I wrote yesterday how HTC have reconfirmed their pledge that their 2013 and 2014 flagship One devices are going to be getting the Android Lollipop (to carriers) update within ninety days and we’ve now seen HTC putting a One M8 model, described as 0P6B, through the official Bluetooth website where it’s already been certified running Android 5.0 Lollipop. This doesn’t mean that our Sense-equipped HTC One devices will be getting the update in middle of November but instead, it shows that HTC are serious about getting the update onto the devices. You see, telling customers that their device will get the update and then delivering the goods are two important steps in winning our hearts and minds. As to these devices, let’s take a quick refresh starting with the original One M7. This is based around a quad core 1.7 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor paired up with 2 GB of RAM. It has a 4.7-inch 1080p display, a 2,300 mAh battery, a 4 MP rear camera that uses HTC’s UltraPixel technology (larger than typical pixels in the camera sensor to improve low light performance) with optical image stabilization, 4G LTE, NFC and a beautifully made, aluminum unibody design. It comes with 32 GB of onboard storage and no MicroSD slot. The One also comes with HTC’s dedicated amplifier and speaker combination, called BoomSound. The 2014 One M8 sticks with a aluminum body but has been lengthened, using a 5.0-inch, 1080p display and a quad core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor of either 2.3 GHz (most markets) or 2.5 GHz (some Asian markets). The rear camera is similar but loses the optical image stabilization, the battery capacity is increased to 2,600 mAh and there’s now a MicroSD slot to boost the 16 or 32 GB of onboard memory. To my mind, both are beautiful devices to use and carry.
The full size One devices were followed by smaller One Mini models and in 2013, HTC also released the HTC Max. We’re yet to see a 2014 HTC One Max. In the case of the Mini models, these are smaller and lesser powered whereas the Max used a larger screen but near identical internal hardware specifications to the One M7 apart from a massive battery. The One launched with HTC Sense 5, which has since been upgraded to Sense 6. Sense has been around since almost the start of Android and has changed much through the years; in the latest guise, Sense is speedy and responsive and whilst it doesn’t offer as many features as say Samsung TouchWiz, it’s also simpler to work (especially in the Settings department). Most of HTC’s devices have Sense of one sort or another apart from their Nexus devices and a long-forgotten Facebook handset. We don’t know how HTC will change Sense to suit Android Lollipop or indeed if they’ll make the jump from Sense 6 to Sense 7 in 2015, but this seems logical enough.
I suspect that this is the first of many little announcements and evidence that HTC, and indeed the other manufacturers, are working on Android Lollipop for their 2013 and 2014 flagship models. It’s going to be a very exciting end of year.