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htc m8

Why is nobody talking about the game-changing HTC One (E8)?

When rumors of a possible plastic-made, low-cost but otherwise top-shelf HTC One M8 counterpart first cropped up, most of us laughed. No way could HTC afford shrinking their profit margins so drastically, we thought to ourselves.

HTC One E8

After all, build materials, no matter how “premium” or shoddy, make up merely a tiny piece of a smartphone’s overall bill of materials. Not to mention the BOM doesn’t account for the actual manufacturing costs and marketing, with the two sometimes doubling a gizmo’s base valuation.

Bottom line, it was really, really, reheheheally difficult to buy that HTC would just replace aluminum with plastic and cut M8’s retail price in half. It sounded way too good to be true, and more often than not, that makes a story, well, not true.

When fantasy meets reality

Yet one quiet, peaceful morning a couple of weeks back, the OEM’s Chinese arm dropped the bombshell. The One E8, aka M8 Ace, aka M8 Vogue Edition broke cover with surprisingly little fanfare. But rumor was we were looking at a China-only handheld, so even if HTC wanted to make a fuss about the launch, no one would listen. Well, except for folks over in the Middle Kingdom. Hope you know how lucky you are.

HTC_One_E8

The story’s twists however didn’t end there, so a second, slightly noisier announcement came, telling us to expect the E8 “globally” in “select markets” starting early June. Um, what? In “select global markets”? Isn’t that kind of a contradiction?

No matter, the important thing is this budget-conscious flagship is headed for certain non-Asian markets. Some European countries probably, and maybe even America. And what do you know, the pricing speculation was spot-on, as the MSRP over in China is around the equivalent of $450.

Meanwhile, the all-aluminum M8 costs roughly $850. So HTC basically did the impossible, lived up to a fantasy we never thought would become reality, and yet no one’s talking about the One E8. Not really.

HTC-One-E8-vs-HTC-One-M8

Sure, if you dig deep enough, you’ll find the occasional hands-on preview here and there. And pretty much everyone covered the breaking news about the international release last week. But where are the glitzy, expensive, high-concept promos and teasers? The hype-building opinion pieces? Yo tech bloggers, you’re always looking for the “next big thing”, so why not admit this could be it and let the entire world know?

Well, let’s take the matters of contention one by one.

HTC One E8 – a trailblazer like no other

First off, is the E8 truly a game-changing device? I mean, when it comes down to it, the 5 incher looks exactly like the original One M8, and the first-gen One before it, only chintzier. There’s no “hook” in its spec sheet, no unique software features, no hardware innovations. In a way, it feels right to ignore it.

htc-one-e8-back

But let me ask you a question. How do you define mobile innovation in 2014? That’s a toughie, eh? And don’t even think about answering with fingerprint recognition or heart rate monitor BS. Nope, “true” octa-core chips, 64-bit architecture and 4 GB RAM aren’t satisfactory answers either.

Battery life breakthroughs? Now you’re talking, but I’m afraid everyone from Samsung to Apple is stuck in that particular department. Flexible displays? I’m with you there too, but we’re still a few good years away from real advancements.

htc-one-e8

Which brings us to affordability. Bang for buck, if you will. Sure, it’s nowhere near as spectacular as what most of you have in mind when thinking “innovation”. But look around you. It’s all about saving a buck nowadays, and getting as much as possible for your expense.

And the E8 offers basically everything the Samsung Galaxy S5 does… at a fraction of the price. It’s that simple.

Boot Iron Man, stop living in the past, step it up, HTC

Look, I don’t mean to be melodramatic, but we’re living in an unfair world. A world that money makes it go round maybe more than ever. And where money brings more money, and more, and more. They say you have to spend to make, and HTC doesn’t have but a tiny fragment of Samsung or Apple’s dough to invest in marketing and advertising.

Iron Man

And the thing is marketing tends to be particularly scanty when there’s peanuts to make off selling a product like the E8. So you can understand why HTC is reluctant to aggressively promote the polycarbonate powerhouse.

Then again, at this point, gambles and long-term investments with high risks are the only chances HTC’s got to survive. Screw Tony Stark and Commissioner Gordon, no one’s going to buy a phone just because they say so.

htc-quietly-quiet

Instead, make your voice heard, HTC, and make it clear Samsung, Apple, LG, Sony, none of them have a high-end gizmo as spectacularly cheap as this thing. Buy TV publicity space, put up billboards, product placement, whatever it takes. Just don’t let the E8 go unnoticed, no matter the short-term financial losses. You’ll win ten times as much in the long haul if you pull it off.

What about the media?

