The latest version of Google's Android software, 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich may have been released late in 2011 but when will your HTC smartphone get it?
The good news is that HTC has been somewhat proactive compared to many other manufacturers when it comes to software updates. It has already updated Australia's first 4G smartphone — the Velocity 4G — to Ice Cream Sandwich, while users with a HTC Sensation XE or HTC Sensation XL smartphone on the Vodafone network should see the update very shortly.
Although HTC has begun the update rollout, most of these software updates will take a significant amount of time. The popular HTC Desire HD handset isn't likely to receive the ICS update until July or August, for example. We detailed why this isn't the case in our feature on why it takes so long for Android phones to receive the latest software updates.
HTC has gone a step further and published a dedicated Android 4.0 update FAQ on its global Web site. The blog details when each of its smartphones will receive the ICS update and why the process takes so long.
"The majority of devices will receive upgrades in June and July 2012 and we expect to finish upgrades in August 2012 for all announced devices," the HTC blog reads. "Because of partner and network testing, and approval processes for device updates, it can take up to 45 days for all carriers and countries to get the update after a rollout has begun."
HTC is keen to point out that the dates published are merely targets rather than a guaranteed time frame. "These dates are targets and may shift due to testing and approvals," it says.
In addition, not all HTC phones released in Australia will receive the update. Australian models that won't be updated to Ice Cream Sandwich include the HTC Desire Z, HTC ChaCha, HTC Salsa, HTC Wildfire S and the HTC Explorer.
"We work hard to ensure each of our products has the optimal user experience and therefore some products will remain at their current version of Android," HTC explained. "In general, devices with 512MB ROM or less will not be upgraded to Android 4.0. Upgrades are not the same thing as ongoing support. Devices not being upgraded to Android 4.0 will still get software improvements, security fixes, and technical support as needed."
All Android 4.0 updates will include HTC Sense 3.6 and not the latest Sense 4 version seen on the HTC One X, One XL and the One S. HTC says Sense 4 "requires dedicated hardware, which is not available on all devices."
We have compiled HTC's ICS upgrade information into a convenient table below for your reference and will keep it updated as local information comes to hand.
HTC's Australian Ice Cream Sandwich update schedule:
|HTC Velocity 4G|
|HTC Sensation XE|
|HTC Sensation XL|
|HTC EVO 3D|
|HTC Wildfire S|
|HTC Desire S|
|HTC Incredible S|
|HTC Desire Z|
|HTC Desire HD|