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Don't count on me, says HTC

In a troubling sign, HTC Corp. (TPE:2498) has officially killed updates support for One S Android smartphone, long before its second birthday even arrived.  The mid-range smartphone had first aired back in Feb. 2012, going on sale at the start of April 2012.  Just 15 months in, and owners already find themselves no longer receiving critical security and usability updates.

In a post HTC writes:

We can confirm that the HTC One S will not receive further Android OS updates and will remain on the current version of Android and HTC Sense. We realize this news will be met with disappointment by some, but our customers should feel confident that we have designed the HTC One S to be optimized with our amazing camera and audio experiences.

The year old device will now be stuck on Android v4.1.1 Jelly Bean.  Android v4.2 Jelly Bean v2 came out in Nov. 2012 -- just a little over half a year after the One S went on sale.  But it appears HTC will never work with carriers to officially push this update to customers. 
 
HTC One S

The problem of slow-to-nonexistent updates has been a much discussed issue with Android and has even sparked lawsuits.  But companies seem intent on continuing to abandon support for Android devices midway through their lifespan leaving customers to fend for themselves or be "confident" in settling for aging interfaces.

It is unclear whether the HTC One X and One V, which launched alongside the One S, will share in this updateless purgatory.  What is clear is that the only HTC handset to have the promise of life-long updates (until the hardware can no longer support it) is the HTC One Google Play edition, which ships direct from Google Inc. (GOOG) unlocked.

Source: HTC via Engadget



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By piroroadkill on 7/5/2013 3:51:45 AM , Rating: 4
You all have to remember that they made the first Android phone, they used to be extremely popular in the days of the Nexus One/Desire...

But then they muddied the waters by constantly bringing out a smattering of slightly half-hearted products, that never received future support.

One was supposed to change that, but honestly, the lack of microSD in the high IMMEDIATELY killed any interest I had, and probably the interest of any old HTC fan.

Then they say my Desire HD was going to get updated, then they said no.

Now even phones in their One line are not getting updates?

There you go, HTC, that's exactly how you kill off any loyal customers. That, right there is your problem - playing the short game, ignoring feature requests and so on.




By ReloadAO on 7/5/2013 5:56:47 AM , Rating: 3
Desire HD, I remember that fail. I gave it to my sister, with perfect working custom Jelly Bean ROM.

And from that time none of my friends nor family bought HTC.
Feel the wrath of negative propaganda, HTC!


By piroroadkill on 7/5/2013 6:46:41 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah, I didn't mind the phone, I thought the build was good, but clearly HTC's support was awful.

I still have it knocking around, but I replaced it with a Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX HD.


By Samus on 7/5/2013 9:41:02 AM , Rating: 2
That's right, the HTC Dream (Google G1) was the first Android phone. It received updates for two years through Cupcake and Donut (v1.5-v1.6) and because the hardware was considered too slow for Eclair or Froyo, it only received unofficial ports of those OS's.

That phone was amazing for its time. Coming from an HTC that was riddled with problematic Windows Mobile phones this was a totally new direction. Every part of it from the best slider keyboard I've ever used (backlit as well) to a well implemented led-trackball. You could also stick in an extended battery pack/battery cover and have 3 full days of power, even when overclocked.

Unfortunately they've lost their willingness to support phones, and that scares people away. Not everyone wants to run Cyanogen or "pure Android" because Touchwiz and Sense to have some great features.


By bug77 on 7/5/2013 11:10:13 AM , Rating: 2
First of all, One S was never a "cheap ass phone".
Second, HTC software is buggy. To the level they forgot some stuff on debug and it was logging location data like crazy. That's why they need to update.
Fwiw, I never got an update for the problem I just mentioned, therefore I will not touch HTC again.


By retrospooty on 7/5/2013 11:17:45 AM , Rating: 2
LOL... Sorry, to me a mid range phone is cheap assed... And you are right if there is a bug, it should be fixed. I was just referring to getting OS updates that everyone is complaining about. Mid range phones dont get them in general. I am not aware of any mid range phone getting updates 2 years after release. If there are a few, they are exceptions, not the norm.