Without pointing any fingers, I must say I’m terribly disappointed about One E8’s media reception so far. Granted, HTC isn’t helping its own cause, but isn’t it our duty as bloggers, journalists, “influencers”, whatever to send people on the right path?

htc-one-e8-hands-on

How long have we been complaining that high-end gadget prices are too damn high? Well, this is our chance to change all that, and instead of uniting to support HTC’s initiative, we give it the cold shoulder. Why? Because some of us have personal beef with the mobile phone maker, while others are hardcore Samsung enthusiasts. There, I said it.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I think there’s an avalanche of hateful comments to come, so I should probably enjoy my final moments of peace and quiet. By maybe replaying Engadget’s hands-on HTC One E8 preview. Who knows, maybe others will follow their suit after all and build the buzz the affordable 5 incher deserves.   

LG G3 vs HTC One M8 vs Samsung Galaxy S5 – Specs comparison

Samsung took the wraps off its “next big thing” in February, HTC evened the score a month later by showcasing and then releasing the One M8, and Sony… well, Sony tried to keep up with the big fishes, but ultimately drowned in a sea of manufacturing woes and distribution hostility.

LG G3 vs One M8 vs Galaxy S5

Meanwhile, LG kept an unusually low profile given the sudden boost of popularity earned after Nexus 5 and G2’s launches, observed and waited for the perfect opportunity to enter the high-end mobile arena with another heavyweight contender.

Did their patience and care for detail pay off? Is the LG G3 too late to the H1 2014 top-notch smartphone party? Was your patience a smart call or would you have been better served boarding the One M8 or Galaxy S5 bandwagons early? Let’s see:

LG G3 vs HTC One M8 vs Samsung Galaxy S5 – design and build quality comparison

I know what you’re thinking. Aluminum trumps plastic and fake metal (read also plastic) any day of the week, so why are we even having this discussion? Well, because maybe it’s not so simple. As it happens, G3’s back cover has a thin layer of robust alloy under the chintzy polycarbonate to make it stronger, more durable and, perhaps, handsomer.

LG G3 vs One M8

Admit it, the G3 is one handsome son of a gun. Incredibly compact too. Although it incorporates extra usable screen real estate compared to both its rivals (5.5 inches vs 5.0 and 5.1), it’s a measly 4 mm taller than the GS5 and, get this, just as tall as the M8. Also, thinner (8.9 vs 9.4 mm). The S5 is even slimmer, at 8.1 mm, but Samsung has no excuses for its all-plastic exterior and no redeeming build qualities.

Sure, the GS5 is the only of the three to resist contact against water, but strictly from an aesthetical standpoint, the G3 and One M8 are neck and neck way ahead of Samsung’s spearhead.

Display face-off

Right, here’s where things get tricky. On paper, the M8 and S5 have nothing on the G3 in terms of screen resolution. 1,920 x 1,080 pixels may have been state-of-the-art a year ago, but now’s the time of Quad HD (2,560 x 1,440).

LG G3 Galaxy S5 One M8

The tricky part is determining if Quad HD actually makes a difference. A palpable, perceptible, real difference. Personally, I’m not convinced it does. But at the end of the day, at least LG freed up some space with uber-slim bezels and rear physical buttons and made the panel larger without impacting on the overall footprint. So you see, the G3 wins no matter how you spin the Full HD vs 2K debate.

Processing speed, RAM and cameras

LG execs were surprisingly straightforward vis-à-vis their rationale to go plastic, not metal (it’s all about the moneys), and they’ll no doubt advocate the Quad HD cause for as long as it takes. But why choose Snapdragon 801 when 805 is also available? That, they’ll have a hard time explaining and defending.

LG G3

I mean, sure, the 2.5 GHz quad-core SoC is enough to tie the S5 in raw power and slightly trump the M8. And boosted by 3 GB RAM, it should deliver superior overall performance to both. But only by a whisker. Besides, the 2 GB RAM config, which we’re hearing might see daylight on certain US networks, is theoretically S5’s match. Just its match.

Camera-wise, the G3, like the One M8, comes with an innovative, never-before-seen add-on. Laser auto focus. Sounds neat and all, but we’re afraid it may be a worthless gimmick in the end, not unlike the “Duo Camera” setup.

lg-g3-laser-autofocus

Oh, well, at least the actual shooter packs 13 megapixels, not four, plus upgraded optical image stabilization. So it clearly thrashes the M8’s Ultrapixel “powerhouse”, but does the OIS system weigh enough to make up for the 3 MP deficit against the S5? Impossible to tell so soon. For the time being, let’s call this a draw.

As for you selfie addicts, it’s no debate. The M8 has the best front-facing cam, a 5 MP unit, whereas the G3 and GS5 keep things fairly modest, courtesy of 2 MP duckface snappers.

Software and battery life

With pre-loaded KitKat across the board, the software battle comes down to UIs and Android skins. It’s TouchWiz vs Sense vs whatever LG calls its user interface nowadays. Is it still Optimus? No matter, the important thing is it’s flatter, simpler and less intrusive than ever before.

