HTC Avoids Android 4.0 Uprising – Ice Cream Sandwich Coming to Most Devices

by: Will G.October 23, 2011

Several days ago, right after the Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) was displayed publicly for the first time, HTC announced that they had to “figure out what they had to do about Android 4.0.” This comment left many HTC owners on edge, as their statement was ambiguous and didn’t answer whether HTC devices would be receiving Android 4.0 or not.

However, some good news has since been revealed after that mini-catastrophic public relations nightmare, and HTC has since stated the following:

“Since Google unveiled Ice Cream Sandwich earlier this week, HTC has been looking closely at the new OS’s features and functionality to determine our upgrade plans. We’re a recognized industry leader in providing fast and consistent upgrades to our Android devices, and Ice Cream Sandwich will be no different.

Upgrades require a careful balance of hardware and software to ensure the best possible performance and usability, so please stay tuned as we assess our product portfolio. Our goal is to upgrade as many HTC devices as possible and we’ll be sharing details on specific devices and timing in the coming weeks!”

There had been substantial speculation on the time frame of when HTC – and any other manufacturers’ – devices will get Ice Cream Sandwich. Many are speculating that older phones, like the Desire HD, could never be upgraded at all, and be left to the imaginative coding of 3rd party developers to make it reality for those looking to get more life out of their aging Androids. Apparently though, for the majority of devices, owners will be looking at a 6 month approximate time frame before they see Ice Cream Sandwich Android 4.0 on their device.

There’s no question about it — HTC has a situation on their hands, but their reasoning for the delay was so that they can take the time on getting the right updates for the right phones, as well as provide the best experience without any first time “glitches or bugs”.

It seems that HTC was unprepared for this launch, and is rushing to make their move. However, it is good that they are taking their time to get errors out before the over the air update.

It remains to be seen as to whether HTC will continue with their Sense custom overlay. Still – of the many out there – it is considered the best, and has been a strong selling point and differentiator for HTC. Chances are, they are scrambling to get a new build out the door – that will play nice not only with Android 4.0 – but their older hardware as well. Considering they are one of the largest Android developers out there – I have no doubt they will pull it off.

Do you think your HTC device will receive Android 4.0? Do you believe in HTC’s delay? Let us know in your comments!

  • Roger

    How manufacturers deal with this upgrade cycle and devices that aren’t the newest will determine who the manufacturer of my next Android phone will be. There are a sufficiently large number of phones out there running 2.2 and 2.3 that consumers will be able to meaningfully see how early they get abandoned by a manufacturer.

    This will actually be the most important criteria to me for my next phone with next being things like having an SD card slot, screen size etc.

    • Anonymous

      I just make sure the phone is rootable and let XDA handle the rest. Those devs seem to be better and faster than the manufactures devs anyway.

      • Roger

        I’m an Android developer so I need to ensure that my phone has the regular Google/Android warts. Cyanogenmod and similar replacements have a tendency to go in and fix bugs and annoying quirks, but I have to keep them present.

        I really wish there was a way to dual boot so I could CM for my day to day usage and reboot into stock during development.

  • if manufactures aren’t going to release an update themselves due to custom gui’s not working on newer devices, the should provide full root for those devices and an easy method anyone could run to update to a ROM like CM. Manu’s could even contribute some cash to those projects to ensure their older devices and their customers continue to get some kind of EOL support.

  • Joeyhuntzinger

    Please don’t use – so many – dashes. It can be hard – to read – your article.

    • Anonymous

      Sorry bud. Editors choice, not mine.

      • Ratzinger

        You mean it was *purposefully* edited into that condition?

        Looks like the editor needs to learn when to use em dashes properly; commas too.

        • Anonymous

          Who cares? Let’s talk about Android related stuff.

  • I really hope my Sensation 4G gets it, soon!

  • timbck2

    I’m certainly hoping for it on my HTC Incredible!

    • Anonymous

      Same here. If not, developers will find a way to make us happy =)

  • john

    I’m not holding my breath for the G2 to see it. Once a Cyanogen version of ICS comes out, I’ll flash that.

  • blue horseshoe loves…

    the reason i chose a htc manuf’d device over a samsung manuf’d device was (my understanding of) samsung’s relatively slow (or nonexistent) update roll-outs. hope that i made the correct choice…

    • I prefer HTC over samsung because I think HTC makes better quality products and they do send out updates quicker then most other manufacturers.

      I also love HTC sense 3.0

  • Anonymous

    I felt a bit sorry for HTC at the launch the other day. Samsung were there and Google and after the big unveiling it was like HTC had to respond as the outcast that didn’t get invited to the coolest party in town.

    Moving forward I think there’s some urgent need of streamlining. The whole situation has been made worse by the fact that HTC can sell the same handset pretty much anywhere in the world but when it comes to the US the carriers all seem to be insistent on having their owned packed and branded variate of the same phone.

    So here’s what needs to happen:

    HTC make 1 version of a phone
    They release core ICS to as many handsets as possible
    They make Sense available from as an ADDON pack for anyone that wants it on their handset
    They get the US carriers to follow suit and make their own addon packs if they insist on being different.

    To me this makes sense as the streamlining and simplifying support for their handset collection must ultimately make it easier to administer allowing then to get updates out faster.

    • Anonymous

      +1 exactly what I was talking about. This would be the best approach to me.if you want stock android, you’re taken care of.if you want sense on top, you’re taken care of. This would seed things up tremendously.

  • Anonymous

    I have a sensation and I’m more than sure it’ll get the update, but by then ill already own a galaxy nexus. I really wish HTC would give you a choice of stock 4.0 or 4.0 with sense. You could get 4.0 alot sooner or wait to get 4.0 with sense. I know, I’m dreaming, but I really dislike sense. And stock ICS is soo beautiful, why would you want sense skinned over it?

  • Anonymous

    I believe updating devices from 2 years ago should be done for every new version of android. What i mean is, this year (2011) ICS came out, so devices from 2009 should be the earliest devices they update (and by early, i mean came out earlier than phones in 2010 and 2011). So, when 2012 comes, phones as early as 2010 will get the updates. I’m basing all of this one two year contract agreements. I believe that it will take companies some time to integrate because one thing ICS does away with is the button. All Android phones that are out have physical buttons (4 of them), so how do they integrate it. It sounds easy, but from a developers stand point, it’s medium difficulty (depending on the knowledge of the developer). Also, if i recall correctly, Google said that ICS is optimized to utilize the 2 cores on dual core processor phones/tablets, so for those that have single core, what must be done. I’m an Android fan, but I give credit where credit is due. Apple, by far, has the best roll outs for updates (they may not be so smooth, but they work on it to get it right for every update). The reason for that is that the hardware and software are the same on their products (iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch specifically), so the updates are easier to integrate. However, not all Android phones use stock android (we all know this). So for developers to integrate ICS with HTC Sense, Samsung Touchwiz, etc., it will take some time to do and get it right (without many bugs), so I’ll be patient and understanding while i wait for ICS. If I don’t get it, ROOTING, here i come (although im already rooted, just gotta add the ICS rom)

  • Juands42

    well if htc doesn’t do their part i will hv to root my sensation and will be my last htc then, will look for a brand that keep me up to date in cell os.