By bug77 on 7/5/2013 11:42:55 AM , Rating: 2
So, it's ok to release buggy software and pretend nothing has happened, as long as the buggy software is on mid-range phone? I'd say no, HTC (and every other maker) should fix their damn bugs for as long as they sell the model plus the warranty period expires. At least.
Either that, or give us plain Android.

quote:
Sorry, to me a mid range phone is cheap assed


How come? A mid range phone can set you back $300+ without a contract.


By retrospooty on 7/5/2013 12:09:08 PM , Rating: 2
"So, it's ok to release buggy software and pretend nothing has happened, as long as the buggy software is on mid-range phone?"

That is not at all what I said... I said "you are right if there is a bug, it should be fixed"

I also said I was referring to getting OS updates on mid range phones. Are you aware of any mid range phones from any maker on any OS getting OS updates for 2 years? It came out on Android 4 Ice Cream Sammy, and it did get a Jelly Bean update.


By Mitch101 on 7/5/2013 12:12:12 PM , Rating: 3
Apparently he never owned a Samsuck Epic 4G and ran into the wonderful inability to sync/update the device using the USB port on any computer. We want to talk about crappy software Samsung doesn't even appear to offer that garbage software app on their site anymore apparently they even know it was useless.


By bug77 on 7/5/2013 12:17:30 PM , Rating: 3
Ha, my wife has a Samsung. Can't connect it to the computer because the newer software doesn't recognize it and the older software (which should recognize it) doesn't work on 64bit.
So yes, as long as crappy software is concerned, the race is tight.


By Mitch101 on 7/5/2013 12:02:07 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
What companies are updating mid range phones 2 years later? Any? WP7 ?
You don't know squat about Windows Phone.

If you have something like an HTC that the manufacturer isn't providing updates fast enough for you then use something like SevenEighter to update to the latest developer build.

SevenEighter: Want Windows Phone 7.8 now? Try this easy tool (Update: Now supports 8862!)
http://www.windowsphonehacker.com/articles/want_wi...

It was originally developed so people didn't have to wait for their carrier to provide 7.8 but its also used to upgrade to the latest patch level.

I used it to update my HTC Arrive to the latest build.

Many other Windows 7 phones are still updated using zune software.

That's the benefit of not having such a fragmented OS/hardware.


By retrospooty on 7/5/2013 12:11:28 PM , Rating: 2
"If you have something like an HTC that the manufacturer isn't providing updates fast enough for you then use something like SevenEighter to update to the latest developer build."

If you want to talk unofficial updates that you do yourself, then you have to include Cyanogenmod/Android custom ROM's.

If you are talking official updates from the manufacturer, tell me what models of mid range phone from ANY maker or ANY OS are getting updates 2 years after release?


By Mitch101 on 7/5/2013 12:28:56 PM , Rating: 2
Windows Phone 7 is right around 2.5 years ago that's going to be a limited request but they can be updated using seven eighter easily.

Load SevenEighter - Plug phone into USB port -- hit update -depending on how many updates your behind may take a few mins and reboots but eventually its done.

Unfortunately I don't have any 2 year old windows Phone any longer but using Seven Eighter Ive been able to update all Windows Phone 7 devices with the click of a button to the latest Windows 7.8 build which the last update was about 3 months ago. That's even original Windows Phone 7 devices more than 2 years ago.

Cyanogenmod does not provide rom for every Android device. Not every android device is capable of being updated and the worse part is a lot of places still sell Android 2.x devices.

You don't see Apple and Microsoft still selling devices with an OS that isn't being updated. But there are plenty of Android devices being sold with obsolete OS's pre-installed with no upgrade path.


By retrospooty on 7/5/2013 12:40:07 PM , Rating: 2
Your argument is completely irrelevant.

If someone wants to go to "WindowsphoneHACKER.com" and update it themselves, then it isn't an official upgrade from the manufacturer. There ARE custom ROM's for most mid range Android devices, the HTC One S included, but this isnt about 3rd party hacks or do it yourselfers. This is about official updates from the manufacturer.

Again, still waiting on any who is complaining about official OS updates on mid range phones to show an example of any mid range phones from any maker on any OS getting OS updates for 2 years.


By Mitch101 on 7/5/2013 12:58:36 PM , Rating: 2
And Cyanogen is?
quote:
here ARE custom ROM's for most mid range Android devices
Most is better than All?