LG G3-2

All while bringing a couple of valuable goodies to the table. Like Smart Notice and Smart Security. Granted, that’s nothing compared to S5’s bundle of health-oriented apps, security functions, air gestures and Ultra Power Saving Mode. But it’s a step in the right direction.

Speaking of power and batteries, that particular duel is wide open, with G3’s juicer tipping the scales at 3,000 mAh, 200 mAh north of S5’s cell and 400 of M8’s ticker. Remember, both Samsung and HTC went the extra mile to optimize autonomy, especially during the final stage of discharge, while G3’s battery needs to handle loads of extra pixels. Bottom line, the three are neck and neck here too. Or so they seem.

Audio, sensors, storage and pricing

Look, G3’s Dolby mobile sound enhancement system, with a 1 Watt speaker, is cool and all, but M8’s BoomSound audio is hands down the best solution of its kind in today’s mobile landscape. As far as sensors go, LG kept things as simple as possible, giving the cold shoulder to S5’s built-in fingerprint scanner and heart rate monitor.

HTC M8 BoomSound

Then there’s the storage bout, where I’m glad to see all three contenders offer 16 and 32 gig options with expansion capabilities via microSD. Finally, some on-contract G3 price tags remain up in the air, though it’s obvious the cost gap between the 5.5-inch giant and its adversaries will be nonexistent.

So I guess it’s time for conclusions. Answers. Let’s start from the beginning. Was LG wise to put off the introduction? Nope, sorry, I don’t see it. Is the G3 overall better than the M8 and GS5? Barely. It’s phenomenally compact, slim and sleek, punchy as hell, the display is a beaut and so is the camera, but it lacks a certain je ne sais quoi. A wow element. Something to make us not want to wait for Samsung’s Galaxy S5 Prime.

HTC executive clarifies what’s underneath the “empty space” on the HTC M8

HTC One M8

The HTC One M8 has been a very popular smartphone so far, judging by the vast media coverage and the contrasting reviews of the handset that we’ve seen so far. However, there has been one common criticism of the handset which has been voiced by all. People have long wondered as to what’s hiding beneath that empty space on the front of the smartphone surrounding the HTC logo right under the display. HTC executive Jeff Gordon has now clarified that this contains several antennae and sensors required for the smartphone, so it’s not empty space by any means.

In the 2013 HTC One, this space also had the capacitive navigation buttons. But since the HTC One M8 uses onscreen navigation buttons, one would feel that all that space is merely consumed by the HTC logo. It’s good to see some clarification coming directly from HTC regarding the issue, but it still doesn’t explain why that place couldn’t have been consumed by the rest of the chassis rather than leaving a big empty bar on the front.

Source: Twitter

Via: Cult of Android

The HTC One M8 does a factory reset if the password is entered wrong 10 times

HTC One M8 Security

According to a new revelation, the new HTC One M8 reportedly has a security feature in place which will perform a factory data reset of the device if a user gets the password or unlock pattern wrong more than ten times. This feature will be beneficial in cases of theft, but could lead to potential abuse as well.

In many cases we see kids or friends handling phones and trying to crack the password too many times. Should such an incident happen with the HTC One M8, all user data including applications, images, music will be completely wiped and the users will have to start anew with their smartphone.

As of now, there’s no known way to disable this feature, which is particularly fearsome for users of the smartphone. We hope HTC is listening to these reports and decides to bring a fix soon.

Seems like HTC got this feature completely wrong. What’s your take on this new revelation?

Source: Phandroid

HTC One (M8) vs Samsung Galaxy S5 – Specs Comparison

It’s weird, we expected both HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4’s sequels to knock our socks off, enthrall and amaze with major upgrades like Quad HD display resolutions, bonkers 4 GB RAM modules, OIS cameras and significantly boosted Snapdragon 805 processors, but at the end of the day the One (M8) and Galaxy S5… just didn’t.

HTC-One-M8-vs-Samsung-Galaxy-S5

In a sense, you can say the two evolved at essentially the same pace, proving once again the mobile market as a whole is oversaturated and in dire need of an upgrade cycle relaxation.

There’s really no point in everyone bringing to light two, let alone three new so-called flagship devices each year, as long as the S5 is literally and figuratively a lightweight Note 3, and the M8 barely edges out the 12-month-old M7.

htc-one-vs-galaxy-s5

However, if you choose to disregard the fact they’re genuinely not a big deal, or simply the timing is right for a change (as in, you still rock an OG Galaxy S3 or something), here’s how the HTC One (M8) and Samsung Galaxy S5 match up in a direct, winner-takes-all specs battle:

Design and build quality comparison

Look, I appreciate HTC and Samsung’s desire to keep things fresh, but a change of tune is not always good. And sometimes, it’s completely unnecessary. Take the Ones. Was the first-gen a beaut? You bet. Was there still room for better? Always.

htc-one-m8

Did HTC do that? We can argue and bicker all day, yet in the end we’ll reach the same conclusion: the M8 is a bigger “Metalhead” than its predecessor, but it’s not as beautiful. It’s likely more durable, but somehow also cheaper-looking.

