Unlocking the Xperia Z1 bootloader will screw up your camera, warns Sony

If you've just picked up a shiny new Sony Xperia Z1 and want to get hacking away at the device, you may want to hold off for awhile. A new message on the Sony Mobile bootloader unlock site warns that —

"Warning! At the moment, unlocking the Xperia™ Z1 boot loader will stop the camera functionality."

So presumably if you go ahead with the unlock process, that fancy 20.7-megapixel Exmor RS camera will turn into a pumpkin. It's likely this is a temporary glitch — and given Sony's track record with allowing devices to be unlocked we'd expect a fix to arrive in due course. Nevertheless, if you want to actually take photos on your Z1 it seems you'll need to keep your hands off the bootloader for now.

We've got an email out to Sony, and we'll update this post with any further info they provide.

Source: Sony Bootloader Unlock; via: XperiaBlog (opens in new tab)

Alex Dobie
Executive Editor

Alex was with Android Central for over a decade, producing written and video content for the site, and served as global Executive Editor from 2016 to 2022.

  • I'm no expert so I'm wondering what unlocking the bootloader has to do with the camera at all.
  • I have fiddled round a bit with making roms but why it would brick the cam is beyond me too.
  • It's probably because the phone uses an extra deticated chip (BIONZ processor) for the camera. Unlocking the bootloader on Sony phones always disabled the DRM (like Bravia Engine), I guess the BIONZ is part of the DRM that gets disabled.
  • Yeah I think that is the case. Well if so then it should be easy to workaround as with previous xperias we used to back up the TA partition and that saved our Drm keys and we could then use them and the apps which broke before because of the drm keys would work. Yeah just got it confirmed. The only way around this is to make sure you back up the TA partition (responsible for Sony’s DRM keys) prior to unlocking the bootloader and then restore as necessary, re-locking the bootloader in the process.
  • So now it's not enough that it woids the warranty it screws up the device as well. Are they making a point here or it's just a glitch? Posted via Android Central App
  • So now it's not enough that it woids the warranty it screws up the device as well. Are they making a point here or it's just a glitch? Posted via Android Central App
  • The truly sad part is that Verizon and Motorola have crack teams trying to figure out how this happened So they can duplicate it....
  • "Temporarily, unlocking the Droid Maxx bootloader will void the warranty and cause bolts of electricity to shoot from the battery and melt your eyes. This is a temporary issue and we expect to provide a fix by 2017."
  • Lmao, that's hilarious. Posted via Android Central App
  • I hate that phones are so locked down. It's my device, I should be able to risk the warranty if I want.
  • Sony has protected the good people of the United States from this problem by simply not offering them the device. Posted via Android Central App
  • At least they are warning people and ate very easy to work with when it comes to unlocking. Very developer friendly. It looks like a great phone. Posted via Android Central App
  • It sounds like they are working to resolve this. While it is a stupid problem to have, it sounds like they actually intend to fix it.
  • for lock and relock any xperia mobiles refer
  • for video tutorial to relock http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1VDezntQFmc