Android users might find themselves benefiting from an unintended consequence of Apple's recent patent battle against Samsung.
On the surface, it sounds as if Google and its partners will want to get Android 4.1 deployed to as many devices as possible. It sounds simple: update Android, avoid litigation. On the contrary, it isn't quite clear what action would circumvent the patent. We'll have to wait for the situation to shake out, but it could be just a tiny change here or a small tweak there.
Rather than completely update the smartphone with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, HTC was able to work around the problems with new "app associations" settings screen for setting defaults for things like e-mail and maps. It didn't take that long for HTC and its carrier partners to get things back on track, essentially wrapping up within a few weeks.
Assuming all Android 2.x devices are infringing on Apple's territory, we could soon see a slew of Android updates that are either ahead of schedule or were never intended for the older handsets. Whether in the form of a minor tweak or a full-on Jelly Bean upgrade, Android users might want to keep an eye on their notification bars.