The Galaxy S5? For the record, I have no beef with plastic per se. It’s just that Samsung may want to try something different one of these days. As in, truly different, not add stripped patterns to a glossy, chintzy rear cover and call it aesthetical innovation.

Samsung-Galaxy-S5

Back to our duel, the M8 clearly wins in robustness and elegance, but loses the numbers race, as it’s chunkier, thicker, taller and heavier. Slightly narrower as well, though it’s too little too late.

Verdict: It’s a tie

HTC One (M8) vs Samsung Galaxy S5 – display face-off

Unlike in the design section, neither HTC, nor Samsung took any sort of gamble with their screens. They walked the beaten path, with a 5-inch Super LCD3 unit and 5.1-inch Super AMOLED respectively. Both carrying Full HD, aka 1,920 x 1,080 pixels resolution. And virtually identical ppis: 441 and 432.

HTC One M8 display

Does this mean the resolution war is over? Not so fast. It probably just means Quad HD was too risky and superfluous… at the moment. As for which of the two Full HD panels at hand is better, the answer is none. They’re really equally as gorgeous. Ask around, everyone will tell you the same.

Verdict: Another tie

Processing speed, RAM and cameras

“Play it safe” seems to have been the motto of the entire manufacturing process behind the S5 and M8, from display resolution to RAM, cameras, software and battery. Processors? Guess Snapdragon 801 was a safe bet as well, though it was also the smart, sensible choice all along.

htc-one-m8-vs-galaxy-s5

Check that, there was almost no choice. Sure, the S5 packs the 2.5 GHz clock monster as standard, whereas the M8 only offers the beast in Asia, “settling” for a 2.3 GHz model everywhere else. But congratulations, if you can tell the difference between a phone with a 2.5 GHz S801 inside and one powered by a 2.3 GHz, you’re delusional.

RAM? Let’s not even go there. The fact of the matter is our two contenders are deadlocked from that standpoint, with 2 gigs each, which is all you need at the moment for smooth multitasking.

htc-one-m8-camera

The camera clash is a rather complex and delicate affair, albeit when it comes right down to it, it’s simple. Care more about photos taken with rear-facing snappers on phones than selfies? Pick the S5. In love with your own reflection and duckface? It’s the M8 for you.

Want all the numbers? Here they are – 16 MP primary camera with autofocus, LED flash, Dual Shot, HDR and 4K video recording and modest 2 MP secondary unit on the GS5, dual rear cameras with 4 UltraPixel and 2 MP sensors, as well as 5 MP front shooter with HDR for the One (M8).

Winner: Galaxy S5 by a whisker

Software and battery

Here’s where things get truly interesting. And complicated. Despite running the same Android version (4.4 KitKat) underneath all the tweaks and skins, the S5 and M8 are anything but two peas in a pod software-wise.

HTC BlinkFeed

Now, TouchWiz and Sense used to be universally hated until not long ago, shifting their fortunes of late with neat little add-ons and functions like Air gestures, S Health, S-Voice, BlinkFeed and Zoe. They still need work here and there, but they’re definitely on the rise.

Which one’s better, you ask? It depends. Samsung’s TouchWiz is a wee bit more intrusive, yet also smoother and packed with the most unique, useful special features. Sense 6 is in many ways a more cohesive experience, it’s subtler, plus right now, the M8 is the only one of these two handhelds to be offered in an optional Google Play edition, with “pure” KitKat on board.

Galaxy S5 battery

Battery? Oh, I wouldn’t be caught dead calling that bout yet. On paper, the S5 has the upper hand, with the slightly larger juicer (2,800 vs 2,600 mAh), and the “ultra power saving” mode. But have you seen M8’s early astounding battery test results? Mind equals blown.

Verdict: Another tie

Audio, sensors, storage and others

The “others” part of our comparison, once trivial and unimportant, may well tip the balance in this particular case, both because the overall duel is so evenly matched and on account of “other” features becoming key selling points.

HTC M8 music

Let’s see, HTC has BoomSound and not much else, while Samsung retaliates with water and dust protection, fingerprint recognition technology and a built-in heart rate monitor. The storage options are essentially the same across the board (16, 32 GB built-in, up to 128 external), pricing is tied, and so is connectivity, with Wi-Fi, 4G LTE, NFC and Bluetooth 4.0 everywhere.

Soooo, it comes down to whether you reckon fingerprint and heart rate sensors are gimmicks or not. And if you’d rather listen to bitching music on your smartphone, or be able to take it for a swim. It’s a toughie, eh?

