Three confirms HTC Hero Éclair update delayed; OTA delivery in single package planned

by Hero on July 30, 2010

in Firmware

ThreeTwo down, one to go. Both T-Mobile and Orange have received the Android 2.1 update for the HTC Hero handsets, however Three users are still waiting. They were targeting a “Mid to late July” timeframe however the company has now confirmed that it has been delayed.

Brendan Arndt from Three said that the software has been submitted to Google to get the “final go-ahead” and that “we’re not clear on the timescales for this yet.” He blamed the fact that Three operates within a smaller team than some of their bigger rivals and a number of recent high profile launches including the iPhone 4 and Samsung Galaxy S has stretched the team.

To be fair he apologised and said that “2.1 Hero update hasn’t gone through testing and approvals as quickly or as smoothly as we’d have wanted.” We also now know that the update will be over-the-air (OTA) and will land in a single package as opposed to the previous updates that came with a preparatory update before the full Android 2.1 download. There’s still no timeline for release but Arndt promised to reveal further information as soon as he has it. Fingers crossed it at least lands in August…

Brendan Arndt (Three) comment in full:

Thanks for all your patience regarding the 2.1 update for HTC Hero. We have now tested and approved the software and this has been submitted to Google to get the final go-ahead. We’re hoping that they can push this through as quickly as possible, but we’re not clear on the timescales for this yet.

Really sorry for the delay on this update. We’ve been working really hard to approve and launch lots of handsets and updates this month including iPhone 4 and Samsung Galaxy S, and the 2.1 update for Hero has had to queue up alongside these other big launches, particularly the Galaxy S which took a number of versions of software to get right. We’re a smaller network than some of our competitors, and while that has its advantages it also means that our testing team doesn’t have limitless resources. We’ve done our best to manage priorities, but the 2.1 Hero update hasn’t gone through testing and approvals as quickly or as smoothly as we’d have wanted – HTC did have to supply us with a couple of versions until we were satisfied it was bug free. We really wanted to get this to you for the end of July, but we’ve missed our deadline – I’m really sorry I can’t bring you better news on a Friday afternoon but at least you’re now in full possession of the facts.

As soon as we know more from Google on their timescales we’ll let you know.

Moderator comment:

The 2.1 update for Hero contains a lot of new functionality. Most Heroes on our network are currently on 1.6, so this is a big version change. Our testing process is not about adding in Planet 3, but we need to check that any changes don’t break the functionality we have already built for the phone, like Skype, Windows Live Messenger and My3. We also need to test that it works seamlessly with our network settings, and that the technical changes don’t impact the way you can send MMS or roam onto 2G for voice, text or data for example. The reason we want to do a thorough job on this is because of the big version change – 2.1 to 2.2 for example would be a much simpler process – plus we’ve had to prioritise this testing along with all of the other updates and launches we’ve currently got on the roadmap. We promise that we are going as quickly as we can, and we’ll get the update to you as soon as possible.

To answer a couple of the other questions that have been asked, the update will come as one package and will be delivered OTA. You’ll get a notification in your top notification bar when it’s ready.

{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Mahfooz July 30, 2010 at 6:19 PM

Unbelievable, I am definitely getting a SIM-free phone next time. Might even be September for all we know.

2 glenn July 30, 2010 at 8:30 PM

@Brendan arndt …. thanks brendan for telling us what we suspected all along you thank us for our patience but if you bothered to read any of the previous posts you would know that our patience ran out a long time ago.. we appreciate you have a smaller team than the rest but to also state that other projects ie I phone4 contributed to the delay is hard to swallow ,it shows exactly where 3 priorities are .. new products new customers come first existing customers bottom of the pile, after all why should you care we are already locked into 2 year contracts …

3 Allee July 30, 2010 at 8:47 PM

*not happy*


4 cashmang July 30, 2010 at 9:39 PM

well i would like to say, any news is good news, im waiting for the 3uk update to come up and im still excited about it :)

so thanks 3uk for being honest and such :)

5 asif July 30, 2010 at 11:34 PM

Although I agree this has taken far too long I have to say my phone has been working ok so not really too bothered about the delay…just hope the update is worth it and adds alot!

I think the more important thing here is the message suggest something new….with the Hero be getting a 2.2 update? It’s implied…and that would be great….considering everyone else has said this is the last update!

