HTC date UK ICS update, while T-Mobile shun Belle for the Astound

HTC-Sensation-XEThere’s good news and bad news on the software update front today, with the positive aspects coming from HTC and the negatives from T-Mobile in the USA.

First up, here’s the good news: HTC has finally got around to providing a more accurate time frame for its initial round of Ice Cream Sandwich updates, plus announcing which devices will be first to sample its delights.

Having announced in November last year its intention to upgrade a range of phones, but offering nothing more than an “early 2012” date, it’s good to see the roll out will begin before the end of March. The news was posted on the company’s official UK Facebook page, and confirmed that the first handsets to see Android 4.0 would be the Sensation and the Sensation XE.

The Sensation XL will “soon follow”, as will the Evo 3D, the Incredible S, the Desire S and the Desire HD, however not until “later this year,” which unfortunately could mean after summer. The HTC USA Facebook page doesn’t repeat the post concerning the ICS update.

T-Mobile shuns Belle.

Astound frontStill, at least some HTC Android owners know their updates are coming, which is more than can be said for owners of the T-Mobile Astound. Released early last year, the Astound is a re-badged Nokia C7, which in its original form is one of the phones currently being upgraded to Nokia Belle.

The international roll out began earlier this week, and anyone hoping the Astound would be joining the party soon is about to be disappointed. A tweet sent to Nokia US by a T-Mobile customer inquiring about the update was met with the following reply: “Unfortunately the Nokia Astound on T-Mobile will not be updated to Nokia Belle.”

Blame has been laid squarely at T-Mobile’s door for this unfortunate turn of events, with many speculating it was a case of testing and supporting the update would have been too expensive. Why support an older device when you can encourage an upgrade and a new contract, right T-Mobile?

Does the absence of any details on the Ice Cream Sandwich update for US devices indicate it’s still being tested by carriers? If so, let’s hope it doesn’t encounter any last minute problems that lead to a similar situation.

After all, despite announcements being made by all the major manufacturers, not one, single official Ice Cream Sandwich update has landed yet.