Galaxy S5 fingerprint

Whichever you pick as the ultimate winner though, don’t forget to pit it against Sony’s Xperia Z2 as well before making a purchase. And remember, a host of Android top dogs might be yet to come.

Buy One HTC One (M8) Get Another One Free At Verizon

htc-one-m8-press-pic

 

Wow Verizon. Not only is the new HTC One (M8) exclusively in Verizon stores until April 9th, but they’re already offering a great deal on the device. If you buy an HTC One (M8) on a two year contract and someone else signs a contract, then they get their phone for free.

If you’re on the family share plan and have two people who are eligible for upgrades then you should definitely take advantage of this deal. It actually started yesterday when the phone became available. There’s no specific expiration date, but this is a limited time offer. Does this offer compel you to buy this phone?

Source: Verizon via Droid Life

Asian variant of the HTC One M8 revealed to sport a slightly overclocked processor

HTC M8 Asia benchmarks

HTC One M8

A new leak has revealed that the Snapdragon 801 chipset on the new HTC One is slightly overclocked for the Asian variant. While the standard American and European variant of the HTC One (M8) features a 2.3 GHz quad core processor, the one on the Asian variant is revealed to be packing a 2.5 GHz chip.

What this means is that Asian models of the new HTC One will trump its European and American counterparts in terms of benchmarks. However, real world performance will remain pretty much the same. A comparison has revealed that the U.S. variant scored 29,431 on AnTuTu while the Asian model scored 35,964 which is a significant bump.

It’s clear that HTC has added a little bonus for its Asian customers considering that a bulk of its sales come from the continent. However, even within Asia, this particular variant might only be available in a few regions.

The new HTC One is a stellar device with plenty of positive reviews already. Now it’s up to HTC to tackle the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S5 and the Sony Xperia Z2 when these devices launch on a global scale in mid-April. Stateside, the HTC One is already available for purchase through AT&T, Verizon and Sprint.

HTC M8 Asia benchmarks

Source: ePrice – Translated

Via: Phone Arena

HTC One (M8) vs HTC One – Specs Comparison

When Samsung unveiled the somewhat underwhelming Galaxy S5, HTC brashly suggested buyer’s remorse will be coming soon to early adopters of the “next big thing”. They also promised competition will be “one-upped” by the sequel to the outstanding if not underrated 2013 HTC One, raising the bar of expectations way beyond the company’s real potential.

HTC-One-M8-vs-HTC-One-M7

Making matters worse, the “All New HTC One” quickly became the unwanted star of possibly the loftiest leak fest in Android history. I realize you’ve probably heard this before, but the phone was truly the worst kept secret of all time.

The rumor bonanza baffled HTC to the extent they actually ran out of branding ideas, ultimately leaving it to their distribution partners to choose a moniker. Any moniker. As such, the 5 incher is called The all new HTC One (M8) by Verizon, the HTC One – M8 by Sprint, and HTC One (M8) at AT&T. That’s beyond confusing.

HTC M8 vs HTC One

And it’s not even HTC’s biggest anxiety. I mean, sure, it’s bad that prospective buyers will have a hard time figuring out which model is newer based on names, but it’s much worse that the regular folk, you know, the non-geeks, may not be able to tell the difference when looking or handling the two either.

Sounds like a major identity crisis, so what we’ll try to do in the following lines is untangle the puzzle of the upgrade. Did HTC actually enhance anything? Is the HTC One (M8) better than the HTC One (M7)? How and, most importantly, is it good enough? Let’s see:

HTC One 2014 vs HTC One 2013 – design comparison

First things first, my head is starting to hurt from all the pseudonym shifts, so let’s agree to settle on one set of aliases. How about… the M8 and M7? Good? Good, so now all we have to do is find the upgrades.

HTC-One-M8-vs-One-back

Well, strictly from an aesthetic standpoint, the M8 and M7 are clearly not alike. But is the former actually better designed? Hardly. It’s marginally taller, wider and heavier, plus it’s not exactly compact, accommodating a set of rather broad bezels.

The build quality is stunning on the M8, with roughly 90 percent of the chassis made of robust, handsome aluminum (compared to 70 percent on the M7), yet the handheld all in all is pretty slippery and still prone to little scratches.

htc-one-m8-colors

And then there’s the rounded corner aspect, which at the end of the day is a personal taste affair. I for one loved, loved, loved HTC M7’s rectangular vibe and, while I don’t hate M8’s “curves”, I feel they cheapen the exceptional build.

HTC M8 vs HTC M7 – display face-off

Instead of again offering my own subjective view on things and likely piss you off, I’ll ask you a very important question. It’s a biggie, so think it through. Do you believe bigger is better? If yes, then M8’s display is better. If no, then it’s not. Simple as that.

htc-one-m8

For the record, M8’s screen is a 5-inch Super LCD3 unit with 1,920 x 1,080 pixels resolution, whereas M7’s is virtually identical, just smaller, at 4.7 inches. Resulting ppi? 441 and 469 respectively. Sure, there’s a gap there, but it’s barely noticeable in real life.

