HTC unveils new HTC One (M8)
MANILA, Philippines — HTC unveiled the much anticipated successor to its flagship smartphone the HTC One on Tuesday March 25 in simultaneous events in New York and London (March 26 in Manila).
The new HTC One (M8) maintains the familiar aluminum unibody design of its predecessor but comes with a larger 5-inch Full HD display (up from 4.7-inches) and more rounded corners for a more comfortable grip. The phone is slightly taller, wider and heavier.
Boom Sound speakers are also still on the usual spot above and below the display but HTC promises that the speakers produce sound that is 25% louder.
The headline feature of the new smartphone is called Duo Camera, a third camera located on the back of the phone that works as a depth sensor. The extra camera enables software features like UFocus that allows users to refocus a subject after a photo has been taken.
The HTC One (M8)’s UltraPixel main camera still shoots at a measly 4 megapixel images with the same 1/3-inch imaging sensor - the phone still has the largest pixels on a smartphone to-date but may not necessarily deliver the best in terms of image quality. With the update HTC promises better low light performance and conversly better photos in bright lighting conditions — fixing the original HTC One's tendency to blow-out highligfhts.
The camera promises autofocus speeds of up to 300 milliseconds and can shoot 1080p video at 30 frames per second. The phone also gets a bigger 5 megapixel front facing camera (up from 2.1MP).
Unlike its predecessor, the new HTC One now has provisions for expandable memory (up to 128GB via optional micro SD card near the volume rocker) but its battery is still non-user-replaceable.
The HTC One (M8) is powered by a 2.3 GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor and 2GB of RAM and comes with either 16 or 32GB of storage and a 2,600 mAh battery. The smartphone runs the latest version of Android 4.4 KitKat with an updated version of HTC’s user interface (UI) Sense 6.
BlinkFeed is now continuous scroll instead of paginated with HTC announcing a new SDK that allows partners to integrate their own content. HTC has also partnered with fitness tracking company Fitbit to bundle the Fitbit Android app and to use the phone to as a tracker to monitor sleep and exercise.
The phone also introduces a new gesture-based navigational system called Motion Launch that includes a double tap to wake up phone feature similar to LG’s Knock On. The feature will also allow users to check new texts and emails without touching the screen.
Like the Samsung Galaxy S5 the HTC One (M8) comes with Extreme Power Saving Mode that promises up to 14 day’s worth of battery power.
The new HTC One (M8) will be available in Gunmetal Gray, Glacial Silver and Amber Gold. In North America the phone is available online starting today March 25. Unlocked and developer editions of the HTC One (M8) are also available to customers through www.htc.com at an MSRP of $649.99. A Google Play edition running stock Android will be available next week.