Jolla has announced that Sony Mobile is adding its Sailfish OS to the Open Devices Programme. This essentially means that there will be Sony support for Sailfish on Xperia devices, with Jolla working on an official release for the smartphones.
Sony’s Open Devices Programme is the company’s contribution to the Android Open Source Project. The company essentially provides a framework for developers that want to tweak Android on its devices. It’s not something that Sony often talks about, but it’s a level of support that doesn’t appear very often with brands trying to maintain more control over their devices.
The framework includes instructions on how to begin developing on Sony devices, examples to follow, and even forums for getting help. There’s even a guide for returning the phone to its original state; complete with a ROM for download.
We don’t expect Sony to actually begin selling Sailfish based devices. On the other hand, this opens the door for developers who want to test their work on a more robust device. Jolla already has an Xperia X running Sailfish on display at MWC 2017 and expects to get a full release ready by Q2 2017.