Processing speed, RAM and cameras

Phew, I was beginning to fear HTC truly did nothing to alter the 2013 One, aside from fixing what wasn’t broken – the design. But they did swap the 1.7 GHz Snapdragon 600 chip with a 2.3 GHz (2.5 in Asia) Snapdragon 801.

The performance bump isn’t drastic, yet it’s perceptible, and to be fair, there was nowhere higher to go. The Snapdragon 805 CPUs aren’t out, Nvidia’s latest Tegras are unworthy, and MediaTek still has a few things to learn before being invited in the big leagues.

HTC One M8

Congrats to HTC for making the logical choice processor-wise, but what happened in the RAM department? Well, nothing. The M7 packs 2 GB of memory, the M8 likewise, and meanwhile, the six month-old Galaxy Note 3 carries 3 gigs. Face, meet palm.

But wait, there’s more. Embarrassment, that is. M7’s disappointing rear-facing 4 MP UltraPixel shooter is somehow alive, standing and rebooted for the M8. Why? Because… HTC is masochistic like that? Don’t know, I’m just spitballing here.

HTC-M8-camera

The fact of the matter is M8’s primary camera is every bit as mediocre as M7’s. Maybe worse, as it ditches optical image stabilization. And the much hyped Duo Camera is nothing but a useless gimmick. Yeah, yeah, yeah, it improves autofocus time, depth perception and post-processing effects, but does nothing for actual snapshot quality.

On the bright side, selfies. Vibrant, crystal clear, smooth selfies taken with a 5 MP front cam. Ugh!

Software and battery life

HTC’s Sense UI has traditionally had an overwhelming number of detractors and very few admirers. Only the balance is beginning to tip in Sense’s favor.

HTC BlinkFeed

Not as intrusive as back in the day, the user interface, complemented by an increasingly convenient BlinkFeed, brings much more benefits to the table than downsides for a change, which made HTC feel assured enough to already unveil a Google Play Edition with “vanilla” Android 4.4 KitKat.    

That’s double points for the M8 in its fratricide duel with the M7, and, believe it or not, the 5 incher puts another one in the win column thanks to battery life. Be honest, you didn’t really welcome the news of the 2014 One featuring a 2,600 mAh battery, did you?

HTC M8 battery test

That’s a measly 300 mAh north of M7’s juicer capacity, and, considering the size and processor boost, you undoubtedly expected similar autonomy numbers. However, two extremely reliable battery tests put the M8 significantly ahead of its predecessor, with results that exceed even those of the LG G2 or Galaxy Note 3. Wow!

Audio, connectivity, storage and pricing

Look at that, HTC somehow managed to make the outstanding BoomSound speakers better. Richer, louder, clearer and, possibly, the all-around best sound system in the mobile business. Oh, and remember how you weren’t able to carry around all your photos, videos and whatnot due to the M7 not supporting storage expansion? That’s no longer the case, and you can stick a 128 GB microSD card inside the M8.

True, the HTC One now starts at an inferior 16 GB of built-in storage, but hey, don’t you prefer to be able to expand that to 144 rather than be forced to settle for 32? I know I do.

HTC One M8 music

The connectivity and sensors area offers no big surprise or shocker, with everything from 4G LTE to NFC present, but no swanky fingerprint recognition or heart rate monitor technology.

Pricing-wise, the M8 is around the ballpark we anticipated, namely $200 with 24-month pacts, $650 outright, and $700 contract-free in a Google Play edition. That’s no bargain, but it ain’t a rip-off either. And it’s mostly on par with M7’s initial costs.

HTC-One-M8-Google-Play-edition

Wrapping up, I’ll hold back from handing down a verdict and instead pass the mic to you. Is the HTC One (M8) significantly better than the One (M7), considering it’s got a punchier CPU, beefier battery, larger display, more gifted front camera, smoother software and extra microSD slot, but a so-so design, inferior ppi, mediocre rear shooter, and just adequate RAM?

Google Play Edition HTC One Officially Launches For $700

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The New HTC One was just unveiled this morning in London and New York City. Naturally, some people would want this device to come with Stock Android and no Sense overlays. Well just like last year, HTC is making that phone.

