Why You Need to Think Twice About Buying the HTC One

The HTC One is one of the most impressive smartphones in recent memory and it’s a device that will continue to lure consumers in for many months to come. However, HTC’s past is littered with reasons why those interested will want to think twice about buying the HTC One, or any HTC smartphone, for the foreseeable future.

All the way back in February of last year, HTC issued a simple tweet about an Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update for the Droid Incredible 2, a device that was a big name at the time and one that Verizon consumers still are in possession of. The tweet stated very simply that the software for the Droid Incredible 2 was planned and that it would have details soon.

Fast-forward to June. HTC at the time said that a release date for the Droid Incredible 2 Ice Cream Sandwich update was To Be Determined (TBD) but that it was planning to get it out by August. This August date was reflected in a chart that HTC had at the time that listed the update as rolling out by August.

Cue, August. The HTC ThunderBolt Android 4.0 update was delayed and the Droid Incredible 2 ICS update right along with it. At the time, HTC claimed that the delays were due to connectivity issues, an alibi that has been used in 2013 as well.

Earlier this year, after an absurd wait, even by Android standards, ThunderBolt owners were treated to an ICS update that for some, improved the device and for others, made it a bit of a nightmare.

And that brings us to the present day where the HTC ThunderBolt is rocking Android 4.0 but nine months later, the Droid Incredible 2 ICS update is still sitting in limbo with HTC and Verizon refusing to offer any concrete answers in regards to the update’s whereabouts.

Recently, the company claimed that there is “nothing new just yet, but we’ll definitely let you know as soon as we hear something.” It also thanked that owner for his patience, nine months after the update was supposed to roll out.

For many consumers, the Droid Incredible 2 was just a blip on the radar. For many others, it was a device that they invested hundreds and likely thousands of dollars into thanks to a monthly data plan. When spending that kind of money, there is an expectation that a company is going to take care of you and offer something that resembles customer service.

That hasn’t been the case with the Droid Incredible 2. And while it certainly isn’t a phone with the credentials of the HTC One, that doesn’t excuse HTC from blowing off its users. At this point, Droid Incredible 2 owners deserve a response in regards to the update, just like HTC Desire HD users did when HTC canceled their Ice Cream Sandwich update, many moons ago.

HTC still hasn't proven to be reliable when it comes to software and taking care of its phones.

HTC still hasn’t proven to be reliable when it comes to software and taking care of its phones.

And at this point, consumers need to ask themselves: “Can I trust a company that seems to completely forget about its older devices?” Particularly in a world where Apple and Samsung continually keep their users happy with timely updates for aging devices. Examples? The Samsung Galaxy S2, which came out in 2011 just like the Droid Incredible 2, recently got Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. Not ICS, Jelly Bean. The iPhone 3GS which came out in 2009, received parts of the iOS 6 update.

Software is and will be one of the features that separate phones from one another and at this point, given HTC’s performance here with the Droid Incredible 2, it’s hard to trust HTC like an Apple or a Samsung when it comes to software. (I should also point out the supposed issues with the promised HTC One S Sense 5 update.) It may redeem itself in the days ahead but right now is a time to be weary.

Just something to keep in mind before taking the plunge with the new HTC One or really, any HTC smartphone on the market.

  

Comments

  1. Richard Martin says

    Why wouldn’t a One purchaser just install a custom ROM?

    Same with the Incredible owners or anyone with a modern Android phone.

    • regbs says

      Not everyone is comfortable rooting and unlocking, RM. You’re missing avoiding the article’s point so you can tell anyone who will listen that you root and unlock. So do most of the readers of a tech article. End users shouldn’t have to root. Worse, a company shouldn’t make empty promises.

  2. Devin says

    That’s why i left them, the HTC one s was on the market before the Galaxy s3 at the time. And Samsung granted the jellybean update faster than HTC. The one s just got the update last month. Almost a entire year later. So now I’m pro samsung with my white galaxy note 2.

