Android 1.6, Not Xperia X10, Limited To 65k Colors


x10There are a few highly anticipated Android phones lingering on the interwebz and the officially confirmed Xperia X10 is among them. With a 4-inch screen, the X10 has the potential to rock some amazing clarity and visuals from everyday use in basic applications to HD video. Or does it?

Following the announcement, many Android enthusiasts clamored for answers regarding X10 product details. Luckily, Global Marketing Manager for the Xperia X10 – Sumit Malhotra -provided a brief Xperia X10 Q&A to address some of the most pressing questions about the phone. Among them was this exchange:

* How many colors does the screen support?

I noticed the confusion in the communction around this topic, but the correct number is 65,536.

Uhohs. The Motorola Droid screen, by contrast, is capable of displaying Up to 16M colors. XperiaFail? Not exactly…

The difference in the 16 million colors of the Droid and the 65,536 colors of the Xperia X10 is the version of Android being run. Android 1.6 isn’t capable/compatible with 16M devices and so the full functionality of the X10 hardware isn’t utilized. Yes… the X10 DOES support 16 million colors but because it will launch with Android 1.6 and not Android 2.0, you won’t be able to enjoy 16 million color functionality.

So the logical next question is, “Will the Xperia X10 get an Android 2.0 upgrade?” That is the exact next question from the Q&A with Sumit:

* Will the X10 receive Android 2.0 update (for those who bought from the initial batches with Android 1.6) ?

The UX platform used for Xperia X10 will evolve to Android 2.0 over time.

So for those wondering, Android 1.6 will limit the Xperia X10 to 65,536 colors when it initially launches, but at some point it will receive an Android 2.0 update that will allow it to display the full 16 million colors for which it is capable.

I know… I know… you’re wondering how long after launch it will get the Android 2.0 update. We don’t have that information for you. Actually, we don’t even know when its launching! But I can tell you that if you stay tuned to Phandroid we WILL have that information “at some point”.

[Thanks Dave]

Answers to some of your questions

Let me introduce myself. I am Sumit Malhotra, Global marketing manager for Xperia X10.


I am very happy about the announcement earlier this week. Using the phone outside the office walls has been somewhat of a relief and it is encouraging to get some remarks and raised eyebrows when people see me using it. The design is eye catching and stands out from normal large screen so getting great response and anticipation, but a lot of questions as well….

One of the benefits of using an open operating system is that we can tailor your phone to your specific needs. As an example, there is not a document editor preloaded, but there are and will be free and premium applications available in the application store.

Now to your questions. I haven’t been able to answer all of them at this point but have tried my best to get to as many as possible.

* Will it have multi-touch in future updates?

Xperia X10 has a capacitive screen. It does not support multi-touch functionality at launch, but is considered for the future.

* What’s a scratch-resistant screen?

Xperia X10 has mineral glass to prevent easy scratching and fingerprint coating.

* Is it based on OpenGL 1.1 or 2.0 for games and other stuff?

Xperia X10 supports Open GL 2.0.

* What is the size of the battery?

It is 1500mAh.

* How many colors does the screen support?

I noticed the confusion in the communction around this topic, but the correct number is 65,536.

Rob Jackson
I'm an Android and Tech lover, but first and foremost I consider myself a creative thinker and entrepreneurial spirit with a passion for ideas of all sizes. I'm a sports lover who cheers for the Orange (College), Ravens (NFL), (Orioles), and Yankees (long story). I live in Baltimore and wear it on my sleeve, with an Under Armour logo. I also love traveling... where do you want to go?

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  1. Personally this is the phone I am waiting for. I am willing to wait for the upgrade to the OS system and start out with a better looking and better piece of hardware that will last me much longer. The fact is with that kind of camera…I’ll be able to say goodbye to my cam on trips. Its clean and sexy…just let it be on T-Mobile or Verizon if it really comes to the US. I would pay the extra $$$ up front for this.

  2. Love the device but is bad news to know that this may take some time to release and may be even more to get Android 2. It sounds to me the device that the device won’t be in the states until Q2 or so and “may be” getting an upgrade to Android 2 something around Q3 nest year… SAD SAD! since I really like that device :\

  3. Oh, btw turn-by-turn navigation on this phone too…by wisepilot according to their spec sheet on the sony ericsson site. If good enough may also mean the GPS can stay home too.

  4. It will evolve to Android 2.0 when 2.5 or 3 will be available. Sad that they need to lunch already dated product, but I feel that Google is to blame for this.

    This is lake getting laptop with Windows Vista instead of XP.

  5. This should actually be “like getting latpop with Vista instead of Windows 7” :)

  6. X10 doesn`t support 16M colors…. it`s just 262 Kcolor ,,, Android 1.6 limited display up to 65kcolor , but with android 2.0, X10 could deliver 262Kcolor to users..

  7. I think the reason it’s not launching with 2.0 is because of some things I’ve heard across the web. It seems like Verizon has an exclusive deal to hold 2.0 probably for awhile.

    I hope that is the reason and SE isn’t just being lazy.

  8. I hope that the hardware is what’s holding up the release, and not the UX interface. If that is the case, then the UX team can be working on a 2.0 port while the hardware guys finish up the first release. That then would lead to a 2.0 port shortly after release.

    Let’s hope!

  9. So excited for this breaking news~~ Especially for “WILL have that information ‘at some point’.”
    Come on~~~ ^_^

  10. @croandroid:

    What’s a latpop? XD

  11. speaking of new phones being released, i was at the tmobile store today to get my g1 replaced (it died completely on me :( ) and i was talking to the salesgirl about upgrading, and she told me that a new htc android phone was coming out for tmobile soon. now, i could be wrong, but i don’t remember anyone mentioning anything about a new tmobile htc phone, so that news got me very excited. hopefully a dragon phone?

