Well, you’ve got to admit, we had plenty of notice on this one. The new HTC One seems to match pretty much all the rumours we’ve read, but the official name is the “HTC One (M8)”. The original HTC One, by the way, had the codename “HTC One (M7)”, so there you go.
Here’s a look at the highlights…
HTC Duo Camera
The major feature is that HTC Duo Camera – the second lens we saw on those leaks. It has the UltraPixel technology and a dual flash with 1080p HD video recording. However, the Duo Camera has a depth sensor which, with the UltraPixel sensor, adds effects like tweaking the focus after the photo has been taken with “UFocus”.
There’s a slow motion mode and the video montage system, HTC Zoe, makes a return plus it’s looking like HTC will be making app updates available through Google Play as an all new version of Zoe will be available shortly after launch. No more waiting for big firmware updates.
You can also change the background, add animations and even paste in other shots into your photos. This means you can stick in a shot of your family on a totally new photo. Another feature is called “Dimension Plus” which will let you view images from a totally different angle just by tilting the screen.
It’s not all about tricks and effects though. The new HTC One (M8) gets the sharpest and best image from the moment you hit the shutter. The LED dual flash ensures that the resulting images get the right tone and lighting. The advanced camera technology also works behind-the-scenes capturing images right from launch, so that when the shutter is activated, the sharpest possible image is instantly displayed. The camera autofocus operates at a speed of 300 milliseconds, it grabs a professional shot incredibly quickly.
Oh, and let’s note forget that front-facing camera (that everyone wants to call a “selfie camera”) – it’s a 5 megapixel wide-angle unit.
The handset, which will be available in Gunmetal Gray in selected London stores from 4PM, is yet again made from a metal unibody and will be coming to 230 operators across the globe very soon indeed.
HTC Sense 6 and Motion Launch
Inside there’s the new version of HTC Sense – version 6. There’s also a clever “Smart Sensor Hub” which will apparently anticipate what you’d like to do, before you actually do it. Geddit? HTC Sense 6? Sixth sense? Eh? Eh?
Sensors inside the phone will let you interact with your new HTC One without having to turn on the screen. The “Motion Launch” system uses position and movement which means you can answer your phone simply by sticking it next to your ear.
A double-tap (like the LG Knock-on system) let you turn the lock screen on and off, plus much more. You can also buy this special “dot view” case which will extend the double-tapping capability. Don’t ask me why, but I’m wanting this more than the actual phone at the moment.
Just double-tap the case and you can get the same result, then read texts, emails and view your call log or check the whether without having to touch the screen via a retro dot-matrix style screen.
Gah, we all hate talking about that, usually you’ll get a day out of most modern smartphones if you’re lucky. However, HTC tell us that their new handset has an “Extreme Power Saving Mode” which makes the battery power last 40% longer than the original HTC One. The result should be an epic 14 days’ worth of battery power in the “Extreme” mode, and you can still receive calls, texts and – yes – emails too.
You can crank this on automatically or manually and is ideal if you’re out and away from a power socket for some time.
The stats on this are pretty amazing. Even at a 20% battery level you can get a huge 60 hours of extra standby time. Also, for those moments when you glance at your screen and see “5% battery power”, you can activate the Extreme Power Saving setting and get a huge 15 hours of usage.
As for the audio quality. there’s oodles of “oomph” thanks to the return of HTC BoomSound and dual front speakers. They’re now 25% louder than the HTC One (M7) and produce a punchy sound thanks to the “redesigned speaker chambers and a tailored audio profile” for the best sound quality.
The magazine-style news-delivery system is back again and a new SDK has been announced too. You can find and subscribe to media sources now or create a new feed based on a subject. “News Bundles” deliver articles and tweets on a topic you’re interested in easily.
With Samsung going all “health conscious” on the S5, HTC are doing it too. This new smartphone includes the Fitbit app and you can use the Fitbit accessories (trackers) to keep an eye on your fitness and sleep patterns.
HTC Sense TV is back again and the smartphone remote control has now been tweaked to include Facebook and Twitter whilst watching a show. Live sports stats will also pop up.
Original HTC One owners won’t miss out
Let’s not forget that the original HTC One is still winning awards. Indeed, Peter Chou, CEO tells us..
In 2013 we introduced the best smartphone in the world, but we never stopped challenging ourselves and the status quo in this category. As pioneers in mobile innovation, we continue to design and build devices that will dazzle, inspire and transform the smartphone industry. Today I’m proud to launch the most stunning, intuitive and advanced handset that the industry has seen to date, the new HTC One (M8).
