February 23, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
Just yesterday, we talked about how Android 4.4.2 had begun rolling out to the T-Mobile HTC One. We also mentioned that a similar update was on its way for the AT&T HTC One in the very near future. Well, that time is now here, as the 4.4.2 update has begun rolling out for AT&T’s variant of the device.
The update, which comes in at software version 4.18.502.7, started rolling out early this morning. As expected, it packs Android 4.4.2 laced with Sense 5.5. Naturally, this is a staged rollout, meaning that not every device will receive the update immediately. However, thanks to XDA Senior Members clsA and smoley, we have a pair of mirrors on AndroidFileHost and Dropbox, which can be flashed through the stock recovery.
Head over to the Android 4.4.2 update thread to get in on the discussion. And if you’re looking to get in on the update a bit early, head over to clsA’s AndroidFileHost mirror and smoley’s Dropbox mirror.
February 22, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
HTC has done a reasonably good job in disseminating the KitKat goods to their flagship HTC One, as well as its regional variants. The most recent recipient of the 4.4 update is the T-Mobile variant, which started receiving the staged rollout late last night.
The KitKat update for the T-Mobile HTC One comes in at software version 4.19.531.10, and it bumps up the Android version to 4.4.2 with HTC Sense 5.5. As expected, the update packs all the same features that we saw in the Verizon update not too long ago.
The update is being delivered in the form of a staged rollout. Naturally, this means that not every device will receive the OTA immediately. However, the update was captured and mirrored by XDA Recognized Developer mwang for everyone’s early side-loading pleasure. So if you wish to get in on the update a bit early or create a ROM derived from the official OTA, head over to mwang’s mirrored OTA update thread.
And in other HTC One KitKat news, the update for the AT&T HTC One is coming soon as well. As announced on Twitter by HTC’s executive director of product management, KitKat for the AT&T HTC One has received carrier approval and is scheduled for OTA delivery shortly, and we’ll be sure to share the update once it’s been captured.
Good job with the timely updates, HTC. These are good times to be an HTC One owner. Leave us your thoughts in the comments below!
February 14, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
There are many more power users running Android than other, more brand-loyal “Sheeple” platforms. Because of this, it should come as no surprise that the Android community is quite familiar with the awesomeness that is Reddit. A while ago, we talked a bit about a Reddit AMA session held by the awesome folks behind the popular Paranoid Android ROM. Now, there’s another Reddit AMA that may be of interest to you, and it’s with the HTC Product Team.
During the AMA session, various Redditors asked a wide variety of questions including update timing and availability, the foundations of Sense UI’s framework, and even the design inspiration behind various products like the HTC One and One X and why “the need/want for removable battery is continually decreasing.” And through HTC’s responses, we learned that HTC plans on righting its wrongs with the HTC One X by supporting the current devices for two years of updates and possibly updating at least certain variants of the One X, and why certain design and product decisions were made. Unfortunately despite being asked explicitely, there is no official word regarding an HTC-made Nexus device.
To check out the whole AMA, you should make your way over to Reddit and read the whole Q&A thread. It’s definitely worth your time if you’re an HTC fan.
February 14, 2014 By: Jimmy McGee
Android KitKat 4.4.2 is now available for the unlocked and developer edition HTC Ones! That and much more news is covered by Jordan, as he reviews all the important stories from this week. Included in this week’s news is the announcement that CyanogenMod 11 Milestone 3 is available for 50 devices and their is now a way to turn your Moto G into a Play Edition! That’s not all that’s covered in today’s video!
Jordan talks about the other videos released this week on XDA Developer TV. XDA Developer TV Producer TK released an Xposed Tuesday video for Complete Action Plus, Jordan taught us about ART the Android Runtime compiler, and TK gave us an Android App Review of Quickr. Pull up a chair and check out this video.
February 11, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
In its relatively short lifespan, the highly regarded HTC One has proven to be no stranger to expedient software updates. The device, which initially launched with Android version 4.1, saw a rather expedient update to KitKat on its developer and unlocked editions just one month after the release of Google’s latest OS.
Naturally, carrier-branded updates are taking a bit longer, but HTC has already owned up to and apologized for this. To that end, we’ve already seen the update start rolling out to carrier-branded devices on Sprint and Verizon. But since 4.4.2 has already been live for European devices, it was only a matter of time before the developer and unlocked models also gained a taste of the latest version of KitKat with a helping of Sense 5.5.
