Last year, Sony's Xperia S became the target of a experiment to bring the Android Open Source Project to some new, non-Nexus hardware. Sony approved of the program and eventually took the reins of it, posting some necessary binaries and putting a couple of its software engineers on the project to help out. Now it looks like company wants to do the whole thing once again, this time with the Xperia Z.
Sony announced this morning on its official Developer World blog that it's created an AOSP program for the recently-released Xperia Z. The decision to start the Xperia Z AOSP experiment was made because of the "great interest" that Sony saw in the Xperia S project, and the firm says that the Xperia Z program will also be a way for it to facilitate AOSP contributions on the MSM8960 Snapdragon S4 Pro platform and to pitch in its part to the open Android community.
Starting today, Sony is making several of the Xperia Z binaries available for download. Since some of them are proprietary files, users must sign an agreement stating exactly how the files can be used in order to download them. Anyone that's interested in contributing to the Xperia Z AOSP experiment can do so by hitting up the project's GitHub page.
While Sony says that the Xperia Z AOSP software isn't ready for everyday use, it does note that there are quite a few features already up and running. That includes the SD card, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS and some partial sensor support. Sony also notes that it's gotten both the modem and camera working internally, but it explains that those features require binaries that it doesn't currently have the permission to publish. Looking forward, Sony plans to replace some of the binary files provided today with source code and to release NFC-related binaries.
Since the Xperia Z's AOSP project is missing certain functionality that most users would expect on a phone, this software isn't likely something that regular folks will want to install to their Xperia Z and use as a daily driver. It is a cool project, though, and it's great to see Sony kicking off another AOSP experiment that's targeting its latest hardware. If you'd like to see the progress that Sony has made on the new project so far, or you just want to check out an Xperia Z running vanilla "Android 126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.2.2," check out the video below.