Google says Sony contributed to major wireless audio quality enhancements in Android O

Google has many partners that help the company polish or even add new features to its new versions of Android, but they usually aren't pointed out for their contributions.

However, Sony's work on Android O impressed Google so much that some of its officials have been praising the Japanese company's contribution to help build a better Android ecosystem. One Google official was quoted saying that Sony Mobile “contributed more than 30 feature enhancements and 250 bug fixes.”

The word is that Sony helped significantly improve wireless audio quality in Android O, and even contributed its LDAC wireless audio coding technology. If you didn't know, LDAC could transfer more data over Bluetooth than the usual standard, up to a bitrate of up to 990kpbs.

The technology that will probably be part of the final version of Android O is already built into some of the most expensive Sony wireless headphones, wireless speakers, but also into Xperia smartphones

Thanks to Sony's contribution, other Android handset makers will be able to include LDAC technology inside their smartphones. Sony is the only one that uses LDAC technology inside wireless headphones and speakers, so once Android O comes out, audiophiles who want to experience highest audio quality will be forced to buy Sony's products.

Other companies will have to pay for licensing fees if they want to integrate LDAC technology into wireless headphones or speakers, but LDAC is free to include into mobile devices since it's now part of the Android AOSP base code.

Here is a short explanation of Sony's LDAC wireless coding technology, which will be accessible for free to all Android partners to include in their phones/tablets:

source: The Verge



1. Subie

Posts: 2451; Member since: Aug 01, 2015

Awesome, thanks Sony! When this comes Samsung phones I think Hallyu will thank you too ;)

7. Settings

Posts: 2943; Member since: Jul 02, 2014

Someone must be upset by now.

19. Rocastle

Posts: 17; Member since: Mar 02, 2017


2. IosDroid

Posts: 117; Member since: Dec 03, 2015

Cosmin, could you detail whether this will come to existing phones with Android O software update or just new phones that have specific HW support?

4. trojan_horse

Posts: 5868; Member since: May 06, 2016

It's most certainly for new phones with that specific hardware support, as I think older phones do not have what it takes to make use of Sony's wireless audio quality in Android O.

6. cosmin.v

Posts: 48; Member since: Aug 22, 2016

I believe it's software-related, so if your current phone will receive Android O at some point, it might get LDAC support as well. However, you will still need LDAC compatible wireless headphones (or speakers) to take advantage of the codec. Currently, only Sony makes them :) I'll ask Sony for more info and will be back with an official answer.

15. Minas

Posts: 1; Member since: Mar 22, 2017

Actually it got nothing to do with hardware. It's just a audio streaming codec, no need for bluetooth 5. Bluetooth 4.0 is more than enough to transmit LDAC via wireless connection. You just need headphone which supports LDAC.

3. Busyboy

Posts: 739; Member since: Jan 07, 2015

Sony's going to cake on that royalty $$$

5. mixedfish

Posts: 1571; Member since: Nov 17, 2013

Quietly innovating

8. SleeperOne

Posts: 370; Member since: Feb 25, 2017

SONY should always be at the forefront of improving Android, as should Blackberry and Nokia.

10. combatmedic870

Posts: 987; Member since: Sep 02, 2015

Well this could be a huge selling point for Sony and their car head units, if the code to add it. Pretty cool stuff. Just wished it work with everything. This may be a bluetooth 5.0 thing as well...

12. cosmin.v

Posts: 48; Member since: Aug 22, 2016

Of course not, LDAC support is already enabled on some of the newer Sony smartphones starting with Xperia X. Bluetooth 5.0 has nothing to do with it, fortunately.

11. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

finally... A high quality wireless audio...

18. avalon2105

Posts: 352; Member since: Jul 12, 2014

Might be decent but don' t expect anything near wired audio quality. Even Sony's engineers were squirming when reporters pressed them on details on how LDAC works. Here is a link for interview at IFA2016.

13. zeppo

Posts: 200; Member since: Jul 21, 2015

Start saving now for that Sony MDR-1000x. What airpod?

14. Podrick

Posts: 1285; Member since: Aug 19, 2015

I hope they'd contribute original stamina mode to AOSP too.

16. AppleIsGod

Posts: 56; Member since: Aug 27, 2012

"contributed", only to make their own LDAC codec popular so they can earn licensing fees from other headphone makers if they decide to use it.

17. cocoy

Posts: 464; Member since: Oct 30, 2015

In reply to post #16 It's business you know? What do you think is the reason why apple opted for the lighting charger than micro usb C or A?

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