Of course, you get the latest version of Android 4.4.2 KitKat powering your phone, along with all of Google’s services like Gmail and the Play Store. This phone supports these network bands:

  • GSM/GPRS/EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900
  • WCDMA: 850/AWS/1900/2100 with HSPA+ up to 21Mbps​
  • LTE: 700/850/AWS/1900 (B17/B5//B4/B2, carrier aggregation B4+17;B2+17), + Roaming 2600/1800 (B7/B3)

Unfortunately, it comes with a rather high price tag of $700. Since it’s a Google Play Edition device, it won’t be subsidized by any carriers. This is a step up from last year’s $600, but considering all the improvements you’ll be getting with the new phone, it’s worth that price. As with all the other Google Play Edition devices, it will be US only. Sorry international readers.

The Glacial Silver is also the only color this phone will come in, so if you wanted the Amber Gold or the Gunmetal colors, you’re out of luck. But you could purchase the standard model off-contract and eventually flash the Google Play Edition ROM to it, so it’s not a total loss. So are you interested in a Google Play Edition variant of the new HTC One?

Google Play Store: HTC One (2014)

The New HTC One (M8) Finally Launches

htc-one-2014-colors

 

After months of rumors and tons of leaks, the new HTC One (the M8) is finally here. And for some countries and carriers, it’s available right now.

We’ve known all the specs for quite awhile, but now they’re finally official. Here is a breakdown of all the specs:

  • Dimensions
    • 146.36 x 70.6 x 9.35 mm
  • Weight
    • 160g
  • Colors
    • Gunmetal Gray, Glacial Silver, Amber Gold
  • Display
    • 5.0 inch, Full HD 1080p Corning® Gorilla® Glass 3
  • CPU
    • Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor
    • 2.5GHz quad-core CPU in Asia/China (MSM8974AC)
    • 2.3GHz quad-core CPU in US/EMEA (MSM8974AB)
  • Platform
    • Android 4.4 with HTC Sense 6, HTC BlinkFeed
  • SIM Card Type
    • nanoSIM
  • Memory Total storage
    • 16GB/32GB, available capacity varies
  • Expansion card slot
    • supports microSD memory card for up to 128GB additional storage (card not included)
  • RAM
    • 2GB DDR2
  • Network
    • 2G/ 2.5G
      • GSM/GPRS/EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
  • 3G/WCDMA:
  • EMEA
    • 850/900/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA+ up to 42 Mbps
  • Asia
    • 850/900/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA+ up to 42 Mbps
  • AT&T
    • 850/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA+ up to 21 Mbps
  • Sprint
    • 850/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA up to 14.4 Mbps
  • Verizon
    • 850/900/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA+ up to 14.4 Mbps
  • Tmus
    • 850/AWS/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA+ up to 42 Mbps
  • 3G CDMA
    • Sprint & Verizon: 800/1900 MHz
  • 4G LTE
    • EMEA
      • 800/900/1800/2600 MHz
    • Asia
      • 700/900/1800/2100/2600 MHz
    • AT&T
      • 700/850/AWS/1800/1900/2600 MHz
    • Sprint
      • FDD 800/1900 MHz , TDD 2600 MHz
    • Verizon
      • 700/AWS/1800/2600 MHz
    • Tmus
      • 700/AWS MHz
  • Camera Duo
  • Primary camera
    • HTC UltraPixel camera , BSI sensor, pixel size 2.0 um, sensor size 1/3”, ƒ/2.0, 28mm lens. HTC ImageChip 2. 1080p Full HD video recording with HDR video
  • Secondary camera
    • capture depth information
  • Front camera
    • 5MP, ƒ/2.0, BSI sensor, wide angle lens with HDR capability, 1080p Full HD video recording
  • Gallery
    • UFocus, Dimension Plus, Seasons, Foregrounder, Image match
  • Multimedia Audio supported formats:
    • Playback: .aac, .amr, .ogg, .m4a, .mid, .mp3, .wav, .wma (Windows Media Audio 10)
  • Recording: .aac
  • Video supported formats
    • Playback: .3gp, .3g2, .mp4, .wmv (Windows Media Video 10), .avi (MP4 ASP and MP3)
  • Recording: .mp4
  • GPS Internal GPS antenna
    • GLONASS, Digital compass
  • Sensors
    • Gyro sensor, Accelerometer, Proximity sensor, Ambient light sensor, Barometer
  • Connectivity
    • 3.5 mm stereo audio jack, NFC (3), Bluetooth® 4.0 with aptX enabled
    • Wi-Fi: IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (2.4 & 5 GHz) DLNA® for wirelessly streaming media from the phone to a compatible TV or computer, HTC Connect
    • Support consumer infrared remote control
    • Micro-USB 2.0 (5-pin) port with mobile high- definition video link (MHL) for USB or HDMI connection (Special cable required for HDMI connection.)
  • Sound Enhancement
    • Battery Embedded rechargeable Li-polymer battery
    • HTC BoomSound Dual front-facing stereo speakers with built-in amplifiers, HTC Sense Voice
  • Battery
    • Capacity: 2600 mAh
    • Talk time: Up to 20 hours for 3G
    • Standby time: Up to 496 hours for 3G
    • Voltage range/frequency: 100 ~ 240 V AC, 50/60 Hz DC output: 5 V and 1.5 A

