Android Phones

HTC: Sense UI has become “cluttered” but HTC One with Android 4.0 will right the ship

March 1, 2012 | by Andrew Kameka

HTC

HTC One S Front_HERO

HTC admits that the company strayed from its initial design philosophy in later versions of Sense UI. Though the original mission of Sense was to make Android “simpler” and more beautiful, subsequent versions had the opposite effect.

Kouji Kodera, HTC’s chief product officer, spoke about the gradual complexity of Sense UI in an interview with Pocket-Lint.com. At a Mobile World Congress event, Kodera said that the company’s software became “cluttered,” but promised that the latest version of its software that appears on the HTC One series will change that.

“What we’ve done right now is a good mixture of keeping Sense and Google’s Ice Cream Sandwich element in a good balance,” Kodera told Pocket-Lint. “We haven’t tried to change everything here. We have kept a lot of the ICS element but still added the Sense flavour on top of it.”

Kodera’s comments have been expressed by Android users on several forums, podcasts, and websites, including this one. Though Sense as it appeared on the HTC Hero revolutionized Android and was for many the best Android flavor, the software grew to be bloated and cumbersome. Rather than add value or make using the phone easier, Sense often felt like it was getting in the way and dragging down hardware performance.

The HTC One X, One V, and One S will introduce lighter implementations of Sense that take things back-to-basics. There will still be customizations, but they will be less intrusive according to Kodera. The Android 4.0-based software should ideally be a start to more smart UI decisions from HTC.