Would you pay a subscription fee for guaranteed Android software updates?

by XB on 29th July 2014

in Android, Featured Content, Firmware

android_studio_logo-300x300Some of the more consistent comments that we see on this site relate to “where is my firmware update?” For any manufacturer, working on Android updates is an economic decision. Newer handsets will always be supported first, sometimes leaving older handsets languishing on older firmware and Android builds.

Look at the Xperia C for example, it has only received two firmware updates since the handset launched. It is likely that most Xperia C owners would have reasonably expected better support, the handset hasn’t moved from its Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean build that it launched from.

The same applies to Xperia L owners who for some reason have not seen an update to Android 4.3, even though the lower-end Xperia M did see this update. Then you have the Xperia SP, which many thought would receive the Xperia 4.4 KitKat update, but there’s still no word on this and the omens don’t look good.

The consistent theme with all of the above is that no one has a clue whether another official update is coming and, if so, what the timing will be. As mentioned earlier, we can understand that with a large portfolio of handsets to support and limited resources, Sony is not giving ‘full’ support to some of the lower-end handsets that some expect should be there.

There is an expectation nowadays from prospective Sony Xperia owners that your handset will only be supported well if it is a flagship model However, we would still like to see much greater transparency from Sony on how long a particular handset will be supported for.

It did get us thinking though – if economics is the main reason why Sony isn’t supporting some of these handsets, what if it offered some kind of subscription fee to ensure you’re kept up to date on the latest Android builds? Is this something that you would consider paying for? Or, do you feel that once you’ve paid for the handset, the price of software support should be implicit in the cost of the handset? We’d love to hear your thoughts below.

Thanks Malih!

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