Sprint HTC One will launch without carrier branding, clean as a newborn baby


Good news for those that don’t want their carrier tagging up their smartphones (I’m looking at you Verizon), the HTC One on Sprint will come completely devoid of any carrier branding. PocketNow discovered this after they received their review unit (our AT&T model will be arriving soon) and believe it or not, this isn’t really out of the ordinary for Sprint. You may remember the Galaxy Note 2 came without any of Sprint’s branding, not even on the back battery cover like on the AT&T model.

Apparently, this new trend at Sprint could have something to do with the carrier’s move to begin unlocking some of their handsets for use on Virgin Mobile and Boost Mobile in the near future. Sprint’s Director of Product Marketing issued the following statement:

The movement has less to do with de-emphasizing our brand and more to do with the flexibility that it provides us in our multi-brand strategy. Increasingly, we are launching similar devices on both our Sprint brand and our no contract brands, Virgin Mobile and Boost. Removing the carrier brand gives us manufacturing and logistical economies in the event that we launch the same device on multiple brands. Also there is a difference between hardware branding and software branding. Sprint is still very focused on software branding which can be dynamic in nature.

While handsets may not have Sprint’s logo plastered anywhere on the hardware, as Sprint mentioned, they still offer “Sprint ID,” a homescreen/launcher tied to many of Sprint’s services via software. Of course, those can easily be replaced with one of the many launcher replacements available in the Play Store. When it comes to carrier branding, does it really bother any of our readers out there?

Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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  1. My Sprint GS3 has the Sprint branding on the back cover.

  2. Carrier branding bothers me.

    Good 1st move.

  3. Funny, I would take Verizon’s name twenty times over on my phone before going back to the sprint network! Just my feelings.

    1. I left Verizon for Sprint because I felt like I was getting bent over from behind every month. I left Sprint because their network is a complete joke. Now I’m on T-Mobile prepaid with my Nexus 4 & pretty happy so far, knock on wood. Hopefully that fruit phone doesn’t do too much damage.

      1. Yeah, I’ll avoid Verizon and Sprint all together. I can’t wait till Tmobile rolls out LTE in Seattle. HSPA speeds on Tmobile are good, but the building penetration sucks.

        1. Yeah, I’ve noticed that about their building penetration, but here’s the thing. Because I ported to Google Voice and use VoIP, as long as I can connect to a decent wifi signal inside, and I usually can, it doesn’t matter!

      2. Good to know, especially with their deals! My work phone, droid incredible, has horrible service to my surprise ! I have never had an issue with ATT and their 4G LTE

  4. my S3 got ATT in the back cover. but you can never see it because IT HAS A FREAKING CASE. lol i hate carrier branding too. i probably gonna settle with the ATT version. on 19th if i sell my s3 before that

  5. No carrier branding on my Sprint Nexus S

  6. I can’t seem to find any carrier’s branding on my Nexus 4…hmmmm must have gotten a faulty unit….

    1. The display sensitivity is awful. All of them are faulty.

      1. On the Nexus 4? I haven’t had any sensitivity problems on mine yet… have you used one? This is actually the first I’ve heard of this issue…and you claim all of them are faulty? hmmmm interesting.

          1. Good job, two of those are actually from the same person, but okay. I’m sure there are some “magic” fixes out there for a lot of things..just like how many custom kernels there are that save battery life? Yeah…

          2. Sorry, I forgot kernel tweaks were ‘magic’. If you bothered to read the comments this fix was well received and works by loading new touch firmware into the kernel. The fix has been incorporated into other kernels as well.

          3. do you gentlemen have any idea how mad you are going?

      2. all is quite a strong word. I haven’t noticed any difference in between nexus 4 and evo lte

      3. weird, my Nexus 4 was the best when it came to sensitivity! Weird, sorry to hear! I will look into a new one if u can!

    2. My E4GT has no branding on it, either. Edit: I was mistaken. I forgot that I don’t have the stock back cover anymore.

  7. So wait, it doesn’t say Sprint but it runs on their CDMA with presumable support for their WiMax, meaning that it’s working on a crazy standard that no one else in the world dreams of supporting? Sure, as long as there is no sticker!

    1. No, no WiMax support. LTE support.

      1. No LTE support, either. :

        1. What are you talking about? The htc one does support lte and sprint has deployed lte (albeit slowly and in limited amount of markets)

          1. I was being sarcastic. There’s still no sign of LTE in my area, not even piggy-backing on another carrier’s towers.

    2. Have you been sleeping under a rock?

  8. now, only if it could come without bloatware (or at least removable bloatware)!