Now, Android 4.4 with Sense 5.5 has begun rolling out to the developer and unlocked editions of the HTC One. The update comes in the form of a 312.22 MB update, bringing you to software version 4.19.1540.4. And apparently, all developer and unlocked devices that are running stock firmware are now receiving the update when manually checking for updates.
Share your experiences with the latest Sense-laden KitKat update for the HTC One in the comments below, and don’t forget to head over to the update discussion thread to get in on the discussion. Good job on the timely updates on your latest flagships, HTC—now update the One X!
February 6, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
In late November of last year, we were all quite surprised to see that certain variants the HTC One became the first heavily-skinned devices to receive the KitKat lovin’. Sure, the formerly Googorola Moto X already had the privilege of enjoying the KitKat goods for some time. But let’s face it, the Moto X’s skin is essentially as close to stock Android as you can get without being on stock Android.
Unfortunately, the early KitKat availability for the HTC One applied only to the developer / unlocked phones and to its GPe variant, rather than any carrier-branded devices. Now, Verizon HTC One owners can sing a little victory song, as their devices can now enjoy the official KitKat lovin’. This comes just under a week after the same could be said for the Sprint variant.
The official word comes directly from HTC’s Executive Director of Product Management Mohammed Versi:
HTC One Verizon Owners! We have received technical approval for the OS 4.4 + Sense 5.5 update today. Expect the OTA out shortly. Thanks!
We’re glad to see a relatively expedient KitKat update make it out to a carrier-branded device because as we all know, carriers are “evil” entities that delay updates and add bloatware. Share your thoughts in the comments below, and don’t forget to make your way over to the Verizon HTC One forums.
January 31, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
Ever since Android 4.4 KitKat was released on Halloween of last year, the race has been on for device manufacturers and carriers to deliver the update goods as expediently as possible. OK, fine—that last part (“carriers”) is a bit of a lie. But thankfully, they’re not completely resting on their laurels.
Just two days ago, we talked about HTC’s very public apology letter owning up to missing their self-imposed update schedule on the US carrier-branded variants of the critically acclaimed HTC One. In the public apology letter, John Mackenzie stated that updates would be expected to make their way to consumer devices within the next week or two. Now in a strange twist of fate, the official KitKat update is now available for the Sprint HTC One.
The update comes as software version 4.06.651.4. At present, it is only available for update via “customer initiated request.” In other words, it’s time to start mashing that “Check for Updates” button. Sprint’s support forums also state that the update will officially begin batched rollout on February 11th.
If you’re the lucky owner of a Sprint HTC One, make your way over to your device’s home forum and the 4.4.2 discussion thread to learn more. We’re glad to see that the update appeared on at least one US carrier variant by the end of their 90-day window, especially given the complexity of the update process mandated by carrier approval and the like. Good job, HTC. Now while you’re at it, give us support for the One X and One X+.
January 29, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
When Android 4.4 KitKat was released in the home stretch of last year, many OEMs came forward to announce their update plans for their current flagship devices. HTC was one of these manufacturers, and they were bold enough to announce that all US carrier variants of their flagship HTC One would receive the KitKat goods in 90 days or less.
For the most part, HTC has been quite good about getting updates out to various versions of the One. For starters, the Google Play edition was broken off a piece of that KitKat bar just about two weeks after the OS was announced. Then not too long after, we saw Android 4.4 make an appearance on the Developer and Unlocked variants of the One.
Now, we are approaching the self-imposed 90 day deadline that HTC originally strove to achieve, but it seems as if we won’t be seeing KitKat hit US carrier devices in the next few days. Now before you get ready to pick up those pitchforks and take your digital stampede over to Twitter and other forms of social media, it’s important to realize that not all of this is directly under HTC’s control. In fact, in an effort to boost transparency regarding firmware updates, HTC went so far as to explain why carrier-branded devices lag behind their GPe counterparts.
