Unlocking the boot loader

We’re supporting the open developer community

The open developer community is important to us at Sony, and we have therefore made it possible to unlock the boot loader for certain releases of Xperia™ devices from 2011 and onwards. To find out what models are supported by this service, please see the Supported devices page to the left.

However, even if the device model is supported, certain releases of the device model may not be supported due to operator restrictions. To check if your device can be unlocked, go through the first two steps on the page.

Important information

Please note that you may void the warranty of your device and/or any warranty from your operator if you unlock the boot loader. See your device's warranty statement for details. Additionally, due to the modified device software, Sony’s repair network will likely have to replace key components before it can properly test, repair and verify your device using our repair tools and software. Consequently, if Sony performs a warranty repair, Sony will likely charge you a significant service fee for the additional costs caused by your modification of the software.

Sony can no longer guarantee the full functionality of your device, and will not be responsible for any unsigned custom software being flashed to the device after the boot loader is unlocked. Certain functions in your device might cease to work, and performance might not be ideal. You might also damage your device permanently. In the worst case, unlocking the boot loader will cause physical injuries or material damage, for example, due to the device overheating.

Certain content on your device may also be inaccessible due to the removal of DRM security keys and the secure user data partition while unlocking the boot loader. We advise you to create backups, since user data, settings and accounts will be removed. For Xperia™ devices released 2013 or later (for example Xperia™ Z and Xperia™ ZL), the SD card of your device will be formatted and you will lose all content (for example photos, music, videos) when you unlock the boot loader.

With all of the above in mind, you should only unlock the boot loader of your device if you are an advanced user with good knowledge of the technology and risks involved. We recommend standard users not to unlock the boot loader, as it is not needed. We are proud to deliver great software experiences through our rigorously tested and official software releases.

If you are fully aware of the risks involved, and have a deep knowledge about these technologies, continue to the unlock boot loader instructions page. You should be aware that unlocking the boot loader will not give you root access. The only way to get root access is to flash a custom ROM with root access.

For any questions, we will monitor this thread on Google groups. However, we cannot guarantee an answer for every question asked in this forum. If you want additional assistance, check out the FreeXperia developer thread on the XDA-forum. Please note that this is an external forum, not run by Sony.

Also note that there is no turning back once you have unlocked the boot loader. You will not be able to revert the device to a locked or original state if you unlock it. In addition, if you brick the device, it is your own responsibility. Note that you will not receive any official software upgrades if you unlock your device.

Known issues

  • To unlock the Xperia™ Z1 boot loader, you must make sure your device is on software build 14.2.A.0.290 (Android 4.3) or later. Unlocking the boot loader on earlier software versions will stop the camera functionality.
  • Some customers with unlocked boot loaders have experienced problems when they are accepting over the air upgrades (FOTA - Firmware upgrade Over The Air). For customers that have unlocked the boot loader, please do not accept any over the air upgrades. For additional information, check out the hints and tips from the community on the XDA forum.

Start unlocking the boot loader