HTC has been struggling to breathe some new life into its smartphone business. This year has brought the company some new, interesting models, and while sales have reflected a positive reception so far, it still hasn’t been quite the level of response HTC sorely needs; if the manufacturer really wishes to improve its fortunes, that could mean thinking outside the box. Late last month, we heard a rumor about just such a departure from its comfort zone, with word that HTC might be developing some sort of custom smartphone platform specifically for use in China. While we still lack many details, a new image has emerged that may just give us our first look at the effort.
While the picture above was leaked along with the not that it may be a future version of sense, it’s already attracting a lot of speculation that this could instead be a forked version of Android being used for that Chinese project.
There’s no outright evidence for such an ID, but while what we can see here may share elements with Sense 5, it’s enough of a change – and especially while that release is still so new – that it’s finding itself drawn in to those custom platform rumors.
Assuming for the moment that we are looking at a fork of some kind (and we’re going to need to see some more evidence, either way), what do you think of what HTC has here? A good start to the efforts? Ripping off Windows Phone a little hard?