A few days ago, a leaked RUU for the international HTC One X revealed just what HTC has up its sleeves for the next version of Sense, and here’s a hint: HTC is watching and listening to the developer community. Here are some of the biggest changes we’ve seen so far in Sense 4.1, and what we can most likely expect in future OTA updates for all current Sense 4.0 devices like the HTC EVO 4G LTE, the AT&T One X, and the One S.
First, multitasking issues seem to be largely resolved. This is one of the first gripes that HTC’s end users expressed, and developers have been trying to fix the issue in various custom ROMs ever since, with varying degrees of success. This is one improvement that is very much welcomed.
Second, the multitasking hardware button can be remapped to a menu button, if the user chooses. This change has already appeared in the most recent update for the AT&T One X, and it looks like it will be standard in Sense 4.1. Again, this is one of the first custom mods that the root community created, so kudos to HTC.
Third, Quick Settings have been added back to the notification bar. This was a feature of Sense 3.0 that everyone loved, and for some reason it was removed in Sense 4.0. This is another common feature in many custom ROMs, so I’m happy to see that HTC has brought it back in Sense 4.1.
And finally, HTC’s focus on speed and reduced bloat is made evident in Quadrant scores that are over 5900. Everyone says that Sense bogs down a phone, but those arguments are starting to become less and less relevant.
There are other changes that have been uncovered in Sense 4.1, as well, although they’re not nearly as big as the ones above. These include a fix for the live wallpaper lag and a dedicated button in the camera app to switch back and forth between the front and back cameras. Battery life is also supposedly improved, WiFi performs better, and all 3D effects have been removed from the home screen carousal, allowing for a completely lag-free launcher experience.
So, this all sounds fine and dandy, but the only question is: when can we expect this update on our devices? It’s my hope that HTC gets moving on this, works with all carriers involved, and pushes Sense 4.1 – along with Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) – to the entire One lineup, along with the EVO 4G LTE, as soon as possible.