Since the announcement of the HTC One with Nexus User Experience on HTC’s blog this morning, Android lovers worldwide have been falling over themselves to get more information on which special HTC features this “Special Edition” model will retain. Android Police were able to get some clarifications from HTC directly on just how vanilla the phone could be.
It will still have HTC’s UltraPixel camera, but it will run with the stock Android camera app. It will produce “comparable quality” photos to the HTC One, but it will lack the Zoe function, video highlights and dedicated night mode. As a trade off, it will get stock Android 4.2’s Photo Sphere instead.
The IR blaster will be disabled as stock Android does not support it. Ultimately, this means the hardcore purists who get this phone WON’T be able to put the football back on TV when wifey has hidden all the remotes. However, there is a glimmer of hope that future versions of the OS will enable this function.
The FM radio antenna seems unlikely to be functional either as the radio app is a HTC-specific add-on. Personally, this has always been a big selling point over the iPhone for me, as I listen to the radio on my daily commute. A major loss of points on my tally board.
Beats Audio will be on the device, but it will ALWAYS be on. It will lack the indicator on the notification bar (which the HTC One has currently, but no longer gives an option in the notification drawer to toggle on/off) Not a huge deal, unless you’re really trying to squeeze as much juice out of this puppy as possible. Given that the battery life on my HTC One has done rather well, I wouldn’t be concerned.
The handset goes on sale in the US only through the Play Store on June 26th. As Buzz mentioned earlier today, any imported versions will lack LTE support so we have our hopes pinned on an international version being released.
While all this discussion of the HTC One Nexus User Experience is exciting, what about people who bought the HTC One early who might like some stock Android love? Well, it seems HTC has thought about that, too.
HTC is currently “examining the best way to support early adopters of the One,” who would potentially prefer an AOSP experience to Sense UI. Yep, early adopters might just have the option to change their phone’s operating system from Android+Sense to stock AOSP Android, thanks to HTC.
Just how and when HTC might roll this out is unknown, but it’s certainly a positive sign that this confirmation has come. All too often, early adopters get left behind when newer things are announced, but at least here, it doesn’t look like that’ll happen. I’d imagine HTC will make some sort of downloadable flash tool available (much like the RUU updates it distributes) which will allow existing HTC One owners to flash across to AOSP. Very cool.