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SE Xperia Play

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SE Xperia Play
Xperia Play
SE Xperia Play.jpg
Model Number: See Page
Device Type: Phone
Manufacturer: Sony Ericsson Sony Ericsson-icon.png
Release Date: April 1, 2011
Operating System: Android Android-icon.jpg
Dimensions: 119 x 62 x 16 mm
Weight: 175 g
Display: LED-backlit LCD, capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors, 480 x 854 pixels, 4.0 inches (~245 PPI pixel density)
Chipset: Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM8255 SoC

CPU: Scorpion @ 1 GHz

GPU: Adreno 205 @ 245 MHz

RAM: Not Known
Internal Memory: 1GB (400 MB Available)
Memory Card: MicroSDHC, up to 32gb
Networks: R800a UMTS HSPA 800, 850, 1900, 2100

GSM GPRS/EDGE 850, 900, 1800, 1900

R800at UMTS HSPA 800, 850, 1900, 2100 GSM GPRS/EDGE 850, 900, 1800, 1900

R800i UMTS HSPA 900, 2100 GSM GPRS/EDGE 850, 900, 1800, 1900

R800x CDMA2000®, cdmaOne, EVDO

Wi-fi: 802.11 b/g/n, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot
USB: Not Known
Bluetooth: Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
Video out: No
Camera: 5 MP, 2592х1944 pixels, autofocus, LED flash
Secondary Camera: 0.3 MP VGA
Battery: Standard battery, Li-Ion 1500 mAh
Other features
Additional Features: Integrated Gamepad


White paper for the Sony Xperia Play (All Models)

The Sony Ericsson Xperia Play was the first PlayStation Certified device, codenamed Zeus, first available on 1st April 2011. There are different Version of the Xperia Play:

  • GSM Version - R800a, R800at (AT&T 4G), R800i (International Unlocked)
  • CDMA Version - R800x (Verizon 3G)

The Xperia Play comes in 5 colors/themes. Black (R800x,R800i), White (R800i), Stealth Blue (R800at), Orange (R800i), and Minecraft (R800i).

On May, 25th 2012 Sony Mobile announced on their blog that the Xperia Play would not be receiving an official Android 4.0 update, their reason had been that the update would compromise the stability and main selling point of the device which was gaming (Not a quote). Although other users are resorting to Custom ROMS to experience Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean on their phones (the most popular are Cyanogenmod 9 and the official beta Sony had released) although this requires an unlocked bootloader.

Guides and Tutorials

  • Flash mode and Fastboot mode

The Xperia Play has two low-level ways of interacting with our computers. The first one is called Flash mode, which alllows us to flash complete firmware packages in FTF packages. FTF stands for "FlashTool File", so we need to use the program Flashtool with them. The second one is the Fastboot mode, which we can use for some maintenance operations and changing the kernels of our devices.

  • How to tell them apart?
    • Flash mode - In order to bring your phone to Flash mode, you need to switch it off completely, and connect it to your computer while you hold the BACK key. A GREEN light will be shining in the notification LED while you're in this mode.
    • Fastboot mode - In order to bring your phone to Fastboot mode, you need to switch it off completely, and connect it to your computer while you hold the SEARCH key. A BLUE light will be shining in the notification LED while you're in this mode.


  • What is rooting?

By rooting we general speak of gaining access to the root user on your device. The root user is the user with the highest rights (e.g. administrator) at your phone. Rooting is done by injecting the needed files to be able to switch to root rights. Therefor the common program su (super user) is used.

  • What are the downsides?

In Europe it is completely legal to root and flash your phone. However in the rest of the world rooting you generally voids your warranty with most networks. But since root can be removed later (un-root) and nobody can tell if a phone ever was rooted you just can revert your phone to original state before sending it in.

CWM (Clockwork Mod)

  • What is it good for?

Clockwork Mod is a recovery environment. It lets you do many things starting with doing a system backup, recover later and flashing mods. It is one of the most powerful features of custom roms.

Unlock Bootloader(BL)

  • Why do I need an unlocked Bootloader?

An unlocked Bootloader gives you the ability to flash custom kernels and ROMs. This also gives you the ability to apply modifications to the whole system.

  • Can every Play be unlocked?

Yes, BUT there are some extra steps required for some models. For checking if your Phone can be unlocked please refer to the official guide.

  • Is there any disadvantage?

Unlocking your bootloader using the official method voids your warranty. This CAN'T be undone (Sony will always know that you unlocked your device as they keep a record), but there are methods to relock it anyway. It is possible to unlock the bootloader and not void the warranty using unofficial methods but it would be necessary to relock the bootloader and ensure that you are running the stock firmware before returning it to Sony.

Flashing Roms


These are flashed to update the onboard firmware. From version to version they have the potential to improve signal reception, break all wireless communication, improve battery life, break audio/video playback or even affect the phones ability to boot if flashed improperly. The latest radio for the Xperia Play is the .62 and it is very stable.


Internal Memory

As the Xperia Play is a gaming device you will probably install MANY apps and games on it - since the internal memory is quite limited there are several methods to "extend" it:

Xperia Tweak Tool


OC (OverClocking)

Since we don't have a kernel module for overclocking a custom kernel is needed (needs unlocked BL) Afterwards frequencies can be set with tools like:

Your also can install a custom ROM which already has OC build in.

CPU Governors / Undervoling

  • CPU Governors:

are responsible for the scaling of the CPU frequency. Wich governors are available depends on the installed kernel on your phone. They can be set up by the tool mentioned in OC section.

  • Undervolting:

Undervolting is an attempt to save battery by lowering the CPU voltage for given frequencies. The voltages are either hardcoded in kernel or can be set with the tools mentioned in OC section.



Applications & Games





  • Why do I need another ROM?

Another ROM gives you the ability to a complete new look and feel as well as updated kernels and apps. Even ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich).

  • What are downsides?

Beware not each ROM supports the Xperia Play Keys. Each Rom has different functions and abilities - for propper descriptions please read the instructions in the ROM Threads.

  • Where can I get a ROM?

Xperia Play Android Development


  • When will we see official ICS on our device?

NEVER. Sony Mobile Blog

  • Accessing the Service Menu

In your phone, open the dialer and enter *#*#7378423#*#* to access the service menu.

  • Phone Specifications

Official Full Sony Ericsson Xperia Play Specifications

  • How long does the Battery last and how can I extend battery life?

Sony stated... Stand-by-Up to 425 h (2G) / Up to 413 h (3G). Talk time - Up to 8 h 25 min (2G) / Up to 6 h 25 min (3G). Music play - Up to 31 h. However the actual results vary, as it's all dependent on what you have open on the phone. There are extended 3600mAh batteries (but the device will get much thicker, which a lot of people prefer) or can try to tweak your Xperia (under-volt,...). For tweaking please refer to the section.

  • Do i need a SIM card to play games on the Xperia Play?

No - Just a Gmail account.

  • I heard about Swype being in our ROM?

There is a Swype like function - at least in 2.3.3 ROMs - which can be activated through: Settings > Language & Keyboard > International Keyboard > Text input settings -> activate Swype

Information to be extracted