Now, HTC America’s President John Mackenzie has issued a statement apologizing for the fact that the company will unfortunately fail to meet their rather aggressive deadline. However, there is good news in all of this. First off, it’s commendable that the company is admitting and taking ownership for this issue, as it shows that the ailing company genuinely cares for its consumers. Second, if you take a look at HTC’s software update page, the status for these branded devices states that they are currently undergoing carrier certification. Thus if we take HTC at face value, they have already sent updates to all major US carriers and the delay is now due to the carriers rather than HTC. And finally, Mackenzie states that the update will go live in a couple of weeks.
We should applaud HTC for coming forth and taking ownership of this small setback. After all, it’s better that they’re actively are working on pushing out these updates and keeping their promises, as well as holding themselves accountable for when they fail to meet their self-imposed deadlines. What are your thoughts on the delay and HTC’s apology letter? Let us know in the comments below!
January 28, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
Around the time that Android 4.4 KitKat was released near the tail end of last year, many manufacturers made claims regarding planned update timing for their flagship models. HTC made no exception with its highly acclaimed flagship HTC One, when the company promised to deliver updates to consumer devices within 90 days. Accordingly, we saw the update roll out to the developer and unlocked devices, as well as to the Google Play edition some time ago. Now, the update has also begun making its way to various HTC One devices in Europe.
Today’s OTA is software version 4.19.401.8, and it comes in at a rather trim 308.24 MB. In addition to bumping up the Android version to 4.4.2, it also brings security enhancements, cloud printing support, additional Bluetooth profiles, and the removal of Adobe Flash player support. The update itself has begun rolling out in various parts of Europe, but it has also been captured and mirrored for your sideloading and ROM creation pleasure, courtesy of XDA Recognized Contributor patensas.
Those looking to get in on the update a bit early should visit the firmware download thread. And once you’re done getting the update loaded onto your own device or creating a frankenROM from the aforementioned firmware package, head over to the OTA discussion thread to share your experiences with the rest of the community.
Finally, those of you with US carrier variants will be glad to know that your updates are coming up soon as well. These updates are currently undergoing carrier certification, with work also being done on bringing the update to the One Mini and One Max.
Are you a fan of HTC’s update strategy and expedience? Let us know in the comments below!
December 27, 2013 By: Will Verduzco
This generation, HTC has been quick to demonstrate that it is more than capable of delivering timely Android firmware updates for its flagship HTC One. In addition to providing an official KitKat update to the Google Play edition of the device, the Taiwanese OEM has updated its unlocked and developer edition devices to KitKat as well. Despite this, carrier-branded variants of the One are still stuck in Jelly Bean land, with some variants only receiving their 4.3 update as recently as two weeks ago.
If HTC already released Android 4.4 for its unlocked devices, why then is your carrier-branded unit still running an earlier firmware build? Well, HTC decided to shed some light on the process, detailing what exactly goes into the process of delivering Android firmware updates—from when Google’s Platform Developer Kit (PDK) is released and when the OEMs and component manufacturers receive the source code, all the way to when the OTA update rolls out. And whether or not you find comfort in knowing the steps that go into delivering updates, it’s interesting to see the process visualized in infographic form.
Head over to the source link or click on the thumbnail below to check out the entire process. Then, feel free to complain about carrier OTA delays in the comments section below.
December 25, 2013 By: Will Verduzco
Once again, all of us here at XDA would like to wish you a Happy Holiday Season! Undoubtedly, many of our happy readers are waking up to some extra Holiday cheer in the form of shiny new tech acquisitions. Luckily, XDA is here and has your back in helping you make the most of your new, Android-powered tech toy(s).
You may remember that a little while ago, we shared with you our Best of 2013 Holiday Gift Guide. Now, we’re going to take some of these “Best” devices that you all voted for, and help you make the most of them. Obviously, we’re going to start with gaining root access and installing a custom recovery. But on some devices, this will even include installing an aftermarket ROM or even enabling multiboot!
Let’s start the day with your top pick as best tablet of 2013, the Google Nexus 7 (2013). With its high end specs and budget-friendly price, we think it’s safe to assume that quite a few Android fans are waking up to a brand new N7.
Since the Nexus 7 is a Nexus device, unlocking and rooting is incredibly simple. You will want to start by installing ADB and Fastboot by downloading the Android SDK (or installing minimal Fastboot and ADB installer, and the associated drivers). Then after you have ADB and Fastboot installed, the real fun can begin!