The patches come from the Microsoft Development site and Ive had enough Android devices abandoned 3 months after purchase. But that's to be expected when you buy a device that uses an OS from a advertising company.

I also find it ironic that the largest botnet might be coming from something called Android.


By retrospooty on 7/5/2013 1:01:22 PM , Rating: 2
Again, still waiting on any who is complaining about official OS updates on mid range phones to show an example of any mid range phones from any maker on any OS getting OS updates for 2 years.


By BRB29 on 7/5/2013 2:11:56 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
phones to show an example of any mid range phones from any maker on any OS getting OS updates for 2 years.


What do you consider mid range? ipad2, iphone4 have been mid range for a while. My Galaxy Nexus is still getting updates. I believe the droid 2 also had updates for 2 years.

Smartphones started out as high end. Most of them were made to be high end and then fall into mid range after 3-4 months. It's only recently that there's a lot of phones launched to be mid range.

There are phones that receives updates for 2 years after release. The problem is people don't buy it at release, they buy when the price cuts are in and it's $50 with the upgrade discount. The perception can be skewed.

But you're right as far as what most people experienced. Unless you buy on day one, you will not get updates for 2 years. The only exception is apple devices but it's obvious because it's locked down.


By retrospooty on 7/5/2013 2:18:16 PM , Rating: 2
"What do you consider mid range? ipad2, iphone4 have been mid range for a while"

High end phones are generally over $600. Flagship models, or $199 on 2 yr contract in the US. And the ipad2, iphone4 were released high end and now they are just older still for sale. Come on, dont be a hard head. We all know what high end, mid range and low end is.

I am not aware of Droid 2 updates... I had a Droid 3. A) I would consider it high end in its day (Droid 2 as well) and B) It didnt get updates for 2 years. Still no JB and never will.


By A11 on 7/5/2013 2:36:21 PM , Rating: 2
Technically he has a point. iPhone 4's and iPad 2's being sold now are midrange and going by apples track record they will still get updates 2 years from now.

But I do agree with you in general. Other than apple no one I'm aware of supports their cheaper phones for 2 years and if I recall correctly then even som more expensive phones had been dumped earlier than that.


By retrospooty on 7/5/2013 3:18:41 PM , Rating: 1
Moving last years high end to this years mid range isnt a mid range product. It's still last years high end product.


By Camikazi on 7/7/2013 4:31:58 PM , Rating: 2
He is talking about phones directly slated to be mid range phones not top end phones that are a year old. No iPhone or Galaxy S or HTC One (X, XL, X+) is mid range. Mid range phones are phones like the HTC One S, Galaxy Ace or S4 Mini.


By siberus on 7/5/2013 4:26:46 PM , Rating: 2
Yep I bought the Canadian droid 3 and then 3 months later droid 4 comes out and Motorola abandons droid 3 owners. To make matters worse the Canadian droid 3 (xt860) is slightly different so none of the recent (kexec) community created builds work correctly on it. So yeah even Google owning moto now cant get me to buy another lemon off them. If my next phone ends up being an android I'm definitely making sure my phones identical to the American version to atleast benefit from the larger community of devs.


I <3 Nexus
By MadMan007 on 7/4/2013 7:25:28 PM , Rating: 4
So, I can at least get why they don't update all phones to every new Android version, even though I think it's pretty bad it takes resources. But to not have security updates is *really* bad. I don't know, maybe security updates are truly only available with new OS versions? I would hope not.

p.s. Nexus 4 life.




RE: I <3 Nexus
By Mitch101 on 7/4/2013 7:46:50 PM , Rating: 2
Very sad eco system it has a lot going for it but updates for a device are abandoned about as fast as a new device is listed.

Its a hackers/exploiters heaven because all you have to do is write an exploit and wait for that OS version to no longer get updates and a lot of places still sell Android 2.3 on them with no possible upgrades.

Android flaw leaves 99% of devices open to attacks, details to be revealed at BlackHat
http://www.techspot.com/news/53133-android-flaw-le...
Mobile security company Bluebox claims to have discovered a flaw in Android that could leave any device released in the last four years vulnerable to attacks. The method demonstrated allowed modifying an app’s code without affecting its cryptographic signature, inserting malicious code completely unnoticed, leading to anything from data theft to creating botnets. The implications are huge, the researchers say.

