There has been plenty of chatter about Google Edition smartphones lately. The rumors began before Google I/O, however they were confirmed when the GALAXY S 4 Google Edition was officially announced. Since that point we have also seen an announcement for the HTC One Google Edition as well as rumors dealing with others such as Motorola, Sony and OPPO.
The good news as of today though, the GALAXY S 4 and HTC One Google Edition phones will be arriving in the Play Store today (June 26th). The GALAXY S 4 will arrive priced at $649 and the HTC One will arrive priced at $599. Both devices will be running a stock Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean installation and perhaps more important -- both will follow an update pattern that is similar to what we see with Nexus devices.
Basically, this means both the GALAXY S 4 and HTC One will receive regular updates that are not slowed by the manufacturer or carriers. Or in other words, these Google Edition handsets will updates will follow shortly after they are announced by Google. These Google Edition handsets will also be contract-free, which just goes to touch on why the prices may seem so high as compared to the regular carrier versions.
Both devices available as we speak from the Play Store are stock Android 4.2.2 as mentioned above, but they do have a few little tweaks from what we're hearing. An updated camera app is on board, and the HTC One still has Beats Audio, apparently. Then of course they are LTE compatible, and will work with both AT&T and T-Mobile 4G LTE here in the US.
Today Google has finally made both available from the Play Store, as expected, but they aren't getting any special coverage on the front page of the store just yet. According to Google these won't start shipping until July 9th. The wait is almost over guys! Get em from the links below.