If all you want is root access, the easiest way to accomplish this is by running CF-Auto-Root for the Nexus 7 (2013). CF-Auto-Root will get you rooted and install the latest version of SuperSU in practically no time and with virtually no effort or hassle.
Not everyone likes it simple, though. For those who’d rather get a bit more hands on, you can unlock your device by turning on USB debugging in developer settings and rebooting your tablet to bootloader by issuing the adb reboot-bootloader command. From there, you can unlock your new device by entering fastboot oem unlock. Then, simply reboot your device with fastboot reboot, reenter your bootloader with adb reboot-bootloader, and flash a custom recovery using fastboot flash recovery <recovery image filename.img>.
After you have your custom recovery installed, your doors are now open to installing some of the more popular custom ROMs, or perhaps you can even give Multiboot a try! All of this and more can be found in our Google Nexus 7 (2013) forum, here at XDA.
Now let’s shift our attention to your top pick as best smartphone of 2013. Surprise, surprise. It was the highly anticipated Google Nexus 5. Just like the Nexus 7, it also offers a wallet-friendly price. But unlike its tablet sibling, it also offers bleeding edge specs like a quad-core 2.26 GHz Snapdragon 800 processor.
Just like the Nexus 7, unlocking and rooting the Nexus 5 is a cakewalk. Just like what we covered above, you will want to start by installing ADB and Fastboot by downloading the Android SDK (or installing minimal Fastboot and ADB installer, and the associated drivers).
Once again, if all you want is root access, the easiest way to accomplish this is by running CF-Auto-Root for the Nexus 5. CF-Auto-Root will get you rooted and install the latest version of SuperSU in practically no time and with virtually no effort or hassle.
For those who’d rather get a bit more hands on, you can unlock your device by turning on USB debugging in developer settings and rebooting your tablet to bootloader by issuing the adb reboot-bootloader command. From there, you can unlock your new device by entering fastboot oem unlock. Then, simply reboot your device with fastboot reboot, reenter your bootloader with adb reboot-bootloader, and flash a custom recovery using fastboot flash recovery <recovery image filename.img>.
Once you’ve got your recovery installed, you can now begin flashing any number of custom ROMs and kernels. And for those willing to try something a bit more ambitious, you can even play around with multiboot. Obviously, all this and more can be found in our Google Nexus 5 forum.
Next up, we have the HTC One. Although the device is no longer on the bleeding edge in the specs department, it offers build quality and a design aesthetic simply unparalleled in the Android OEM world.
While the process is a bit more involved than it is on the Nexus devices listed above, it is fully possible to unlock, root, install a custom recovery, and do much more on the HTC One. Thanks to the hard work by ieftm and his team, the device can be unlocked. There are also several custom recovery options available, as well as Official OmniROM and CyanogenMod installations, though you will want to make sure you are installing the appropriate version for your particular variant.
In addition to the custom ROM fun, those who are feeling a bit more ambitious can give Multiboot a try, as well as a Google Play editions conversion. Just like the previous two devices, all this and more can be found in the HTC One forum.
Please note, however, that the above links are intended for the INTERNATIONAL version of the device. If you’ve got yourself a shiny new carrier-branded variant, make sure you find your appropriate XDA forum before getting to work.
Let’s turn our attention over to the popular and powerful Sony Xperia Z1. Unlocking the device is a breeze. From there, you will want to gain root access, as well as flash a custom recovery. Once you’ve gotten that done, Official OmniROM and CyanogenMod builds await. And like the devices above, all of this and more can be found in the Sony Xperia Z1 forum here at XDA.
Now, we will talk about the wallet-friendly Moto G. Although it’s not the fastest device available, it offers a fantastic value that is simply unmatched in other budget devices.
Luckily, it is quite easy to unlock the Moto G directly through Motorola. From there, you can easily achieve root access and install a custom recovery. There’s not much in the aftermarket development world beyond the above, but you can rest assured that this is only a matter of time, thanks to the device’s popularity. And of course, keep your eyes peeled on the Moto G forums to keep apprised of any and all development activity for the device.
This innovative Moto X proves that raw hardware specs aren’t everything and that an innovative feature set can make for a great user experience, even on non-bleeding edge hardware.
