At first, the unsubstantiated news of a developer edition of the HTC One seemed like just an attempt to stir up a bit of chaos for fans who may have been disappointed by Google I/O's lack of hardware announcements. But as the week wore on, the rumors got louder, and now the person responsible for the rumor of the "Google Edition" of the Samsung Galaxy S 4 claims he's got the skinny on the developer version of the HTC One, too..
Geek.com's Russel Holly alleges that multiple sources have hinted at a "Senseless Edition" of an HTC One, adding that it will likely launch in the next few weeks, beginning in the United States. Phandroid posits that the specificity of the information suggests that this means it will be sold through the Google Play store, and the rumor hasn't yet been linked to any carriers. Phandroid also points out that during the announcement of the developer version of the Galaxy S 4, an HTC rep had tweeted that interested users could buy the handset or "wait," leading many to believe that the tweet was alluding to this specific handset. That tweet was later dispelled by HTC Senior Global Online Communications Manager Jeff Gordon, who came out and said that "HTC is not currently planning a 'Nexus Edition' of the HTC One."
There is also other evidence lending credence to the "Google Edition" rumor, like the fact that HTC is already so actively engaged in its modding community. It even started a division called HTCDev to give the community a chance to work alongside developers.
Holly suggests in his article that if a "plain" version of the HTC One were to launch, it would only make the company look bad—as if it were only trying to get in the game alongside the Galaxy S 4. He also notes that a stock version of the HTC One wouldn't be able to take advantage of things like Beats Audio or ImageSense, which are two major selling points for the handset. And with everything that HTC is going through right now—like several senior HTC employees departing after the HTC First's poor sales and HTC selling only half as many units of the flagship One as the Galaxy S 4—the last thing it needs is to make a decision to try to reel in more customers, only to have it backfire.
Still, other sources have also come out saying that there have been multiple confirmations that the "Google Edition" of the HTC One is likely imminent, but they argue that releasing such a device would only further help sales of the smartphone for the struggling company.
For now, the "Google Edition" of the HTC One remains just a rumor. Sources to Geek.com claim that this version of the One will be announced within the next two weeks, which apparently falls in line with HTC's promise that it's ramping up production to meet with "strong demand." Regardless, this is certainly one rumor that we'll be watching.