6 phil July 31, 2010 at 12:58 AM

Yet another let down i have all my family on the three network all contracts and mobile broadband. Time to let the contracts run out and never use 3 again ,every other networks done their job why not 3 .
sick off wateing sick of Indian call centers that cant tell you the truth come on i spend over £100 a month on three contracts they grab ur money and forget about you htc treated us bad now 3 are doin the same never again !!!

7 Mark July 31, 2010 at 8:16 AM

If only I was on 1.6 I’d be fairly happy. But half the apps in the market don’t work on the 1.5 I’m actually stuck with.

8 hardythemod July 31, 2010 at 1:30 PM

Well well well, we did’t see this coming did we?
That’s my mind made up now, I’m rooting and never going with three again and will tell everyone I know to stay clear

9 phil August 1, 2010 at 11:51 PM

Three you’re an utter disgrace. Why do you keep lying to customers? Why don’t you admit that the 2.1 android update will never appear on the HTC Hero? Why has other networks released it and three havent?

I had the HTC Hero but got sick and tired of waiting. I got an iphone instead.

You should refund all customers that have an HTC Hero or upgrade them to an HTC Desire FREE OF CHARGE.

10 Nick August 2, 2010 at 11:44 AM

Thought you guys might appreciate this email convo I have sent to three… from before this post. Read the bottom email first then the top one, I think you will get an idea of how pissed at 3 I was when I wrote the email.


Hi guys,

Thank you for calling me back on Friday in regards to my email below. I do appreciate the call even though your technical team representative didnt understand my basic question then cut me off, then to really add insult to injury didn’t then call me back.

In the past I have had excellent customer services from 3UK as I have always gone into the shop, which is what I shall be doing from now on, but I found your phone technical team lacked basic knowledge and bear in mind you called me… if you didnt have an answer, you should have either looked it up online or not bothered at all.

My question below is this: “Just wondering if there is any news on when you will be releasing the Android 2.1 software update for the HTC Hero?”

Now when I get a call the technical representative tells me 2.1 isn’t a version and that currently there is either 3.5 or 3.7 on offer only… sorry but there are no releases of Android 3.7 available, I believe 2.2 is the highest current release. I was also told its a PC based update and not OTA (Over the air), as far as I’m aware its OTA only. I explained the release is either known as Eclaire or Froyo… still no dice.

So after explaining this I get put on hold for 5 minutes, then called back and told again that I am wrong, but that if I want to I can return my phone for repair… Well my phone isn’t broken, its just running on an older version of Android, so that doesn’t help, I suggested that I speak to someone else…. and I get cut off.

I understand that not all phone representatives have indevidual knowledge of different handsets and their softwares but Android software versions are pretty basic knowledge I would think.

I will be going into the westwood cross 3UK shop to discuss this but I thought I would let you know I have answered my own question with a simple Google search, it might be worth your technical team reading this, as I understand it the HTC Hero was a popular phone and as I have gathered from comments online a lot of people are eagerly awaiting this software release.

If you fancy responding to back up this post and if possible a confirmed date that would be excellent,


Nick Hurst

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Nick Hurst
Date: Tue, Jul 20, 2010 at 12:12 PM
Subject: HTC Android 2.2 Update

Hi guys,

Just wondering if there is any news on when you will be releasing the Android 2.1 software update for the HTC Hero?

It’s been available for some weeks now so just a heads up of when it will be coming would be awesome.

Plus how do I actually download it? Will it be over the air?

Kind Regards,

Nick Hurst

11 pip August 2, 2010 at 12:06 PM

Maybe you should be looking after your current customers and not making excuses re the iPhone and Samsung. This is utterly pathetic. Like cancelling my contract pathetic. I will NEVER beusing Three again. And I had such high hopes…

12 WigglePig August 2, 2010 at 2:13 PM

So, is there going to be an “official” announcement on when we might be likely to see this update? Given that Google must have given similar approval to the versions of Eclair OTAs by the other networks there must be some indication of how long they will take.

I’m mainly wondering because my contract is up for renewal in February and, on current form, I’m not expecting to se the update by then.

13 Richard John August 2, 2010 at 2:18 PM

I have to add my 2p to this. I really am quite annoyed at 3uk for dragging their heels, especially as their excuse is “people who aren’t currently customers are more important to us”.

I really don’t care how big or small they – if they promise to do something, do it in the timescales promised. bring in contractors, etc. to get the damn job done.

