Reverting Xperia device to Android OS and reinstalling Sailfish OS

Jolla Care -


It has turned out that the following procedure may help if something has gone wrong while preparing the device for Sailfish OS and/or while installing Sailfish OS.

These instructions were originally written for Xperia X. However, the same works for Xperia XA2 and Xperia 10 models, too.


1. This is our plan

2. Reverting Xperia back to Android

2.1. Connect and get Emma

2.2 Downloading and installing the latest baseband version

3. Checking that the phone works with Android

4. Installing Sailfish X again to Xperia X, XA2 or 10

5. Boot up to Sailfish OS

Depending on the problems observed on your Xperia, it may be enough to reinstall ("reflash") Sailfish OS to it -- see this help article. However, if your Xperia cannot use the services of cellular network properly (or at all), then it may be necessary to revert the device back to Android first, and finally, reinstall Sailfish X.

NOTE: Reverting the device back to Android means that all data in the device memory will be deleted. Only the SD and SIM cards remain untouched.



1. This is our plan

  • revert the device back to Android OS first
  • use your device and your SIM card with Android OS, mobile data in particular
  • re-flash Sailfish OS to the device.



2. Reverting Xperia back to Android



2.1. Connect and get Emma

Reverting Xperia device back to Android requires the Emma tool from Sony. Emma requires a Windows PC to run. It does not work in Linux or Mac computers.

Follow chapter 1, option 2 in our official Sailfish X instructions (the Windows version for Xperia X). Please note that even if you have an Xperia XA2 or Xperia 10, you should follow the instructions of Xperia X for using Emma (but only this part, using Emma).

Install Emma. Once done, you will use it to download the Android OS and then to install it to your Xperia device. The download size is about 2.5-3 GB, so reserve time and wait patiently.

Now, open Emma. Turn your Xperia off. Keep the Volume DOWN button pressed when connecting the USB data cable between the phone and PC, and you must see GREEN light on the Xperia.



2.2 Downloading and installing the latest baseband version

See picture 1a1 below. It shows the Emma view on PC once you have connected Xperia X and requested the list of available Android services (i.e., after you have clicked on "All services" button or "View all" button).  Pictures 1a2 and 1a3 have the corresponding views for Xperia XA2 and Xperia 10 Plus, respectively.

Select the Android baseband version (or "service" as they are called in Emma) according to the table below. The corresponding Android versions shown in the phone settings are in parentheses.
As of January 2020, the latest services were as below but note that the exact version ID's can vary by model (regular/Plus/Ultra) and by sales area. The first part of the ID (in bold letters) is significant and should be followed (anything after the letter A may vary - and does not matter in this context):

Xperia X 34.4.A.2.118 (Android 8)
Xperia XA2 50.2.A.0.400 (Android 9)
50.1.A.13.123 (Android 8)  (*)
Xperia 10 53.0.A.8.69 (Android 9) (**)

(*) We recommend Android 9 for Sailfish 3.3.0 and later. Baseband version 50.3.A.z.y might become available. Do not take it as it corresponds to Android 10, the compatibility with Sailfish has not been tested.
(**) Do not install Android 10 as Sailfish is not yet compatible with it. Baseband versions
53.1.A.x.y imply Android 10, so do not install them with Emma.

If there are two code packages with the same version ID, choose the one with type "Software Update Content Erase" (instead of "Firmware update"), please. This is to force all possible changes in place.



Picture 1a1.  Initial Emma view from Xperia X


Picture 1a2:  Initial Emma view from Xperia XA2



Picture 1a3:  Initial Emma view from Xperia 10 Plus


Then click "Apply service". Emma starts to download the update which lasts quite a while as the size is about 2.6 GB (see picture 1b). Once downloaded, click the button at the bottom right corner to install the code to your Xperia.



Picture 1b.


Picture 1c.

Picture 1c above shows how the downloaded software is being flashed to an Xperia X. Picture 1d below indicates that the job was completed successfully. Picture 1e shows that Android 9 (build version 50.2.A.0.400) was successfully installed to an Xperia XA2.



Picture 1d.



 Picture 1e.



3. Checking that the phone works with Android

Detach the USB data cable from the device now. Start the device with the Power button and run the Android start-up routine where you can skip as many steps as possible (as you will soon install Sailfish OS).

Please note that it takes quite a while (minutes) before the Android start-up routine appears (other than a spinner).

Use your Xperia device some time with Android OS. Check the following, at least:

  • phone calls can be made and received -- you can hear the remote party and (s)he can hear you
  • browsing the internet with a mobile data connection (WLAN turned off) works
  • browsing the internet with WLAN (mobile data turned off) works
  • take pictures with the camera
  • turn the location service (satellite-based position) on and check that the phone can show your location on a map
  • play some music
  • ensure that the touch display is responsive at all parts of the display

    See picture 2 below. Do not forget to check that your phone has now the intended Android version. So, open the menu page Settings > System > About phone. Check the Android version and build number.


Picture 2.



4. Installing Sailfish X again to Xperia X, XA2 or 10

Installing Sailfish can be made with Windows, Linux or Mac computers. In the next chapters, we have pointers to our official Sailfish X instructions.

Make sure you have the latest available Sailfish OS version downloaded to your computer and that the Sailfish variant is the correct one for your phone model. You can check the model by pulling out a white label from the SIM card slot, listing the info (e.g. H3113 or I4213).

The latest Sailfish OS version is always available in this repository and can be downloaded from there. Please sign in to this service by using the same Jolla account that you used for buying the Sailfish X license.

Check that the contents of your Sailfish OS directory are similar to that in pictures 3a or 3b below. Note that there are two different install files for the single SIM and dual SIM Xperia X devices, and six different install files for various Xperia XA2 devices and four files for Xperia 10 devices - please ensure that you select and download the correct one for your device.



Picture 3a:  Sony Xperia X single SIM (f5121)




Picture 3b:  Sony Xperia XA2 dual SIM (H4113)


In particular, check that you have file "SW_binaries_for_Xperia_Android*.img" there. If missing, select the instructions applicable to you :

  • for Xperia X:      SW_binaries_for_Xperia_AOSP_M_MR1_3.10_v13_loire.img
    (if missing, visit chapter 5: Windows, Linux, Mac )
  • for Xperia XA2:  SW_binaries_for_Xperia_Android_8.1.6.4_r1_v16_nile.img
    (if missing, visit chapter 5: Windows2, Linux2, Mac2 )
  • for Xperia 10:  SW_binaries_for_Xperia_Android_9.0_2.3.2_v9_ganges.img
    (if missing, visit chapter
    5Windows2, Linux2, Mac2 )


Install (flash) Sailfish OS  to your Xperia. Select the instructions applicable to you :

NOTE: It is Volume UP button this time and you must see the BLUE light (if green, disconnect, reconnect and try again - press the button gently).

After you have completed flashing, the printout similar to that shown in the attached PDF file should appear on your computer screen (Sailfish OS version ID will be different as time goes on).



5. Booting up to Sailfish OS

You can now turn your Xperia on by pressing the Power key. Let it then run initial start up of Sailfish OS.

First, you will see a reminder of an unlocked boot loader, which can be ignored, followed by the Sony logo and then Sailfish OS.

Sign in to your Jolla account in order to get the Android App Support and other licensed content. The Jolla account should be the same as you used when purchasing the Sailfish X licence.

Next, you can install more Sailfish apps from Jolla store or Android apps from stores like APKPure or Aptoide.



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