Mar 14 AT 9:56 AM Nick Gray 42 Comments

HTC Android 4.0 update with Sense 3.6 delivers noticeable performance improvements


With all the new phones expected to go on sale this spring, you may be tempted to ditch your old phone for something a little more cutting edge. But if you own an HTC phone that’s expected to receive an update to Android 4.0 (check out our official HTC Android 4.0 update list), you should be pleased to hear that the new update with HTC Sense 3.6 could deliver improved performance.

Yesterday we posted a video that showed off the Android 4.0 update for the HTC Velocity,¬†which mentioned that HTC Sense 3.6 was a lot smoother than previous iterations. Now Engadget has posted some benchmark scores showing a significant improvement in the HTC Sensation XE’s 3D graphics performance after it was updated to Android 4.0. As we’ve mentioned countless times, benchmark scores should always be taken with a grain of salt, but these latest numbers do confirm what we’ve been hearing from those who have received the Android 4.0 update from HTC.

Sense 3.0 Sense 3.6
Quadrant (v2) 2,097 2,213
Linpack (single-thread) 54.05 45.91
Linpack (multi-thread) 75.4 56.79
Nenamark1 (fps) 46.4 60.7
Nenamark2 (fps) 24.9 41.2
Neocore 61.1 61.1
SunSpider 9.1 (ms, lower numbers are better) 3,366 2,020
Vellamo 1,043 1,562
GLBenchmark – Egypt 24fps 46fps

There’s no guarantee that the Android 4.0 update for all HTC’s phones will produce the same results, but we’ll be keeping a close eye on your feedback once more updates start rolling out.

Source: Engadget

Nick is a tech enthusiast who has a soft spot for HTC and its devices. Nick joined the Android and Me family in the summer of 2010.

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  • spazby

    HTC is on a roll, I should change my favorite manufacturer in the settings….

    • Jeff Pan

      HTC ! Cheers!

  • thechad

    so EXCITED! I wait impatiently every day for the update!

  • Tangent

    All these reviews have got me obsessively checking for updates for my Sensation lol. And just for fun I think HTC just trolled me. I checked for a system update and it popped up with one! Turns out they just updated the HTC Watch app…

    • RealDealNeil

      I saw the same update this morning! It was so anticlimactic.

    • xxtilaroxx

      Omg me too! Smh… IDGA crap about watch lol I just want my ice cream sandwich update!

  • Rod

    My HTC Rezound get a quadrant score of 2512. Can’t wait to see if it gets any faster.

  • tmihai20

    I already changed my favorite manufacturer to HTC. I would really really not like Sense 3.6 when we could get Sense 4.0. It’s easy to tell that higher FPS are caused by the proper usage of GPU with ICS (it may also impact on interface performance and smoothness). I guess I can stay with a Sense 3.6 ROM if it has ICS under the hood.

  • Galen20K

    you ain’t Kidding!

  • dVyper

    Go HTC

  • redraider133

    I am glad HTC went with a less heavy sense for this version i think it is really going to help them in the long run and get their phones to really perform much better now that they lightened sense up. Can’t wait to see what else htc has in store.

  • yankeesusa

    I am patiently waiting for my evo3d to be updated. I can’t wait. HTC has been doing some great things and now with the announcement of them making less quantity with more quality makes it even better. If 4.0 on the evo 3d makes it alot better I’ll be waiting even longer to upgrade.

  • Taylor Wimberly

    I think Linpack is a pretty unreliable benchmark for Android devices.

    • metafor

      The Linpack in the market (from Green Computing) is. I would suggest moving to CF-bench as it provides both native and Java performance for a multitude of things.

    • Fulaman

      I agree, I was just about to say that myself. I mean the Nexus One has a higher linpack than many dual-core phones (which doesn’t make sense on the gen 1 snapdragon processor). Its linpack benchmark scores out class the galaxy s, nexus s, and other 2nd gen snapdragons (which doesn’t make sense). So yah, you are right Taylor.

  • Brandon V. Fletcher

    Anyone know the difference between Sense 3.6 and Sense 4?

    • jspiby2

      From what I’ve read all 3.6 is missing from 4.0 is related to hardware in the new HTC one series that the older phones don’t have.

      • Matthew Reynolds

        The new way of adding widgets is missing in 3.6 also and a bunch of other ui stuff

        • tmihai20

          It looks like Sense 4.0 has more similarities to standard ICS launcher than any other custom UIs. I don’t buy the hardware differences between the One series and the older phones. They said they will simplify Sense, starting with Sense 4.0. I find it really hard to believe better hardware would be needed.

