Yet another fluke or a worrying trend? Just when you thought Sony is finally doing good by its stalwart Android fans, it pulls yet another one that makes you wonder just what the Japanese OEM is thinking. The Xperia XZ “true flagship” and the Xperia X Compact “mini flagship” are both headed to the US, but although much-awaited, they might not arrive complete. The particular models intended for the US market will apparently NOT feature a fingerprint scanner that has become a staple of any flagship smartphone.
To be fair, this isn’t the first time Sony pulled this kind of stunt. Actually, it dates back to the Xperia Z5 and Z5 Compact that arrived in the US just at the start of the year. And it did so again n the Xperia X Performance just a few months ago. Given how Sony didn’t really “correct” those “mistakes”, it seems that the situation is just as hopeless.
As bewildering as this detail may be, it is perhaps even more puzzling considering reports indicate that the hardware is actually present, simply disabled in the US firmware.
While some might question whether a disabled fingerprint scanner is enough reason to cry foul, the feature has admittedly become as common and as expected in smartphones, especially the high-end ones. But more importantly, it raises the question of Sony’s intentions and commitment to the US market.
There might still be time for Sony to make a U-turn, though given its past behavior, it probably won’t. While there have been ways, mostly with third-party Android ROMs, to re-enable the feature, one has to ask whether it’s worth bending over backwards for a smartphone whose hardware, though present, has been disabled on a whim.