To keep you guys updated on the target release dates for the HTC Hero: The Hero is supposed to hit European shores with T-Mobile and Orange sometime in July. Asia will enjoy the Hero later in the summer. And yes, our lovely continent North America will lag behind once again with an even-later-than-Asia 2009 target date. Sigh. Why does Android always come last for us?

Also, Engadget reports that the HTC Hero won't be a 'Google Experience' phone which may or may not be a good thing. The good thing is that HTC gets to do really cool stuff with the UI and isn't forced into including Google applications, the bad thing is well, there is no bad thing anymore! (check updates) that it doesn't look like Android Market will pop up on the Hero anytime soon. You can still get your third party applications, just not OTA. That's obviously a downer and we're not sure if that's a trade off worth taking

What do you guys think?

UPDATE: one of our keen readers pointed out that Android Market seems to be available on the demo HTC Hero units. Take a look at the picture after the jump. Hopefully, Android Market stays on the Hero after the public release or Google plays nice and allows Android Market on non-Google Experience phones. Android Market is just too big a feature to miss out on!

UPDATE 2: False alarm guys, sorry. Android Market is all systems go on the HTC Hero. The only minor issue is not being able to get OTA firmware updates. Which after judging T-Mobile's handling of the Cupcake release, may actually be a good thing.

Thanks for letting us know Ricky!

photo courtesy of slashgear