          • jspiby2

            If they have taken more stuff out that’s shit sorry to swear, they should have just stuck with 4.0 or even give us a stock android :-)

    • Nick Gray

      Sense 4.0 was designed with Android 4.0 in mind, making the skin a lot lighter. Sense 3.6 is intended to enable Android 4.0 features without removing Sense functionality that consumers have grown accustomed to.

  • jspiby2

    Samsung are stealing the show yet again, they didn’t make a massive announcement like Htc about the update and they have only just started to roll out there update BUT have already took over HTC and updated more galaxy s 2s, it pains me to say it but come on HTC get it together, its one thing making a big list of phones that will eventually get it but as usual they are dragging there heals :-(

    • CORYK333

      U must be the life of the party!!!!

      • jspiby2

        Yeh mate how did you guess that?

    • Nick Gray

      Not sure why you think HTC is dragging its heels. They announced that certain phone will be getting Android 4.0 in March. So far, HTC is ahead of the schedule they laid out.

      • jspiby2

        Samsung only just announced it the other day (HTC anounced a while back saying by the end of March) and already and I hear its been released in a few more European countrys and as the s 2 is the best selling android phone I would guess more people have got there update. HTC have only said that sensation and sensation xe are getting it by the end of March the phone hardware is practically identical let’s be honest how hard can it be to get this update out.

        • Nick Gray

          Since Google still has not push out out the ICS update to all Nexus S devices and they completely abandoned the Nexus One, it’s probably a lot harder than we think.

    • tmihai20

      I beg to differ, Sir. It doesn’t take much to release ICS on a phone with similar specs as the original Galaxy S 2. HTC must not hurry the update so that it comes out well. Samsung has only one flagship phone and several iterations, HTC has several quite different flagship phones.

      • jspiby2

        But they have only announced the update by the end of March for sensation and sensation xe two phones with hardware almost identical

        • tmihai20

          Have I said anything different? I see you want to stick to your bad opinion about HTC. HTC has consistently improved their game. You can’t force your opinion on other, free speech is a right we are still fighting for. I understand your opinion, I respect it, so I urge you to respect our opinions as well. No more down-voting our comments, ok?

  • Matthew Reynolds

    The sprint evo 3d already got the kernel update that boosted the gpu in January. So we wont see much difference with that in ics. But i still can’t wait :D

  • David Sumner

    been checking for an update almost every day this month lol
    i got one today but it wasnt the one i wanted =/ just a update to the HTC Watch app =/
    still waiting

  • bellken

    I can’t wait for ICS for my rezound.

  • AnthonyRyan

    same here I was in the car and I saw a update on my notification bar and I was like yes! ICS for my sensation 4G then I checked the details and it was just HTC Watch update and I was like awe man I just got my hopes up … Lol

  • miah2008

    I think most of the improved performance comes from newer adreno drivers, the existing ones were below par.

  • Nathan D.

    So over all the performance is better in most bench marks score so it could mean that day to day performance is better but then again i could be wrong.

  • Dane

    Yeah!!! Tell me about it when I got the htc watch update I thought it was the Ics 4.0 update talk about depressing. Lol

  • edsel

    Android 4.0 with HTC sense 3.6 now available here in Saudi Arabia

  • Ali Amjad

    Loving Android 4.0 with HTC Sense 3.6 on my HTC Sensation. Phone’s performance has improved in many aspects. I have also noted an improved battery performance. Different apps are behaving differently. Many have improved but I have noticed that Where’s my Water is now taking too much time to load. Overall, its awesome and now I am not going to ditch it :)

  • jono

    When will they bring out sense 4.0 on sensation xe in ireland

  • John

    hTC Amaze is smoother and less memory hungry with 3.6 sense & Ics 4.0.3 only complaint is the nexus live wallpaper was changed.

  • Sylvia

    I updated my phone because my IT person recommended I accept updates to keep my phone current. I have an IT person because I am not that technology savvy. I haven’t read much about updates in the past, in part because I didn’t understand them when I tried, but primarily because I mistakenly thought updates were to improve performance, fix prior problems, etc. The term “update” in itself suggests something BETTER. I did NOT expect to have features taken away, such as loss of hotspot usage, which is something I really needed. For those of you who feel superior because you knew better, researched the update in advance, and feel everyone else deserves what they got, congratulations. Pat yourselves on the back for being so smart. I still think it is unconscionable for a company to cause such a costly outcome, cause loss of such an important feature, knowing there will be many people who will simply select update on their phones because they believe it will be safe to do so. It’s a breach of consumer trust to provide an “update” only to penalize the consumer afterwards and then point the blame back at the consumer. People are watching every penny these days because they have to. I have obviously learned a painful lesson, but whoever was involved in the decision to make people pay an additional monthly fee to continue using what had previously been provided – SHAME ON YOU.