    • Suse says

      Hmm, my one s got its Jelly Bean update in December on Orange UK – carriers play a huge part in updatrs

  3. Steve says

    Are you even aware of how many Android phones Samsung and other OEMs have released that never saw any OS updates? At least HTC planned or tried with many phones. You’re also drawing an upgrade conclusion based on OS and not hardware. Phones are computers, after all. Would you be mad that your 3 year old laptop didn’t have enough expandable RAM to go from XP to Windows 8? You’d probably just buy a new laptop. Or your iPhone 3GS not getting iOS7?

    At this point most entry level Android devices are coming out with sustainable specs like dual core chips and around 1GB of RAM. This, coupled with Google advancing apps themselves instead of the OS, will make Android updates less and less relevant and more about individual security fixes. It also gives OEMs the freedom of making unique experiences without these long tear downs about how often they can ship version numbers. HTC has had a rough ride but they still pump out ground breaking products and awesome hardware. Instead of judging them on not taking a Froyo product, like the Incredible 2, to ICS (they did go to 2.3 Gingerbread) judge them on what they do next with the current Gen phones. Judge them if the HTC One X or S or DNA get 4.2.2 JB. Judge them on phones that are less than a year old with sustainable hardware for the next two years.

    I’m calling BIAS on this article considering you hammer HTC despite having some of the best Android update specs. Almost all of their phones have seen a version number bump once. Can you say the same thing for Samsung who still sells 2.3 Gingerbread phones?

    • ProSamsung says

      You pointed out that so many samsung devices have not seen OS updates; all of samsung high end phones have unlike HTC’s. Customers paying £100 pounds for a phone cant really expect spftware updates.

  4. Heywood Smith says

    That is the most ignorant non-fact based article I have ever read. As a former S3
    owner I will have to say the updates on it lagged so far behind I was actually getting better service using cyanogen… So if you are going to point out flaws lets keep em factual… ie plastic versus metal, build quality etc. etc. The software is all the same with rom mods being the great equalizer and both have the hardware to run anything out there. Just the facts… Don’t really care how you feel.

  5. Tony says

    I tend to agree with the author. As the owner of an HTC phone I have to say the Achilles heel of HTC is their lack of timely updates. Some blame it on the carrier, some on HTC. As a consumer, I really don’t care. Apple updates all their phones on all carriers at the same time. But HTC often skips updates completely. In my case, the phone was only out 16 months and they decided it would not receive Jelly Bean. That’s unacceptable and quite frankly one of the reasons I am reluctant to go with the HTC One.

  6. James says

    If you made a mistake gottabemobile. Will you beg a second chance? With HTC concentrating on fewer phones. They can bring more updates. Let history remain there. How about you think for yourself how many mistakes you did in the past? Everybody deserves a second chance. People learn from their mistakes and this author can’t move on. Keeps staying in the past. Keep bragging about old phones. Its time to live in the present

  7. teacherjim says

    As an Incredible 2 owner I have been frustrated with the lack of updates from HTC. I also see Steve’s point. All I am asking any manufacture or carrier to do is be honest. If the phone I have does not have the horsepower to run an OS reliably let me know. If HTC updated Incredible 2 to ICS and it was not reliable we would all be complaining. As in all digital hardware, at some point the software over powers it.

    • me says

      The international Incredible S has almost identical specs to the Droid Incredible 2 and got the ICS update in July last year, which suggests a problem with Verizon rather than HTC. (Or, that something is different under the hood that’s preventing the update)

  8. Stuart says

    Carrier sold phones have to have updates approved by the carrier. Verizon sold the phone and is responsible for it. If you want to buy a HTC unbranded and unlocked device (GSM only) then you are free to do so and complain about any updates they might or might not give.

  9. James Jackson says

    I own this phone Adam and I’m really impressed with your negative feedback of this device. Unless you are a Vzw customer, and this is problem that plagues you. Don’t assume the rest of us are unhappy. I have no problemssolving, or issues of any kind and I recommend this product to all my friends and family.

