Following our post about HTC releasing its ROM update to UK HTC Hero owners, we were inundated with a hail of comments saying that the software update - which promises considerably improved performance and touch-to-focus functionality for the camera - wasn't available for Orange and T-Mobile branded versions of the HTC Hero.

So we did a bit of investigation, and got in touch with all three companies to find out what on earth is going on. It turns out that the reports are correct - HTC told us that the ROM update is for HTC customers only, and that Orange and T-Mo have their own schedule for releasing the software to their customers.

T-Mobile then told us: "The update is currently being tested and will be issued to customers when it is ready. There is no indication of a time frame for this as yet, but we will let you know as soon as we have any more information". The chaps over at T3 also discovered that T-Mobile's support forum is "going bezerk" with more than 30 pages of customers complaining that the update isn't available.

No word from Orange as yet, but the company's PR team has told us that it's looking into it. We'll continue to hassle the companies to try and find out when the upgrade will be available for owners of branded phones, and the moment we hear anything, you'll be the first to know.

In the meantime, there's always the slightly iffy option of rooting your Android device - the equivalent of iPhone jailbreaking - and then manually installing the ROM. We wouldn't recommend that, though, unless you're very confident in what you're doing, and don't mind voiding your warranty.