Sprint's HTC One owners get Android 4.3, rival U.S. operators to follow this month
Sprint's HTC One will be the first to get Android 4.3.
Android 4.3, a.k.a. Jelly Bean, includes new profiles allowing users to tweak layouts and available applications based on who is using the device, alongside integration with Bluetooth Smart, which allows users to pair devices like heart rate monitors to their Android hardware. Android 4.3 also touts support for OpenGL ES 3.0, which Google said will allow game developers to create photo-realistic 3D games and applications, as well as new digital rights management APIs affording developers additional options to protect their content.
HTC customizations integrated into the over-the-air Android 4.3 update include new Sense user interface features like Instagram support within the BlinkFeed personalized homescreen, as well as new video highlight templates.
HTC announced the Sprint update Wednesday via Twitter, adding that it plans to expand Android 4.3 support to One owners on AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T) and T-Mobile US (NYSE:TMUS) by mid-October, with Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) following by month's end.
HTC first confirmed plans to upgrade the One to Android 4.3 in a Twitter post published in mid-August. At that time HTC's president of global sales, Jason Mackenzie, said the manufacturer was "working hard" to upgrade all U.S. and Canadian versions of the One by the end of September. Canadian carrier Rogers began rolling out Android 4.3 to HTC One owners on Sept. 30.
HTC rival Samsung Electronics is also poised to overhaul its flagship Galaxy S4 smartphone as well as its Galaxy S III and Galaxy Note II phablet to Android 4.3, according a software upgrade roadmap published by French operator SFR. The Galaxy S4 is first in line for Android 4.3, with the SFR roadmap indicating Samsung will issue the update later this month. The Galaxy S III and Galaxy Note II will follow sometime in late November or early December, the SFR timetable notes. All updates will be delivered as over-the-air releases and via the Samsung Kies content sync and software application.
Android powered a record 79.5 percent of all smartphones shipped worldwide during the second quarter of 2013, up from 69.5 percent in the year-ago quarter, Strategy Analytics reports. The research firm credited growth to strong demand for Android models across all price points in both developed and emerging markets, led by the U.S., China and Brazil.
- read this Android Central article
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