HTC's chief financial officer, Hui-ming Cheng, has confirmed that the company is on track to launch Android-based handsets before the end of 2008.

Cheng has been quoted as saying the first Android phones from HTC are due to ship to "ODM" (original design manufacturer) clients in the fourth quarter of this year.

Android, Google's open source mobile phone platform, was announced back in November 2007 but no hardware has yet launched, leading to rumours of delays.

Which ODM client/s is obviously the interesting question. HTC currently creates own-label branded handsets for T-Mobile - who is a member of the Open Handset Alliance, with seperate confirmation from T-Mobile will launch an Android handset by the end of the year suggesting this is what could launch soon.

It's predicted that HTC will beat other manufacturers to market with an Android phone, as the company were given a several month headstart with access to the OS thanks to their role as the manufacturer of the HTC "Dream" Android prototype.