Last month, Google produced three new Android updates. The first, Android 4.4.3 KitKat, rolled out on June 4th, the same day that Apple announced its iOS 8 update. Later that month, the company pushed out a brand new Android 4.4.4 KitKat update, a small update for Nexus users that brought a patch for an OpenSSL vulnerability. The update was a bit of a surprise given its close proximity to the Android 4.4.3 KitKat release. (The third update was Android L.)
Companies like Motorola and Sony skipped over Android 4.4.3 KitKat in favor of Android 4.4.4 KitKat. Their Android 4.4.4 KitKat updates delivered Android 4.4.3’s bug fixes, enhancements and the patch for the OpenSSL issue. And while it appeared that most companies would be skipping over Android 4.4.3 for Android 4.4.4 KitKat, the Android 4.4.3 KitKat roll out pushed on today.
Today, Sprint is pushing out the HTC One M8 Android 4.4.3 KitKat update, an update that HTC says ropes in the fixes from Android 4.4.4 KitKat. The update brings a number of bug fixes on board and it also delivers an HD Voice indicator and support for Wi-Fi Calling. It may not be a massive update but it looks like it could help shore up Android 4.4.2 KitKat problems.
HTC’s Mo Versi says that the HTC One M7, last years model, will not be getting Android 4.4.4 KitKat and will instead be getting Android 4.4.3 KitKat as well. He says that the next Android update for the HTC One M7 will be the Android L update that Google announced on stage at Google I/O 2014 back in late June. Android L is currently without a specific release date though HTC has said that it will deliver the update within 90 days of its initial release.
— Mo (@moversi) July 15, 2014
This likely means that the HTC One M8’s next update will be get Android L, an update that is currently rumored to be arriving in October, November or December.
Sprint’s HTC One M8 is the first variant to get the Android 4.4.3 KitKat update but chances are, the other updates are not far behind. AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon typically roll out updates within a few weeks of each other so these carriers could potentially push out their own Android 4.4.3 updates in July or August ahead of the Android L release.
HTC is just the latest company to push out a brand new update to Android 4.4 KitKat. Sony recently rolled out Android 4.4.4 KitKat updates to its Xperia Z1, Xperia Z1 Compact and Xperia Z Ultra and Motorola is now rolling out Android 4.4.4 KitKat to the Moto E, Moto G, Moto X, Droid Ultra, Droid MAXX, and Droid Mini.
Rumors suggest that Samsung, the world’s largest Android manufacturer, has a couple of Android 4.4.3 KitKat (or Android 4.4.4 KitKat) updates up its sleeve as well. The company is reportedly working on Galaxy S5 Android 4.4.3 KitKat and Galaxy S4 LTE-A updates behind the scenes. The Galaxy S5’s update was rumored for June while the Galaxy S4 LTE-A update was rumored for July.
Neither update has been confirmed by Samsung so it’s unclear when these two updates might roll out. It’s also unclear if Samsung, like Sony and Motorola, has shifted to Android 4.4.4 KitKat. Samsung typically does not confirm smaller updates ahead of time which means that Galaxy device owners will likely be waiting in the dark as we push towards the fall.
At this time, it’s not clear if HTC will push out Android 4.4.3 KitKat for any other devices beyond the HTC One M7 and the HTC One M8, its former flagship and its current flagship.