After some of its smartphones have been slapped with an import ban, which effectively quashed the dreams of many Sprint customers to have their HTC EVO 4G LTE on the original May 18 launch date, HTC announced today that the two held up devices, HTC EVO 4G LTE and HTC One X, have received clearance to enter US soil. Normal shipments for the two models can finally resume.
According to the company’s official statement, they have “completed the review process with US Customs and HTC devices have been released, as they are in compliance with the ITC’s ruling. Future shipments should continue to enter the US and we are confident that we will soon be able to meet the demand for our products.”
It seems HTC was forced to remove the feature on the two phones that were deemed to violate Apple’s patents on data detection, a feature that automatically recognizes data like phone numbers, address and email address, and prompts users to move them to other applications, such as a dialer or calendar. However, it’s still not clear when this removal happened, because we learned a while ago that the banned units didn’t have the offending features, which didn’t stop the US Customs from holding them for review.
Now that the full review process is completed, it’s good news for Sprint and retailers like Best Buy who don’t seem to carry enough stock of the HTC EVO 4G LTE to deliver to all pre-order customers. We can probably expect the supply problems to be solved in a day or two. With the legal troubles behind HTC, at least for the time being, we should be hearing from Sprint this week on when it’s planning to release the HTC EVO 4G LTE nationally.