HTC has added new firmware for the Android-based HTC Hero smartphone to its UK site, following similar launches across the rest of Europe. The 2.73.405.5 ROM should pump up the speed of the handset, as well as adding touch-to-focus functionality to the camera.

It takes about 10 minutes to install, but be sure to backup all the data on your phone before you start because the update will wipe everything clean. Slightly irritatingly for some, you need a Windows PC to install the ROM - Linux and Macs are a no-go.

To get 2.73.405.5, head over to HTC's support site (linked below), install HTC Sync on your PC if you haven't already, connect the handset via USB, then launch the ROM update application which is downloadable from HTC's site.

Let us know in the comments whether the speed increase on the handset is noticeable or whether you can't tell much difference - we'd be interested to hear.