Debunk: HTC Sensation Unlikely to Be a User Interface

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Quite a few sites are reporting that that a term for which HTC recently sought European trademark protection, “HTC Sensation”, may be a Sense-like user interface for its upcoming tablets. As evidence, they cite a short snippet of the goods and services description which mentions “user interface software; computer hardware and software for user interfacing, telecommunications and telecommunications services.” While this does indeed sound like a GUI, HTC has been using the term “user interface software” in most of its recent US filings (but not Europe, admittedly), including many hardware devices: Incredible, Hero, Pure, Surround, and Tilt.

That term is also used in both the recent “HTC Passion” and “HTC Arrive” filings — we initially thought Passion was a UI, actually — along with language much more suggestive of something along the lines of Sense: “Computer hardware and software for enabling, operating, enhancing, customizing, updating and managing mobile, portable, smart, voice-over-internet-protocol, and wireless devices; user interface software; computer hardware and software for delivering, enabling, creating, enhancing, customizing, updating, and managing user interfacing, telecommunications and telecommunications services.”

Considering that so many of the Taiwanese manufacturer’s hardware trademarks discuss user interfaces in one way or another, we’re inclined to believe that Sensation will actually be the name of a phone a la Desire, and not a tablet or other UI (although the linguistic similarity to Sense is certainly suggestive). That also probably holds true for Passion (it would be the second time we can think of, after Trophy, that an HTC codename was recycled for retail branding) as well as Arrive, which was tipped to Engadget as being a Sprint-bound Windows Phone 7.

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Evan Blass
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