  10. Keyur says

    Now a days almost everyone is rooting their phone so delayed update from HTC is not relevant in that case. They are already working on 4.2.2 and it’s awesome os itself. Being such a popular phone I doubt HTC One owners will have any issue getting custom rom. I own One and I am planning to buy another one for my wife. It feels so much better in your hands than S4. Premium look and feel of this device is worth taking a risk despite HTC’s poor reputation of updating their phones…

  11. Charles says

    I bought an HTC One and love it – it’s the best phone experience I’ve had. I upgraded from an iPhone 4. I know five other people around me that have jumped to HTC One.

  12. mike says

    I thought Samsung also had a reputation for not getting out updates in a timely manner.
    I purchased a Gs 2 for boost mobile (sprint) back in Sept, 2012, running Ginger bread. same day of activation, I received ICS update and about 2 months ago, 4/2013 received the JB update. I’ve Had two HTC phones and and never received one update. so in my opinion, Samsung is definitely on the right track.

  13. Scott G says

    I call bullsh**t. Not to mention that Verizon is the worst carrier hands down to update devices. Htc isn’t the only one to blame. It’s a whole new ball game with the One.

  14. djinn says

    Adam Mills, do you have an axe to grind with HTC?

    “HTC One Mini looks like the iPhone5″
    “Why You Need to Think Twice About Buying the HTC On”

    What’s the next negative news about HTC?

  15. kyle smith says

    This article is bull. I own the original droid incredible and the last software update i received was in late 2012. That’s 2 and a half years after its release. As far as the hardware, the phone is still as snappy and impressive as ever. HTC has more than proven themselves in my book. The author has focused on a specific instance of HTC’s shortcoming to fabricate some nonesense that has a hot topic keyword in the title.

  16. Herb Zite says

    Motorola promised Photon 4g owners Android 4 later to tell us that they would give us $100 to buy a new Motorola phone. Thanks but no thanks. I now have my 4th Android based phone, an HTC One, and have learned that if I want the most current OS I either need to do it myself or buy an iPhone. None of my previous phones were kept up to date. I have given up on OTA manufacturer/carrier updates. Clearly the HTC One will get 4.2.2. Will it get 4.3? Who knows. Once a phone is on the market for a while the manufacturer has moved on to the next greatest device and has little or no incentive to provide updates. A few pissed off customers makes zero difference.

    • Ruthiez says

      Herb, I think you hit the nail on the head with this one. My husband and I also ended up in the whole Motorola Photon thing. Yeah, we were pissed…and didn’t want anything to do with that $100 for another phone…now we’re looking at new phones, and Hubby is thinking of buying the Moto X. I think with any of this, you’re taking a chance. When you buy any technology, you have to expect it’ll be obsolete fairly quickly. We’re lucky that with these phones, even on older OS’s, they still work perfectly. My gingerbread still works. No, I don’t have the latest fancy features…but it does what I’m used to it doing. I’m looking for a new phone…and if it has all the bells and whistles it has now 2 years from now…nothing extra from an update…should I really be upset? Just a thought. And Adam…while you do seem a bit militant against HTC…you did give me some things to think about…and those who have participated in the responses here as well.

  17. John Blair says

    Uh.. On that closing line: “It may redeem itself in the days ahead but right now is a time to be weary.” C’mon… This is supposed to be a professional writter, not a high school blog. It’s “a time to be WARY” although if I were still waiting for ICS, I would be damn WEARY. ICS? Really? I haven’t had a device with that OS verion in 18 months, and people are still WAITING FOR IT? WOW.. . JUST WOW.

  18. Trevor says

    My HTC One is still better than an iPhone.
    And yes, that statement is completely bias.

    -Rooted HTC One

  19. Vlad says

    Dear author of the post. it’s just fyi. I had samsung infuse 4g 2 years ago. samsung updated firmware only once and after that it became even more buggy then it was…
    Then Samsung switched to Galaxu and completly left poor Infuse users unattended. Think twice buying Samsung products. IMHO – i do not buy samsung products…

    • Derrik says

      I’m with you. I have a note 2 which has been out close to a year now, still one of the top of the line phones but the only move it has made is from 4.1.1 to 4.1.2 which was nearly nothing? I got this phone less than a month after its release expecting some kind of update support and have gotten none. I have been waiting for 4.2 and nope, no 4.2 and now we aren’t even going to get it? I’ll take anyone over Samsung after dropping over $600 on a phone to be stuck.

