Fragmentation. The word most commonly used by Android naysayers when they’re looking for some ammunition with which to open fire on the world’s most popular mobile operating system. The problem is that the issue is very real, it’s certainly a large part of the reason why I personally only use Nexus devices these days. Whilst much of the vitriol is aimed at Google, it’s actually the manufacturers and their UI skins that we’re at the mercy of. The latest big player to cause a hullabaloo in the tech world this week is none other than HTC. The Taiwanese giant upset a large group of its customers by announcing that the, barely 18 months old, Desire HD will not be receiving an update to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. The announcement sparked a huge influx of complaints from disappointed Desire HD owners and in turn prompted the following response from HTC:
We’ve heard your feedback on our decision not to update the HTC Desire HD to Android 4.0. We completely understand that this is a controversial decision.
For more background, due to how storage on the HTC Desire HD is partitioned – and the larger size of Android 4.0 – it would require re-partitioning device storage and overwriting user data in order to install this update. While technically advanced users might find this solution acceptable, the majority of customers would not. We also considered ways to reduce the overall size of the software package, but this would impact features and functionality that customers are currently using. Even after installing the update, there were other technical limitations which we felt negatively impacted the user experience.
We believe an update should always improve the user experience and carefully evaluate each update based on this criteria. While we are very aware of the disappointment from this decision, we believe the impact to user experience was too great. We recognize this is a change from our previous statement and for that we’re truly sorry.
It’s encouraging that HTC care enough to take the time to explain its actions however I’m fairly sure that the words will do little to soften the blow. Once again it will be down to the developer community to pick up the slack and offer Desire HD owners some Ice Cream Sandwich goodness (Just don’t mention Jelly Bean!)
Canadian carrier TELUS had mentioned last week that the Android 4.0 upgrade for the HTC Desire HD had been canceled, citing “poor device performance in testing.” Since Ice Cream Sandwich has been known to run fine on many devices with lower specs, this raised a few eyebrows. The fine folks over at Android Central felt the same way and decided to reach out to HTC to get the skinny.
Here’s what HTC told them:
“We remain committed to providing customers with the latest software updates when possible. As such, we are pleased to confirm we are still on schedule to deliver an Ice Cream Sandwich upgrade for both the HTC Desire HD and Desire S.“
So TELUS apparently didn’t get that memo. Looks like the Desire HD and Desire S both have a little more life left in them. That’s good news.
source: android central
It seems that HTC is always in the news for one security scare or another. Well you can add this to the pile as HTC has acknowledged that a bug/exploit can expose security credentials on wifi networks when their devices handle specific Android requests.
It was found that applications on affected HTC devices with the android.permission.ACCESS_WIFI_STATE permission would be able to exploit the .toString() command via the WifiConfiguration class to view all of a wifi network’s credentials. Combine this with the android.permission.INTERNET permission and hackers could have a field day in harvesting these details and sending them off to a remote server. These exploits happened to be found by researchers Chris Hessing and Bret Jordan.
We’ve gotten a number of emails from our friends up north telling us they received the Android 2.3.5 Gingerbread update for the Telus HTC Desire HD, The enhancements include:
- HTC Sense 3.0 (improved Calendar, Messages, Camera, Gallery, Music, Weather, Lock Screen, Reader, and more)
- HTC Watch – Rent or buy the latest movies and/or shows
- Google Video Chat
- Improved stability
If you haven’t received the update yet, you can check to see if you can manually pull it by going to Settings/About Phone/System Updates. Please let us know in the comments if you received the update and how things are working.
HTC has been on a quest if you will, to further support the development community by bringing the ability to unlock your phone’s bootloader. In my opinion this is a quest that more phone manufacturers should join (hint, hint Motorola). Well if you were one of the lucky ones to purchase an HTC phone after September of last year then chances are your bootloader is unlocked and if you weren’t and are stuck with an older model, fret not, as HTC is showing some love to their older devices. Yesterday the HTCdev Twitter Account announced that the Desire HD, other Desire models and both the Wildfire and Wildfire S now have Bootloader Unlock support.
As you know, unlocking your bootloader and all related problems are at your own risk as unlocking your bootloader voids your warranty. If you are up for an upgrade or are ready for a new phone I recommend the HTC Rezound as it’s now only $199.99 on 2-year contract and as HTC announced, the bootloader is unlockable leading to some pretty awesome ROMs and MODs down the road. If you don’t have Bootloader Unlock support yet keep looking on the HTCdev site because eventually your phone may see this support. Enjoy!
Even with releasing their new phones (like the Rezound), HTC is showing some love to their older ones. Multiple users have reported that the Desire HD and Incredible S have both received updates to Android 2.3.5 with Sense 3.0, which puts them right up there with the likes of the Sensation and EVO 3D. Before this update, people were stuck with having to root these devices if they wanted these features. The Wildfire S also received some love. While it did not get bumped to 3.0 (it has Sense 2.1), it did receive the Android 2.3.5 push with the Sense 3.0 lockscreen.
While there is no word if the Incredible 2 will receive this update in the future or not. If you have any of these three phones however, and haven’t received the update just yet, head to Settings>About Phone>Software Updates to see if it’s available. For those that have it, what do you think? Is it amazing?
[via Android Central]
Last week, the HTC Desire HD got Sense 3.5 and now the Incredibles are next in line. A 13 man team over at XDA is giving it their all to successfully port Sense 3.5, and as evidenced by the screenshots they’re off to a good start. The team has got the ROM booting and have squashed a ton of bugs over the past couple of days. The team acknowledges the high demand, but with the project having only been unveiled last week, they haven’t got any ETAs, Beta tests, or download links; yet.
One more pic after the break
HTC has partnered with Orange UK to get their HTC Desire HD owners onto a better Android OS with an update for Android 2.3 Gingerbread rolling right now. The update should be OTA, so if you’re with Orange UK sporting a Desire HD Chocolate, check your notifications and taste that sweet Gingerbread goodness!
Just as a reminder, any time you’re about to install an update, it’s best practice to backup your apps and your OS just in case. I recommend Titanium backup for your apps which you can grab here for free. You’ll also need to root your device to use Titanium among many other awesome apps. You can follow here to get it rooted.
Once again, the developers over at xda have brought us something far earlier than the companies wanted. capychimp and rmk40 over at xda have developed a ROM for the Desire HD and the Desire Z (and the G2 and Inspire 4G) based off the leaked HTC Kingdom Gingerbread build. Enter the Fusion ROM. Running Sense 3.0 and Gingerbread (2.3.3) it’s a beauty. It’s 100% working and it should be around until the actual Sense 3.0 update comes to the devices (if ever). Some of the features included are:
Good news for you if you own an HTC Desire HD or an Incredible S! As expected, there’s some Gingerbread love coming your way in the form of an OTA upgrade. HTC has announced via their support page that they have begun rolling out the 2.3 update for both devices. So keep checking your device for updates! Android 2.3 will be a most welcomed addition to these high end devices, offering support tools for gamaing, NFC and better multimedia capabilities. Hit the break for a quick video demo of Android 2.3’s features and highlights.