Android 4.4 KitKat rollout schedule: Latest from Sony, HTC, LG, Samsung, Dell and Motorola

Updated: Moto X owners in the US will be the first non-Nexus devices to get KitKat, possibly even ahead of the Google Play editions of Samsung and HTC's flagship devices.
Written by Liam Tung, Contributing Writer

Google-owned Motorola has jumped to the head of the non-Nexus Android pack, pushing out 4.4 KitKat in the US this week, as HTC confirms US HTC One owners will get the update at the same time as UK owners.

Sony made a recently splash by announcing KitKat would arrive on five Xperia devices - however, it looks like US-owners of the Moto X will be the first to get KitKat, with T-Mobile starting the roll out on Thursday, according to Motorola. Verizon should also start the rollout to Moto X devices soon, Motorola said, although it made no mention of when AT&T will start.  

Release notes for the update list a number of improvements to the phone dialler, Gallery photo editing, support for Square's credit card reader and wider NFC support.

According to Motorola's support pages, Verizon plans to deliver KitKat to the Moto X, Droid Ultra, Droid Maxx, Droid Mini, though it hasn't given a timeframe for when it will arrive. 

Similarly, Sony hasn't provided any updates on when it will roll out KitKat to its Android devices, but has previously confirmed 4.4 will come to Xperia Z, Xperia ZL, Xperia Tablet Z, Xperia Z Ultra, and Xperia Z1 handsets. The company notes that the phased rollout may vary by market and carrier and has advised Xperia owners to keep an eye out on its @SonyMobileNews Twitter account for the specific timing of the release.

However, most of those devices will get Jelly Bean first: Sony said it will also begin rolling out Android 4.3 over the next month to the Xperia Z, Xperia ZL, Xperia ZR, Xperia Tablet Z, Xperia SP, Xperia Z Ultra and Xperia Z1. Again, that may vary by market or carrier.

HTC has just begun rolling out Android 4.3 with Sense 5.5 to HTC One handsets in the UK, and is eyeing an early 2014 timeline for bringing KitKat. "Across EMEA, HTC will work with local carriers to begin the roll-out of Android 4.4 with Sense 5.5 for the HTC One from end of January.

"The Google Play edition will start to receive the update earlier, starting from the end of November," a spokesperson told ZDNet. HTC has handed off its KitKat build for the the Google Play edition of the HTC One, so now it's up to Google to release it through Google Play. 

HTC hasn't provided an update on the timing and version of Android for the HTC One max and the HTC One mini, but details will follow. Meanwhile, HTC US this week confirmed it will push KitKat to HTC One owners in the same timeframe as the UK. 

There's still no word from Samsung about its KitKat schedule for the Galaxy S4 and Note 3. However, Google has already confirmed that the Galaxy S4 Google Play Edition with 4.4 should be coming soon. "Samsung UK will announce rollout plans for Android 4.4 in due course," a spokesperson told ZDNet. However, anyone with a Samsung Galaxy Nexus won't be getting KitKat at all — Google has said the handset is too old to get the OS.

Not so for the Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 tablets, however — the Android team said on Twitter earlier this month that it has started pushing out 4.4 to the devices. The 2012 and 2013 wi-fi versions of the Nexus 7 will be among the first to get the update, the team said.

The Nexus 4 is also reportedly now eligible for KitKat, with some users seeing the update arriving this week.

While LG is behind Google's fast-selling Nexus 5, the South Korean company hasn't released a schedule for when its own Android devices, such as the G2 smartphone, G Pad tablet, and Optimus range, will get KitKat.

Huawei this week posted on Weibo it will release KitKat for the domestic version of its super slim Ascend P6 by the end of January, though it's not clear whether that extends to international customers. ZDNet is waiting for a response from Huawei UK to answer that question. 

Dell has of yet provided no details about whether KitKat or Jelly Bean will reach its Android Venue 7 and Venue 8 slates, which both run Android 4.2. "Dell continually assesses its product portfolio in each country where it does business and not all products are available in all countries. At present Dell doesn't have a timeline on whether the Android-based tablets will be made available in Western Europe, but continues to assess the opportunity in that region," a spokesperson told ZDNet. Acer has no official timeline for the release of KitKat, a spokesman for the company said.

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