There is also a Google Play Edition of the new HTC One coming soon, for $700. That’s a steep price, but for the improved specs, it’s worth it. And if you’re lucky, you can get the standard edition of the phone immediately. Here is the breakdown of availability:

  • Verizon – In Store Starting At 1 PM ET
  • Other North American Carriers – Available Immediately Online, In-Store On April 10th
  • UK – Available Today At Certain Retailers
  • Other European And Asian Markets – Available Within A Few Weeks

So if you are on Verizon, you can walk into a store today and walk out with the new HTC One. If you’re on the other carriers, you could order the phone online today and through rush shipping get the phone delivered to you within the next few days, or even tomorrow.

This phone is very compelling. Will you be picking it up?

Source: HTC

HTC inadvertently confirms the existence of a GPE 2014 HTC One

HTC Gallery App - HTC One

HTC Gallery App - HTC One

The 2014 HTC One is barely hours away from an official announcement and the company has already confirmed the existence of a Google Play Edition variant. The information was given away by the app description of HTC’s new Gallery app on the Play Store, which was launched along with a few other Sense 6.0 specific apps earlier today.

The last line of the app description reads – “Support for HTC One(M8) Google Play Edition is limited to HTC Photo Edit,” thus confirming once and for all that there will be a GPE model of the HTC M8 in the coming months.

GPE variants are basically the same device but without the OEM customization. So you will get the hardware of the HTC One (M8) running on stock Android, much like Nexus devices. The GPE HTC One from last year has seen relative success, so it’s quite obvious that HTC wants to continue providing this alternative to the users.

Pricing and availability details are yet to be shared as this has only been spotted on an app listing, but we should have confirmation within the next few hours. You can check out the app for yourself from the link below.

Source: Google Play Store

Via: Cult of Android

All New HTC One Gets Leaked And Compared To The Original HTC One

htc-m7-and-m8

HTC just can’t seem to get a handle on these leaks. We’re now less than 24 hours to go until HTC’s event in London and the new HTC One going on sale on selected carriers in selected countries, but the leaks won’t stop. Now official reviewers are posting their hands-on with the device.

We know pretty much every single feature and specification by now, but it’s nice to see a direct comparison between the two phones. Here the spec differences:

HTC One (2013)

  • 1.7 GHz Snapdragon 600
  • 2 GB RAM
  • Android KitKat 4.4.2
  • HTC Sense 5
  • Adreno 320 GPU
  • 2300 mAh battery
  • NFC and LTE

All New HTC One (2014)

  • 2.3 GHz Snapdragon 801
  • 2 GB RAM
  • Android KitKat 4.4.2
  • HTC Sense 5
  • Adreno 330 GPU
  • 2600 mAh battery
  • NFC and LTE

Some of these upgrades are very big, such as the battery and the chipset. But come tomorrow, if you’re on the right carrier in the right country, will you be buying this phone?

Source: TechSmartt via Joel Barron

The New HTC One Will Be Launching Exclusively On Verizon on March 25th

Verizon HTC One

Verizon HTC One

Well this sucks. In a lot of ways. Not only is the new Gold HTC One going to be a Best Buy exclusive, only Verizon will be carrying it on March 25th. This means that customers of AT&T, Sprint, or T-Mobile who want the device mere hours after it’s introduced will have to wait a few weeks.

Yes you read that right, a few weeks. HTC Source’s source says that Verizon will exclusively sell the new HTC One “exclusively for a couple of weeks”. That potentially puts the new HTC One right up against the Galaxy S5’s release date. If HTC wants to sell a lot of these, they’d better hope that the window ends quickly.

That said, the new HTC One looks very good from all the leaks. The pricing was unable to be confirmed, but since the off-contract price is $600, we can presume that it will cost $199 on a new two year contract. When the other carriers do get the new HTC One finally, customers will hopefully line up to buy it.

Source: HTC Source

Promotional materials of the new HTC One already making its way to Verizon stores

HTC One VZW

The All New HTC One is set for an unveiling next Tuesday. And as we gear up for the announcement, the leaks are still pouring in. This time a Verizon store has been spotted carrying promotional materials for the smartphone. These don’t reveal anything new apart from the fact that Verizon will sell the device at launch with the unique case we saw leaking out a couple of weeks ago.

Also interesting from this brochure is the mention of the codename “M8” which was making the rounds before the name was officially revealed. It seems like carriers will use the M8 moniker in order to differentiate it from the predecessor.

HTC’s UK wing has announced a partnership with local retailer to launch the smartphone immediately after its launch next week in select outlets across London. We can expect Verizon and other carriers to do something similar in the U.S., as the smartphone is being announced in a New York City event.

Via: Phandroid