How to Update Your HTC Sensation to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich

The ball is now well and truly rolling with the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update, with major manufacturers HTC and Samsung now sending the update out to their phones around the world.

HTC has already announced that the first phones to get the update will be from its Sensation family – specifically the Sensation and Sensation XE – followed by the Sensation 4G and Sensation XL models. Also confirmed to be getting the update at a later date is the Desire S, Desire HD, Incredible S, EVO 3D and Rhyme handsets.

The update has slowly started rolling out to Sensation handsets in parts of Europe, though there is no word of a UK release just yet. To find out when your network is releasing the update, check the latest at the bottom of this page.

Although the update isn’t hitting the UK just yet, we’re getting you prepared with a full guide on updating your HTC smartphone to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. There are two ways of doing it, both of which we’ll walk you through, but firstly we need to make sure your phone is backed up, just in case. The update will not erase any data from your phone, although widgets and homescreen backgrounds may be reset to default during the process.


Normally we would recommend using to create a backup of your phone, but as HTC has just announced the imminent closure of the service, we’ll steer you clear of using that for now. Instead, simply open up the Android Market (Play Shop) and search for ‘MyBackup’. This is a fantastic free app that will let you easily backup the contents of your phone either to an account stored online, or to a Micro SD card if you have one inserted.

MyBackup will back up your Applications, Photos, Contacts, Call log, Browser Bookmarks, SMS (text messages), MMS, Calendar, System Settings, Home Screens (including shortcut positions), Alarms, Dictionary, and Music Playlists. Once you have MyBackup installed, open it up and follow the steps below to create a backup of either your Apps and Photos or Data (everything else), or both.

Apps and Photo Backup

Data Backup

The screenshots above show saving the backup to an inserted Micro SD card. However, if you don’t have one of these, MyBackup offers you the option of saving your backups online. The steps are similar, but when you select ‘Online’ on screen 3, you’ll then be prompted to choose a password, confirm it again and then enter an email account. Do this, then tap OK and your backup will take place. Once this is done you’ll be given a PIN number and password. Write these down, as if you need to restore your backup (which will only be necessary if the update goes awry), you’ll be asked to enter these details.

Updating Over the Air

HTC’s Sync software for PC doesn’t offer the option to update using a USB cable, so the only way to update is by downloading the update straight to your phone, cable-free and from the web. Thankfully this is a simple process, so all you need to do is follow these simple steps to tell your phone to check for the update.

  1. Touch Menu Button
  2. Touch Settings
  3. Scroll Down and Touch About Phone
  4. Touch Software Updates
  5. Touch Check Now

Naturally your phone should show a pop-up message saying that a software update is available for your phone, although the above method will tell your phone to search manually. Before you choose to go hunting for your Ice Cream Sandwich update, firstly ensure that your phone is well charged (above 75%), connected to a good Wi-Fi network, and has a Micro SD card inserted.

If you’re all good with those three checks, when your phone finds the update select the option to download via Wi-Fi or Cable only. Next you’ll need to select Install Now followed by tapping OK. The phone will download and automatically install the update for you, so just let it run. Usually the process will take between 5 and 10 minutes.

When the phone comes back on you’ll need to go through some initial setup steps, but once that’s done you should find your phone updated to the latest version of Android with all of your stuff still intact. If you’ve lost any data, simply use the MyBackup app to restore your files.

When Can I Get it?

Although the ICS update for HTC’s Sensation officially began rolling out a while back, UK phones are only just starting to get it. We’ll be keeping this section updated so you guys know exactly when to expect the update.

Vodafone – Vodafone is the first network to start issuing the update for its customers, issuing a statement last night to say that they had finished testing the update, and it would start rolling out now. Vodafone Sensation owners – check for updates!

O2 – O2 has not spoken out about the availability of the update.

Orange – Orange has not spoken out about the availability of the update.

T-Mobile – T-Mobile has not spoken out about the availability of the update.

Three – Three has not spoken out about the availability of the update.

SIM-Free – (02/04/2012) Our SIM-Free HTC Sensation has just updated to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. We’re waiting to hear if others are getting the update as well.

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