updated 08:16 am EDT, Thu May 16, 2013
HTC not planning stock Android version of HTC One
HTC has said that it isn't planning to issue a version of the HTC One running stock Android. The company issued a statement on the matter following the surprise, but long awaited, announcement at Google I/O that it will be selling a version of the Samsung Galaxy S4 running stock Android. "HTC is not currently planning a 'Nexus Edition' of the HTC One," said an HTC company spokesperson.
Power users who have wanted versions top line Android smartphones to run stock versions of Android finally had their wish granted with Google's announcement on the Galaxy S4 - the announcement was met with cheers from developers in attendance at the Google keynote. Google will begin selling 'Google Edition' of the Galaxy S4 through the Google Play store from June 26 for $649 off-contract. It will also come with an unlocked bootloader giving users the opportunity to easily install custom Android ROMs on the device without resorting to complicated hacking processes.
HTC has previously worked closely with Google on the development of the original Nexus smartphone. However, it is currently shipping the HTC One with Sense 5, the latest version of its own custom Android software. While some reviewers have been critical of TouchWiz running on the non-stock Galaxy S4, which is buggy and bloated with unnecessary feature enhancements, they have been more kind to HTCs cleaner implementation of Android on the HTC One.
HTC also ships a 'Developer Edition' of the HTC One in the US, also for $649 off-contract. Although it does not include a stock version of Android, it does come with an unlocked bootloader making stock Android installation possible. By comparison, it is a better deal than the Galaxy S4 'Google Edition' as it comes with 64GB of built-in storage versus the 16GB of onboard storage for the Galaxy S4 'Google Edition.' [via Ausdroid]