HTC vows to bring Android L to One M8, M7 soon

The handset maker will update its HTC One M8 and HTC One M7 smartphones to run on the OS, though there's no set timeline.

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The HTC One M8 Sarah Tew/CNET

Handset maker HTC said Wednesday that it plans to bring Google's newest Android operating system to its flagship phones as soon as it's able, though it couldn't yet provide a timeline.

The move is part of the company's campaign to retain customers amid years of flagging sales. Despite selling critically acclaimed products, the Taiwan company has tumbled out of the top rankings of smartphone makers, unable to match the much larger advertising budgets of powerhouses such as Samsung or Apple.

Google used its annual I/O developer conference on Wednesday to unveil its latest version of Android, dubbed "L," which includes a revamped notification system, an updated user interface, and a new battery-saving mode.

HTC soon after said it plans to update its HTC One M8 and the One M7, last year's flagship phone, to run on Android L "within 90 days of receiving final software from Google."

The promise is part of HTC's "Advantage" program, a guarantee that includes access to the latest version of Android and a replacement phone if the glass is cracked within the first year. The customer-friendly move is one attempt to get around the marketing behemoth of Samsung and Apple.

Still, Google hasn't yet provided the official software to phone makers and chipset manufacturers to start working on release software, HTC said. The software update timeline won't start until Google releases that final software, HTC said, adding that device updates will vary depending on region, carrier, and device.

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