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FreeXperia developers get hacking help from Sony Ericsson

Your ability to root and customize your Android phone isn't exactly a secret, but manufacturers have typically not been on board with the practice. Slowly but surely, though, manufacturers of Android phones are getting on the rooting train — HTC unlocked its bootloaders, and Samsung actually hired Cyanogen founder Steve Kondik — and now Sony Ericsson is coming around too. In a recent blog post, The company noted it has provided 20 free Sony Ericsson phones to a group of developers called FreeXperia who are working to root and customize the Xperia Play and Xperia Arc, among other devices. Sony Ericsson also provided debugged camera binaries and plenty of explanations regarding "proprietary solutions" in the software and hardware, some of which will be made available to developers in general under a special EULA. It's a nice gesture from Sony Ericsson, and it's smart to support the development community that is such a key part of Android's popularity — though the post does mention three times that you will void your warranty by rooting your phone. We're not quite at a harmonious union between manufacturers and third-party developers, but both parties seem to be moving in the right direction.