Small Apps”-feature just turned them into movable shortcuts and there’ve been few recommandable apps by Sony or third party developers (shoutout for hansip87, your Small Apps were really, really great). Furthermore, on a Z3 Compact’s screen they’re just useless, although I have to admit that I’ve used the calculator and the browser on my tablet often and gladly.

  • Flythe

    Android mutes any other sound during a phone call, anyways, but swiping the Small Apps in (like Samsung’s Apps Edge) would be pretty nice.

  • Raj Singh

    Cool to have but considering Android N has the ability to show multiple windows it shouldn’t be much of an issue.

  • Ulas

    Hello, how can you play videos when screen is locked via these small apps? I tried media viewer small app however it turned of when screen is locked.

  • ????? ????????
  • vmxr

    no, i will not miss them i dont use them i use normal apps

  • Vuyo Ncube

    Gonna miss Touch Block and Web videos for playing YouTube in my pocket or in the background.

  • Szabó Béla

    I’am using the calculator and the unit converter every day. I won’t upgrade it seems.

  • paul_cus

    They were always hit or miss for me, honestly. I might not have even noticed they were missing.

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  • Ulas

    Thanks a lot

  • EPGuest

    No… It’s one thing I love, not the one thing I love. What’s wrong with that?

  • ZerothGlacius

    I can confirm heat issues on Xperia X. Oddly enough it heats up to the point of throttling and disabling camera functions even if I have a 2A battery bank connected to it….

  • adibuyono

    Contact and call are available by 3rd party named small phone.. You can get it at play store..

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  • Tendy Fish

    hahaha, hadn’t noticed that typo

  • Arturo Pastrana

    I use a lot the calculator! it was pretty useful, so yes im gonna miss it sometimes

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  • Chuck

    Rather unfortunate news. I wasn’t planning on buying a new Xperia anyway but I’m sad to see all these features being removed, battery being downgraded, and other negative developments. I wish Sony the best of luck nevertheless…

  • SSyar

    do we really have to worry when there is XDA !!

  • Leonard Giam

    Yea, I’ll be missing Small Apps a lot as I’ve been using the calculator, currency converter and translation too. It’s good that the Small Apps are always located at the same corner that user can access them quickly. To me the Small Apps are quite handy and I hope they will bring it back in the future.

  • Ashleyahammond4

    “my room mate Lori Is getting paid on the internet $98/hr”…..!tl870ur

    two days ago grey McLaren. P1 I bought after earning 18,512 Dollars..it was my previous month’s payout..just a little over.17k Dollars Last month..3-5 hours job a day…with weekly payouts..it’s realy the simplest. job I have ever Do.. I Joined This 7 months. ago. and now making over hourly. 87 Dollars…Learn. More right Here !tl870u:?:?:.?.?.?.? http://GlobalSuperJobsReportsEmploymentsLookGetPay$98Hour…. .????????????????????????????????????????????????????::::::!tl870o….,..

  • Ashleyahammond4

    “my room mate Lori Is getting paid on the internet $98/hr”…..!tl870ur

    two days ago grey McLaren. P1 I bought after earning 18,512 Dollars..it was my previous month’s payout..just a little over.17k Dollars Last month..3-5 hours job a day…with weekly payouts..it’s realy the simplest. job I have ever Do.. I Joined This 7 months. ago. and now making over hourly. 87 Dollars…Learn. More right Here !tl870u:?:?:.?.?.?.? http://GlobalSuperJobsReportsEmploymentsLookGetPay$98Hour…. .????????????????????????????????????????????????????::::::!tl870o….,.

  • laci_csk

    No need for small apps, never used them.

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  • Roh_Mish

    Wow. Now that you summed it up I realised how much backwards shiny has gone with X. They discontinued Z unfortunately. Also there is no Compact series. We would have seen atleast leaks by now

  • Roh_Mish

    The Z5 and X is fast but they are variable and rarely come own to 0.03 while GS7 is much more consistent at that. Maybe that’s why they gave it the title. But both are 0.03 per specifications

  • Matt

    nothing wrong really, you are free to love anything.

    but everytime sony cut anything at all. always the same comment

  • Aigars Vilc?ns

    I’ll miss them – I use Unit converter, Touch block and Timer

  • Great Dude

    First of all, I don’t think that they are the same,maybe similar and each to his preference.
    I don’t own Xperia X but why they have to wait a year till they have that feature ?

