For the past year, high-end Sony phones sold in the United States, in the Xperia Z5 and X series, have lacked the fingerprint scanner tech found in their international cousins — a major feature omission for a modern high-end phone. The same applies to the recently launched Xperia XZ and X Compact — fingerprint internationally, no fingerprint in the U.S.
Now it appears that the U.S. models' fingerprint sensors may merely be disabled in hardware. XperiaBlog has discovered that flashing UK firmware to a U.S. Xperia XZ results in a fully functional fingerprint sensor. The relatively simple flashing process is detailed over on XDA. With the UK firmware flashed, the fingerprint scanner works just like it would on an international Xperia XZ or X Compact.
The revelation only makes the lack of a functional fingerprint sensor in U.S. models appear more strange.
Android Central put the question of the missing fingerprint sensor to senior Sony representatives at the IFA tradeshow in Germany this August, but the company wasn't able to give a clear answer on why the U.S. models lacked such a key feature.
One possibility is that Sony didn't want to pay the licensing costs attached to fingerprint technology, and so chose to ship the same hardware as the global version, but disable the feature in software. Another is that some outstanding agreement with the U.S. carriers — back when Sony was selling to Verizon and T-Mobile — may not allow it to. We've reached out to Sony U.S. for comment on today's news, and we'll update this story with any response.
PS5 snub shows just how little Sony cares about India
The PS5 and PS5 Digital Edition will be going on sale in most global markets starting November 12. But with Sony failing to reveal pricing and availability details for India, PlayStation fans are left guessing as to when Sony's next-gen console will make its debut in the country.
Everything you need to know about the Pixel 4a and Pixel 4a 5G
The Pixel 4a is now available, the Pixel 4a 5G is coming soon, and we've rounded up everything you need to know about both phones. Let's dive in!
What to expect from Amazon's September 2020 Alexa & Ring hardware event
Amazon is set to host its annual fall hardware event on Thursday, September 24. Here are a few devices that we might expect to see at tomorrow's event.
Get a case and keep those Surface Duo screens safe from harm
The options may be slim-pickings at the moment, but what can you really expect from a first-generation device like the Microsoft Surface Duo. This dual-screen wielding monster aims to make you more productive with a unique hinge system that we haven't seen elsewhere. But do yourself a favor, and get a case so that even a little bit of dust won't hinder your experience.