  12. Exclusives on 2.0? If they are holding out on 2.0 for Verizon, that’s ridiculous. If their that easy to sway, T-Mobile should have gotten a 2 year exclusivity agreement when no one else wanted Android. Google just seems to be changing the whole direction and idea of Android. If this keeps up, give an HD2. Ill wait till WinMo7. At least they don’t try to pretend their something their not.

    (This is coming from an Android early adopter who still has his G1 with rooted rom.)

  13. This was supposed to be my upgrade phone.

  14. LOL. Still having faith in WinMo? Good luck then!

  15. Is this going to be a huge deal? You’re just viewing stuff on a phone. With such a small screen, I don’t think that influences web pages too much. Videos, sure….but why watch an HD video on a screen smaller than most small SD screens? Short videos will be fine. I just hope they update with speed. This would really suck if we got android 2.0 just as android 3.0 was coming out. Google seems to be releasing new versions much faster than other software companies, so Sony had better keep up!

  16. What company is this phone coming to? I’m tired of my g1. By the way the samsung beholds screen is SICK! I doubted this phone still do a little but a 15 minute look over the phone andi will be getting this phone for my girl. Now I’m still waiting for a beast of a phone for me. X10 maybe?? That’s if tmobile is smart enough to pick this phone up!!

  17. Samsung Galaxy has 16M and is running on Cupcake, right ?

    So I don’t understand Sony Ericsson here.

  18. I can’t wait for this phone. I certainly hope that it is released with 2.0 on it. This one phone from SE could really make the rest of the Android phones step up their game a ton. I’m using a Droid now but will definately give it up for the X10. In another article on this site, I saw it say potentially a February 2010 release. I really hope that it is right. Good bye Droid, hello X10 (hopefully on the AT&T network.)

  19. Would one be able to wipe this phone and put just the vanilla Google OS in?

  20. I think that everyone is jumping the gun a little . 2.0 came out officially what like a week ago.It was a rushed release to boot. I heard through my grapevine which has always been on point that we will have an update by the end of 09 if not the first week in 10 . We all want the beast phone to smash on all the other plastic OS’s out there it just takes time . I have been on team Android since day one and i will continue you roll with the BOT till the wheels fall off!!!!

  21. this fucking phone is dead before launch. wont even consider it until it gets 2.0 (at which point ill JUMP on it)

  22. Sony spent all this time developing a completely new UI for the previous android version…of course it will take time for it to work with android 2.0. No need for conspiracy theories.

  23. From what i see, Media- and Timescape appear to be apps. I am not familiar with how apps work across versions of Android but maybe we can update to 2.0 and wait for the UI to catch up?

  24. well there are a lot of apps that need to be updated for 2.0. In this case I’m sure Sony wants the UI to be redesigned for 16M colors.

  25. dont care when eclair comes to the phone fix the battery life problem and i’ll be happy…last i heard its worse than the g1 in that category

  26. @513: The gorgeous AMOLED screen in Samsung Galaxy supports 16M colors, but sadly Android 1.5/6 does not. Hence Galaxy users cannot yet fully enjoy the full capabilities of their hardware.
    Shame on Samsung for not even releasing a 1.6 firmware for it yet, either.

  27. Why dont these guys plan properly? Whats the point to release the phone with v1.6 when v2.0 is already out! that too the release is still 2-3months away! by that time android would go up to v3.0!
    It is a phone with wrong plans in terms of OS, wrong plan in terms of release. they should have launched this for christmas with android v2.0. They are always late!!

  28. Android 2.0 was Designed by Google, Samsung and Verizon Engineers from 1.5 Forked Source Code and its not Released on Open Source Repository so Sony can not use it Right now.

    But due to GPL Licensing they have to Release in Mean while. In Open Source is somebody Altered the Source Code they have to Release it when they Actually Start Using / Selling it. So be Patient once its Open Source from Private Groups Repository every Hardware Manufacturer can use it.

  29. Errata

    Sorry it was Google, Motorola and Verizon

  30. XPERIA X10 is expected to be launched on Feb 10th 2010.

  31. X10 has many shortcomings compared to Droid
    1)No Flash,so no camera/video capture at night
    2)Android 1.6 vs Droid has Android 2.0
    3)No Ambient Light sensor( Display brightness automatically adjusts as per the outside light – dark vs bright )
    4)No Voice activated google maps navigation
    5)Video capture for X10 is at lower resolution then Droid
    6)Biggest of all: No physical keypad
    7)Price for X10 is more then four times of Droid

  32. @marc
    1. The X10 does have a flash/video light.
    2. It’s launching with 1.6 in Feb, but there’ll be an update to 2.0. I’d rather wait and have the most finished release.
    3. Even though it doesn’t say it in the specs, who would make a phone now days without an ambient light sensor?
    4. Voice recognition will likely be added with éclair.
    5. Granted, it seems now that the video rez is lower, but we don’t know if those are the final specs. It does after all have 3mp more than the droid.
    6. No physical keyboard being a con is completely subjective. Some people hate keyboards.
    7. We don’t even know the final price, yet, and the price of the droid is HEAVILY subsidized through Verizon. If the X10 has a carrier in the US, it won’t cost $800.

  33. now where is the 16m update?

  34. I have Xperia X10 on android 2.1, and it still doesn’t have 16million colors as per the official website sony.co.in. Is this thing region specific?

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