Jul 17 AT 5:30 PM Nick Gray 17 Comments

Lack of support from Qualcomm forced HTC to pull One S Android 4.2 update


After the HTC one was unveiled in February, HTC announced that the HTC One S, One X and Butterfly would all receive the same update as HTC’s flagship device. Right as HTC started rolling out Android 4.2 for the international variants of the HTC One, the company announced that the HTC One S would “remain on the current version of Android and HTC Sense.” HTC did not elaborate on the reason for the reversal, but trusted a source familiar with the matter has revealed details which confirm what many have been speculating.

The Android 4.2 update for the HTC One S was dropped because there are two distinct versions of the phone – the HTC One S (powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4) and the HTC One S C2 (powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon S3).  The HTC One S was released in Europe, Middle East and the Americas while the slightly cheaper HTC One S C2 made its way to Asia and select markets in eastern Europe. Fortunately, our source claims that the Android 4.2 update for both variants of the HTC One S was not dropped simply because the two phones were powered by two different processors. HTC chose to drop the update for both devised because “Qualcomm has stopped critical software support for the S3, leaving the obligation to update those gnarly pieces of chipset software on OEMs.” To deliver the update on the S3 powered HTC One S C2,  HTC software engineers would be forced to take on an extremely difficult and expensive task of updating the S3 drivers to work with the new version of Android, something which typically falls on Qualcomm’s shoulders.

Rather than create confusion for consumers and release the update for the S4 powered HTC One S, HTC chose to cancel the update for both the S3 and S4 variants.

Fortunately, there’s some new information regarding the Android 4.2 update for the HTC One S which coincides perfectly with what our source shared. According to @LlabTooFeR, the Snapdragon S4 powered HTC One S will receive the update. The status of the S3 powered HTC One S C2 is not given. We have no way of knowing if @LlabTooFeR’s claims are correct, but if HTC does choose to cave to the will of the people, we are confident that Snapdragon S4 variant of the HTC One S will be the only one to receive the Android 4.2 update.

Nick is a tech enthusiast who has a soft spot for HTC and its devices. He started HTCsource.com (the first HTC blog) back in 2007 and later joined the Android and Me family in the summer of 2010.

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