Surprise Surprise! Sony Ericsson, which was known for its poor track record in updating its Android handsets to the latest version, has released an alpha Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich ROM for a few of its Xperia handsets. This makes Sony Ericsson the second company to release an ‘official’ beta/alpha build of Ice Cream Sandwich for their handset.
Since this is an Alpha ROM, Xperia users should keep in mind that not everything works. The ROM is good only for demonstration purposes, and some important features like Wi-Fi, Calls/Data, FM-Radio, Access to Google Market and other Google Apps along with Bluetooth is still missing.
Below is a video of the alpha Ice Cream Sandwich ROM in action on the Xperia Arc S -:
As it is visible from the video above, Sony Ericsson is still using their Timescape UI with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. However, all the company has kept all the good stuffs like the new web browser, new notification bar, new Settings UI etc. They have also tweaked the lock screen and the copy-paste style a bit.
Sadly, the Alpha ICS ROM is available only for the Xperia Ray, Arc S and the Neo V, which have an unlocked bootloaders. However, there is a catch – If you unlock the bootloader on your Xperia handset to try out this demo Ice Cream Sandwich ROM, your warranty will be void and you won’t be able to install the official Ice Cream Sandwich update for your phone, whenever it arrives. Interested Xperia Arc S, Neo V and Ray owners can find more instructions on how to install this alpha ICS ROM on their handset here.