Let’s start with rooting and unlocking, which is now possible thanks to jcase’s RockMyMoto exploit. From there, you will want to install a custom recovery. Then, you can try out any one of the source-built custom ROMs and kernels available in the Moto X forum.
Now we have the largest phone on this list, the Samsung Galaxy Note 3. Packing bleeding edge specs, a mammoth sized screen, and the fantastic Wacom-based S Pen, the Note 3 is certainly a force to be reckoned with.
Luckily, rooting the device and installing a custom recovery are quite easy on the Note 3. Development support is also quite widespread on the Note 3, so be sure to check out the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 forum here at XDA. Please note, however, that the above links are intended for the INTERNATIONAL version of the device. If you’ve got yourself a shiny new carrier-branded variant, make sure you find your appropriate XDA forum before getting to work.
Rounding out this article, we have the Samsung Galaxy S 4. Much like the highly acclaimed HTC One, the SGS4 is no longer the king of all of the hardware specs battles. That said, it’s still a great phone, jam packed with plenty of great features.
Thanks to the device’s age and vast popularity, root access and custom recoveries are both possible, with much more available in the Samsung Galaxy S 4 forum. But just like the HTC One and Note 3, be sure to visit the appropriate forum for you carrier-branded variant if you’re not running the international version of the device.
We wish you much Android-powered joy for this Holiday Season! See you in the XDA forums!
December 17, 2013 By: Will Verduzco
Not too long ago, the international HTC One received its official update to Android 4.3. Alongside the Android version update, the OTA also brought Sense 5.5, which allowed users to finally disable BlinkFeed on the device. Then three days ago, we talked about how the Verizon HTC One was slated to receive an OTA update to Android 4.3 very soon. Now, the Android 4.3 (2.10.605.1) update is here, and as expected it does not come with Sense 5.5.
Despite not coming with Sense 5.5, the 2.10.605.1 firmware brings fixes a few key issues. It also unfortunately packs a new dose of bloatware, courtesy of the VZ Cloud App. As stated in Verizon’s support page:
KEY ISSUES HAVE BEEN RESOLVED
• Increased charging speed when using Mophie Juicepack power station
• Corrected faint ringing noise from earpiece
• Play purchased ringtones
• Connection error fixed in the HTC Watch application
• View the correct date using the all day calendar reminder
• Conjunction words are better recognized on device keyboard
• Backup Assistant performance
KEY OS ENHANCEMENTS
• VZ Cloud App is now preloaded
- Back up contacts, photos, text messages and call logs
- Transfer that content to your new phone or if other is lost/stolen
GALLERY>VIDEO HIGHLIGHT IMPROVEMENTS
• Add your own music tracks to Video Highlights video
- Simply tap Menu>Select Music to choose a song from your collection
You can learn more about the update over on HTC’s support page and by visiting XDA Senior Member ak074‘s update changelog thread. And for those of you tired of waiting, XDA Senior Member carm01 has gone ahead and mirrored the 469 MB update over in this thread, so hurry up and get to sideloading!
Are you a fan of the update even though it is lacking Sense 5.5? Are you peeved about the added bloat? Let us know in the comments below!
December 14, 2013 By: Will Verduzco
About a month and a half, we saw the international HTC One receive its OTA update to Android 4.3. The update packed Sense 5.5, and finally gave users the option to disable HTC’s trademark BlinkFeed home screen panel. Then earlier today, we saw a similar OTA roll out to the HTC One Mini in Europe. Now, it looks like the Verizon variant of the full size HTC One flagship will be receiving the Android 4.3 goods in the coming few days.
HTC’s executive director of product management publicly stated on his Twitter account yesterday that the OTA has received technical approval on Verizon, with the OTA being targeted for Tuesday. This is certainly good news for HTC One owners on America’s largest carrier.
Diverging from the previously seen updates, Android 4.3 on the Verizon variant of the HTC One will not come with Sense 5.5. Because of that omission, it is likely that this update will not bring the ability to disable BlinkFeed. That said, the company is planning on bringing Sense 5.5-laden KitKat to the device in January, so the delay shouldn’t be too long.
What are your thoughts on HTC’s update plans? Are you upset that this build won’t pack Sense 5.5, whereas other Android 4.3 builds for other One variants did? Are you looking forward to disabling BlinkFeed once you get your Sense 5.5 update? Let us know in the comments below!