I’ve been with 3 for a long time and got my friends and family to switch as well. They’ve screwed me a few times (like taking the 3 like home away) but I’ve always been loyal. This just proves that loyalty results in a kick in the teeth.

14 JeeBee August 2, 2010 at 6:14 PM

When I got my HTC Hero in December last year, the guy from Three said that there would be an update to 2.0 within a month or two.

So it’s August now, and I’m still on 1.5, and no upgrade has been seen to date. I hope that we get this update to 2.1 this month, and that 2.2 follows before the end of the year as a measure of goodwill (since they’ve said it will be easier!). Therefore I have to say that I am annoyed with Three. At least the release is now with Google for approval.

At the current rate my contract will have run out before I see an update. At least it will be OTA…

15 Nigel August 3, 2010 at 7:29 AM

When HTC originally released the update we were told it was a 2 part download as it was too large to do ota in one….now 3 have a play with it and hey presto,,,,,one part. So it has to be said…what’s the 3 update missing??

16 Luca August 3, 2010 at 10:13 AM

the worst customer (mobile) experience in my life… and not only for HTC! I’m thinking about change and go with t-mobile, same contract, £10 instead of £15… thanks 3. and my next mobile won’t be HTC!

17 Vinnie August 3, 2010 at 12:20 PM

I waited too long and ultimately followed goldcard method to update my Three phone to 2.1 version. I installed generic unbranded version from HTC which really made a difference. Somehow phone runs faster and allows me to search through loads of applications in Android Marketplace which were otherwise not visible there. Its possible that since majority of applications are made for 2.1, they were not appearing for 1.5 version; however I come across some apps which were not available on Three phone but available on generic HTC hero 1.5.

I can update google maps as and when new version is released by Google.

It took a while to get planet3 working on phone though. I rarely use MMS functionality so not sure if it is working.

So now even if 2.1 is released by Three, I wont be updating my phone. I am happy with unbranded generic copy.

18 adam August 8, 2010 at 1:01 PM

typical 3 , have great deals and in all honesty a good company until it comes to do with anything customer service/support

also they need to take off the patch that will allow you to install a custom ROM instead of the rubbish thats already on there i had to do the goldcard process to install villainROM12 and that was a mission

19 steven August 10, 2010 at 6:46 PM

three will not be releasing the 2.1 for the hero full version.

also not supporting 2.2

if they do it will be a limited 2.1 version and missing a lot.

mark my words

20 cashmang August 10, 2010 at 10:40 PM

i hope not, after all this waiting of holding back from gold carding

otherwise i will have to shake my fist to the sky XD

21 Rob August 14, 2010 at 5:57 PM

I got my Htc hero on a contract from a 3 shop in mid July 2010, at first I said no thanks it on 1.5
I need 2.1 update, I was told “don’t worry sir you be on 2.1 by the end of the July, just sign here.. Like a mug I did. I would have never got the phone if I knew that I still be on 2.1

22 Rob August 14, 2010 at 6:00 PM

I got my Htc hero on a contract from a 3 shop in mid July 2010, at first I said no thanks it’s on 1.5
I need a 2.1 update, I was told “don’t worry sir you be on 2.1 by the end of the July, just sign here.. Like a mug I did. I would have never got the phone if I knew that I still be on 1.5

23 Rob August 14, 2010 at 6:13 PM

Good news! and about time, Just phone three and your be getting the update 0600 AUGUST 16, 2010
for HTC HERO from 1.5 to 2.1 OTA.
(look like they kept to their 2 two weeks promise)

24 Wolfie August 16, 2010 at 9:39 AM

Eeeeerm think 3 saw ya coming with that statement Rob, thanks for that

25 Wolfie August 16, 2010 at 9:52 AM

htc said the update was too large for 1 download It’ll be interesting to see what 3 have hacked out of the update!!

26 Chris August 18, 2010 at 3:09 PM

Well im new on this blog, but it all sounds so familiar!
Ive tried the date thing with no joy – now I realise its cos im on 3!

Has anyone actually managed to get the update on 3 yet? do you have to phone them or something? Also does any one know if the update will fix the bluetooth issues?

27 Mark August 20, 2010 at 10:31 AM

just spoke to 3 and asked about 2,1 update on hero all they wanted to talk about was 2,2 update for desire .once i got through to them i was not interested with that they said there was no 2,1 update planned for the hero on 3 network ,i was not happy .i have three accounts with them and am thinking of buying out all three to go with a network who is not always last to everything and who gives a little care to there customers.

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