So how many Millions of Android devices in the last 4 years that have ZERO hope of getting patched are about to become exploited?


RE: I <3 Nexus
By sprockkets on 7/5/2013 1:42:01 AM , Rating: 3
This issue could be solved via an update to the google play store and framework.

A lot of Android now is separate from the actual ROM.


This is why I got an iPhone
By KiwiTT on 7/8/2013 3:58:06 AM , Rating: 2
When I was considering getting an smartphone I really put off by the slow to non-existent updates of fixes. I did a spreadsheet a while back to verify what I found.

http://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0Agi4Ss...

Haven't updated it in a while, but this story seems to confirm the trend I observed then is still continuing.




RE: This is why I got an iPhone
By retrospooty on 7/8/2013 8:01:39 AM , Rating: 2
It's not as complex as all that... It's really quite simple. If you want "official" manufacturer updates (without updaing it yourself with a custom ROM) dont buy mid range or low end phones. If you buy a flagship phone from anyone, you generally get updates. If getting OS updates years later are important to you, buy an iPhone... But, then your stuck with an iPhone ;)


RE: This is why I got an iPhone
By KiwiTT on 7/10/2013 6:47:42 AM , Rating: 2
That was the argument others said to me as well. I intend having my phone for 3-5 years. A smartphone costs NZ$1,000 outright in NZ, so it is not something I want to change every year or so. My plan costs me NZ$39 per month and I would have to increase that to $59 per month to get a mere $200 off the price. As for flagship phones it took Samsung 5 months to make 4.1.2 available for the Galaxy S2 and no word on whether it will ever support 4.2.x. That is a long time to be vulnerable to exploits.


The amount of whining
By EasyC on 7/5/2013 12:21:34 PM , Rating: 2
On here is ridiculous. OMG I'll NEVER buy an HTC phone again because they won't officially update to 4.2!

I'm willing to bet 90% of the people whining about updates either don't know what the difference is between 4.1 and 4.2... or would never use the added features of 4.2.

I would gladly support a company that actually innovates the user experience on Android, rather than go with the incrementalist "Apple" of Android (here's looking at you, Samsung).

Besides, the One S is a 1 generation old mid range device that has already gotten 2 updates. Apple, by comparison drops support for devices after a couple of updates as well. Do all the iSheep whine this much?




RE: The amount of whining
By spread on 7/5/2013 11:50:13 PM , Rating: 2
There is no excuse for not updating a one year old device which was fairly expensive to begin with for a "mid" range phone.

I will never buy another HTC phone again. I don't trust HTC and for good reason. HTC doesn't care about it's customers and frankly I'm tired of HTC.

At least Apple keeps the idevices updated within reason. Some of the older ones lag with the newer software and that's understandable which is why they dropped support. Single core devices with 256mb ram are kind of slow now.


great...
By dgingerich on 7/4/2013 8:43:09 PM , Rating: 3
I was hesitant to buy an HTC because I had heard of reliability issues. The "One" line was different, they said. Yeah, well, it may be reliable, but lacking updates makes me almost as annoyed, especially after the debacle with my Captivate. I think I'll move to a Windows phone next.




CM
By Spuke on 7/4/2013 7:33:07 PM , Rating: 2
spelling
By UltraWide on 7/4/2013 8:14:44 PM , Rating: 2
It's purgatory not pergatory.




WHAAAT?
By bug77 on 7/5/2013 6:40:34 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
What is clear is that the only HTC handset to have the promise of life-long updates (until the hardware can no longer support it) is the HTC One Google Play edition, which ships direct from Google Inc. (GOOG) unlocked.


HTS is handling updates for that one, too, what would you think they'll support it for more than a year? And for HTC, one year of support means roughly one update.




By zero2dash on 7/5/2013 9:18:36 AM , Rating: 2
They quit releasing updates for them.

First smartphone I bought was an Aria, then I bought an Inspire. Both had to be rooted and flashed with custom/leaked roms to be more 'up to date'. Of course HTC all along has blamed AT&T for not allowing them to release updates.

All my phones since have been Samsung, and several updates have come out for all of them. On AT&T.




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