  20. Marcus says

    Oh NO, I cant use my phone unless I have the latest update!!!!! Do you really think that many people care wether they have the latest .1.1.1 verision Adam ?

  21. Alejandro says

    HTC does suck. Just remember that the marketing of the Thunderbolt was “it’s not your dream phone, it’s the one after that.” That was their flagship device on America’s #1 network, and also the first 4g LTE phone, yet they still let it rot without updates or info for MONTHS. I bought a Note 2 as soon as I could and threw that piece of junk HTC in the garbage.

    The battery sucks on all HTC’s too.

  22. Deak rivers says

    first off the htc will blow away THE I PHONE 5 the Samsung s series for many reasons one the htc SUPPORTS ADOBE FLASH! then the speed is awesome the ultra mega pixel camera give rich natural colors can do panoramic view has no limit on video recording true HD front screen can bring up a full web page in less then 2 sec with graphics allows you to download any app you wish even from the net has two stereo speakers up front supported by beats audio I EVEN ACCIDENTALLY DROPPED MINE ON CEMENT!! AND IT LANDED ON ITS LEFT SIDE CORNER RESULT BENT THE ALUMINUM NO SCREEN SHATTER NO SCRATCHES ON THE GORILLA GLASS JUST THE DENT that showed me the excellent build quality of this unit i have since gotten the rubber case with built in stand and has a raised front so if you drop it it will not hit direct on the gorilla glass if you don’t believe me get one on the 14 day trial and test it against your home computer it will do everything except print!!..lol THERE IS THE TRUTH ABOUT THE HOTTEST PHONE TO DATE THE NEW HTC ONE!!!

    • Bone Datt says

      +1. I thought twice, thrice, multiple times and I still got it too. Hell I’ve had it for almost 6 months now. People fail to realize that yearly OS updates are not as relevant anymore especially with how Google is now updating core apps.

  23. jack says

    HTC One is the best smart phone I have used and I am loving it. I got 4.2 update immediately on buying it and waiting for 4.3 now. So far the online answers to my enquiry from the company was excellent. Nothing to say against it.

  24. Tarcísio Medeiros says

    I Really don’t know Why a guy could spend U$ 650 in a cell phone, if he could not buy another one in at least 2 years. If I would like to have an old smartphone, I would get a mid-range. If I want a smartphone is to have the best smartphone for at least a year. After that, it’s time to start thinking to buy another one. I’ve bought HTC One X and ‘ll buy a HTC Butterfly S. It’s premium UI is better than have the latest android, which some custom firmware even with Sense could be better than the official latest one.

  25. Jack says

    Now in October 2013 after recieving 4.3 update and sense 5.5 how stupid the article looks. I am happy I bought HTC ONE…

  26. Thats Just The Way I'm Wired! says

    HTC ONE… EVERYTHING YOUR PHONE… and you…. ISN’T”
    Worst biased article ever, pretty unfactual, and 90% of any smartphone buyers couldn’t careless or even realize about updates or how you think you should get one every 5 minutes, samsung and apple updates every other day are crap updates that cause more problems and errors and bloated space consumption then actually updating or improving the performance of your machine…

  27. Jason Kentros says

    While your article (at the time it was written) may have seemed like a helpful warning, the HTC One is their flagship phone and they’ve obviously taken strides to make sure that it is not forgotten as it’s now November and most users should already be running 4.3 Jelly Bean. They were also first to boldly announce a release schedule for the HTC One to receive KitKat with a hard deadline of January for carrier variants, if not sooner.

  28. carrillo seranto says

    My half brother had s3x with your roomate’s half sister for 2 dollars and 99cents. That’s 50% off her standard rate.

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