TouchWiz, Motoblur, Sense: these skins are meant to improve on the stock Android interface, but do we still need them with Ice Cream Sandwich? HTC believes so and is pressing ahead with Sense 4.0, expected to arrive first on the upcoming HTC Ville and Edge.
PocketNow has tried an early build and says 4.0 reduces Sense 3.5’s visual clutter, adds a 3D card-like task switcher, and — finally — supports a landscape home screen.
Beats Audio will reportedly be opened up to third-party apps, instead of being limited to the default music player. Elsewhere, email is said to have been overhauled, particularly threaded messages and Exchange pushed email: Smart Sync can predict usage habits to save battery life.
Also clever is the upgraded camera app’s ability to avoid blinks (detects faces and picks the best of five photos taken in quick succession) and the new guest mode (decide which apps are visible if a friend borrows your phone).
Apparently, DropBox integration goes so far as including 50GB free space when you first setup the phone, and apps treat it like another drive on the handset.
And this is interesting:
According to a trusted source, HTC Sense 4.0 devices will not have on-screen keys as found on the Galaxy Nexus. Also, devices in the near future will go with a 3-button configuration for Ice Cream Sandwich devices, instead of the current 4.
I’ll reserve judgement until we confirm all these features in a final build, but some interesting additions for sure. Enough to make you a believer? [PocketNow]