  • Great Dude

    They are great, quick to use and would even prefer if they had an option like putting a button for them next to the recent and home buttons (since it is software) and if they had made it optional to use in first place.
    I think that they are different than Multi-Window and I am not sure if I would like multi-window more or this one but I don’t think Multi-Windows would be good for a mirror app since they change the ratios of apps or as a small side timer app which you will hide most of the time you are using it.

  • Abduliano

    It’s very useful, one of best features that make use xperia z,!! Especially for translation, you have just to click in any word and it will translated directly in to the small translator!

  • Akand

    I’ll miss calculator, browser and note. These 3 I use very often.

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  • Zoran Drenkovic

    for Sony Xperia X it writes:
    Your device isn’t compatible with this version.
    :(

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  • ????? ????????

    The app in the link works only if you already have the small apps framework. As stated in the article, the framework isn’t available by default on Xperia X, so it’s only natural that those app wouldn’t work.

  • Tania Campos

    “my room mate Lori Is getting paid on the internet $98/hr”…..!tl275x

    two days ago grey McLaren. P1 I bought after earning 18,512 Dollars..it was my previous month’s payout..just a little over.17k Dollars Last month..3-5 hours job a day…with weekly payouts..it’s realy the simplest. job I have ever Do.. I Joined This 7 months. ago. and now making over hourly. 87 Dollars…Learn. More right Here !tl275x:?:?:.?.?.?.? http://GlobalSuperJobsReportsEmploymentsMetricsGetPay$98Hour…. .????????????????????????????????????????????????????::::::!tl275x….,…

  • Mac

    Man.. another neat Sony feature that disappear.. what is this!?
    I use it almost every day, most useful are calculator, currency converter, Unit converter and notes (disappeard somewhere between Z1C and Z3C)

  • AllanKafka

    Then you might ask yourself why people always complain when Sony cuts things. Hint: it might not be entirely the people’s fault.

  • Matt

    wrong hint actually . .

    if sony keep introduce new features and do not let go of the old ones their software become bloated , even worse they become touchwizz

  • AllanKafka

    Oh, very interesting. So please tell me about the new features conflicting with Small Apps and making them obsolete.

  • Mutlu Ertu?u?

    i’ll miss them :S

  • Matt

    interesting indeed. Conflict is not needed to make the cut.

    sony probably pulling usage data from experias and find out the usage of small app are rather (pun intended) small. so they cut it to make less background app .

    if the usage is small, better remove it and maintain another features.

  • AllanKafka

    If they are so concerned with their stuff not getting enough usage, they might as well soon choose to stop producing phones altogether.
    Anyway, glad for you that probably you will be happy with whatever they do.
    On the contrary, I would slap someone at Sony Mobile in the face for the X, X Performance, their pricing, the fcuking WiFi bug on my MM Z5 and now the removal of small apps from X firmware.
    Your attitude is good because it makes you enjoy what you have, but frankly I think there are a bunch of clueless frogs jumping around making decisions at Sony Mobile… Alas

  • Tommy He

    Wow, no, no, no, no!

    I used Calculator, Unit Converter and Touch Block quite often. They’re indeed very handy tool.

    Also, system monitor on Z4 Tablet:

    https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.hansip87.smallapp.sysmonitor

    Glad I picked a Z5 Compact early this year. X series seems to be just ANOTHER boring premium phone with no distinctive features.

  • Igor Stolyarov

    it would be much better if Sony had killed their useless applications, such as Socialife, TalkBack, Xperia Lounge, Xperia Lounge Pass and the same

  • ?? ?

    No! Its useful

  • Omar

    Not at all. I never use them, but they take up space in my recents menu and disables the transparent nav bar. Every time I flash a new ROM or buy a new phone I will disable it as a must-do.

  • Debris Eswagen Molina

    Just got my nee xperia X and damn! Where’s the screen record function!

  • duan yifan

    Not untill I found pokevision, for pokemon trainers we need to use the browser (map) while playing the game to see where the pokemons are:'(

  • Robert Morodan

    will miss them but mayebe there is a repacement? a 3rd party app?

  • Avery

    I miss them… Used them daily and by the comments below, everyone else too. Bad move imo. Also the screen recorder was removed. Bought this expensive phone to miss old ones… To bad…

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