    1. Most bloatwares can be disabled now…

      1. Unfortunately not all bloat can be removed, and seeing as the device is now owned by the user when they get on a contract or by it, we should also have the right to remove it without having to root.

    2. Its already been stated that the sprint stuff can simply be uninstalled, not sure about the att version though.

  9. I don’t really mind carrier branding too much, as long as it stays on the back. Verizon takes it way too far (look at the darn Galaxy Note 2).

  10. BM, what are you talking about? They dumped WiMax a long time ago

    1. Really! How come I can get 9-12 down and 2-3 up using Sprint WiMax in Palm Beach County. Seems they just put up LTE here as well, few months early.

  11. Best move hTC has ever done, great job!

  12. I wonder if HTC said, it’ll be 4 months for the screen printing and Sprint just said, nm, just ship em, we’ll make up something. ;)

    1. I was thinking that same thing

  13. wow sprint! impressed!!! ATT take note! Verizon, well you have a long ways to go with all your crazy names!

    1. and verizon branding on the home button of the note2…lol

  14. Never even realized my Note2 had branding just had to look for it right now. All it has is the AT&T globe on the back no text.

  15. The thing I don’t like about the sprint HTC One is that it only supports 900mhz LTE spectrum and not the 800mhz that sprint will release later this year. the lower the spectrum, the better the signal. It would be harder to get indoor LTE than other 4G phones. So the phone is not exactly future proof.

  16. sprint galaxy note 2 doesn’t have carrier branding either.. hopefully they continue this with all their high end devices

  17. It’s a step in the right direction. Hopefully they get better about bloatware, or at least give people the option to remove it.

  18. I’m so glad that no phones in Australia get carrier brands swamped all over them, I mean seriously it drives me crazy and I don’t even live in America. It absolutely ruins the phones look, iPhones don’t branded either, so why should Android?

  19. I won’t buy a phone if it has carrier branding. I won’t buy a phone if it isn’t a Nexus. I still wouldn’t buy a Nexus phone with carrier branding (I’m looking at you, Verizon and Sprint) because it isn’t a “true” Nexus, in that Google still has to get OTAs approved through the carrier, and is still subject to their whims as to what they can/can’t include (such as Google Wallet). I hate seeing any mention of my carrier on my device, even in software, truth be told, because it just reminds me who is raping me every month for money. All of them do, it’s just a matter of degree. T-Mobile (the least painful of the bunch) still makes me pay for unlimited voice and unlimited texts (neither of which I use) to be able to have unlimited data (which I need).

  20. Wow… Too bad Sprint’s network sux.

    I have a question. Does anyone have good LTE in Houston? I still have WiMax and it’s pretty sketchy across Houston. The main areas I want to know are around the Beltway and a little outside of it on the western sides. That’s where I’m mainly at and WiMax doesn’t really go out there and 3G is there but only about .5Mbps or about 60 KBps (Or Tmo’s 2G). However you see it.

    If I can see good reviews about LTE in Houston, then I’ll stay on Sprint on this family plan.

  21. Look like the tmo version will also be absent of branding; http://www.technobuffalo.com/videos/t-mobile-htc-one-hands-on/

  22. Yes. Carrier branding bothers me. It really bothers me. Carriers are simply supposed to be a dumb pipeline. That’s it. I pay you for mobile service, you give me mobile service. It should be like home internet service. Does Time Warner brand all my computers and mobile devices using their internet service? No and no should any us carrier.

    It makes no sense. Especially in 2013. The galaxy S3 for example is sold EVERYWHERE on god knows how many carriers. I see someone with a Verizon S3 and someone with a Sprint S3. What’s my incentive to go to either carriers? They both have the SAME phone so what’s the reason for the branding? I can’t SEE their LTE speeds and coverage simply by noticing their logo on a phone. So then why even slap your company name on it when everyone has the same phone?

    Dumb pipe. Just give us the content/mobile service and we’ll pay the money. That’s as far as our relationship goes. US carriers shouldn’t have any influence in how a manufacture designs a phone.

  23. Yeah that’s great and all but Sprint will still put all of it’s ugly bloatware all over it like they do with everything else, save for their one nexus device.

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