The Google Play edition experiment mostly flopped, being essentially replaced with the Android One initiative in several emerging markets around the world, but at least a couple of GPe devices should still receive official Marshmallow updates.
First in line, the non-skinned HTC One M8 broke cover in March 2014 running Android 4.4 KitKat, scoring 5.0 Lollipop less than a year ago before reaching hardware EOL, and likely moving to 6.0 in a matter of days.
Yes, days, a week or two tops, as HTC’s perennially candid VP of Product Management Mo Versi acknowledges a “slight delay” on Twitter, nonetheless expecting final technical approval “within next few days.”
Once TA is secured, there are no carriers to further hamper the rollout, although it’s unclear why the Taiwanese OEM’s software engineers needed to “re-spin SW” in the first place. Hopefully, we’re not looking at critical bugs plaguing the Marshmallow user experience, or postponing the imminent 6.0 dispatch on the “international” M8, followed by network-locked North American variants.
Meanwhile, Motorola’s silence on the Moto G GPe upgrading front also feels a bit concerning, whereas Google Play editions of the Sony Z Ultra and LG G Pad 8.3 are approaching their 24-month support cut-off time, so don’t act shocked if they stick to 5.1 Lollipop for good.