updated 06:05 am EDT, Wed October 19, 2011
HTC hints at Android 4.0 updates
HTC has issued an official response (embedded below) to the launch of Google's Android 4.0 operating system. Although the launch centered on rival Samsung's Galaxy Nexus hardware, which will also be first to market, HTC has acknowledged that its existing customers will be keen to get their hands on the new features announced by Google. However, the company has not offered any timeframe for when the operating system upgrades, which have traditionally taken months to arrive after Google has posted the source code for the OS.
HTC's statement reads:
"We are excited about the latest update for Android, Ice Cream Sandwich, and are currently reviewing its features and functionality to determine our upgrade plans. Our goal for Android updates is to give every customer an improved user experience, which means balancing each phone's unique hardware, HTC Sense experience and the Android kernel."
"While our goal is to upgrade as many of our recent devices as possible, we are committed to maintaining every phone's performance and usability first. Please stay tuned for more updates on specific device upgrade plans."
Although not intended to highlight a weakness in the Android platform, HTC's statement is an admission that the skinning of the plain vanilla Android OS is not a straightforward process and can create numerous problems for manufacturers who have multiple handsets with different hardware features.
The process can often take months as bugs need to be ironed out and carriers around the globe often require certain functions and or apps to be tailored to their needs. Beyond this, HTC's engineers and those employed by the carriers often spend weeks testing the software updates in the field before they are released to end users.