What’s that? You’ve got yourself an original HTC One and want to get in on some of this fun without upgrading your handset? Don’t worry my child. HTC will be making the all-new HTC Sense 6 available as upgrade from the Google Play store. The new GUI has had a full redesign and now has a clean and crisp look with distinctive and colourful themes. There’s also a new personalised theme and intuitive experience.
If you’d rather not have the HTC custom tweaks and GUI, don’t worry, the HTC One (M8) Google Play edition will be available for pre-order today and you’ll be able to buy it from the Google Play store very soon indeed.
Now, as I type Dan is running around the live event and, I’m reliably informed, has the handset in his hands right now. Keep following us on Twitter for all the latest on this brand new handset from HTC.
Want the specs? We’ll be posting them in the very next post. :) The HTC One (M8) will be available globally in Gunmetal Gray, Glacial Silver and Amber Gold. No pricing as yet.
THE BEST JUST GOT BETTER:
INTRODUCING THE HTC ONE (M8)
Delivering breakthrough design and packed with the latest HTC Sense™ 6 experience, HTC Duo Camera for advanced imaging, and intuitive Motion Launch™, the HTC One (M8) delivers an unparalleled smartphone experience for 2014
London, UK, 25th March 2014 – HTC, a global leader in innovation and design, today unveiled the highly anticipated new HTC One (M8), the ultimate evolution of the award-winning HTC One (M7). Launching in Gunmetal Gray with the all-new HTC Sense™ 6, the new HTC One (M8), boasts a high quality metal unibody with a Smart Sensor Hub that anticipates your needs and uses Motion Launch™ controls to make everyday tasks easier. New Duo Camera technology delivers creative, professional-looking photos and amazing effects, and HTC BoomSound™ again sets new standards for audio quality on a smartphone.
Peter Chou, CEO, HTC said: “In 2013 we introduced the best smartphone in the world, but we never stopped challenging ourselves and the status quo in this category. As pioneers in mobile innovation, we continue to design and build devices that will dazzle, inspire and transform the smartphone industry. Today I’m proud to launch the most stunning, intuitive and advanced handset that the industry has seen to date, the new HTC One (M8).”
Beautifully designed inside and out
Achieving another breakthrough in design and quality with the new HTC One (M8), the phone’s body has been re-crafted to create an even more stunning yet approachable look. The beautiful, durable, high quality metal unibody flows right up to the 5-inch, full HD (1080p) display, tapering to thinner edges, with softer curves for a smooth, more natural grip.
Supported by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor and running Android 4.4, KitKat, the latest version of the Android OS, the new HTC One (M8) features the all-new HTC Sense™ 6, available on the device and as an upgrade from the Google Play store. Completely redesigned with a cleaner, more striking visual style, HTC Sense™ 6 features bold, customisable colour themes and delivers a more intuitive, personalised user experience. For those who prefer the stock Android experience, the HTC One (M8) Google Play edition will be available for pre-order from today and for purchase on the Google Play store in the coming weeks.
A leap forward in smartphone imaging
The new HTC One (M8) brings a totally different dimension to mobile imaging by combining the world’s first smartphone with a Duo Camera that features HTC’s innovative HTC UltraPixel™ module, a dual flash and full 1080p HD video recording, producing incredible images in all lighting conditions and rich, high-quality video. A 5-MP wide-angle front facing camera also captures superior selfies with ease.
The Duo Camera boasts a depth sensor in addition to the main HTC UltraPixel™ module, capturing detailed depth information from a scene and enabling a range of beautiful and creative effects that allow you to do more with your images than ever before.
Instantly create professional-looking portraits by altering the focus of your image after the photo has been taken with UFocus™ or make your subject stand out in a more surprising way by altering the background with creative effects using Foregrounder. You can also give your best shots a seasonal flavour using the Seasons animations. Copy & Paste lets you place your family and friends in a different photo entirely, while Dimension Plus™ presents a unique perspective on your photos by letting you view your image from a different angle by simply tilting the screen.
The advanced camera technology also works behind-the-scenes capturing images right from launch, so that when the shutter is activated, the sharpest possible image is instantly displayed. The camera autofocus operates at a speed of 300mseconds, producing beautifully crisp images of split-second action and when the flash is required, the intelligent LED Dual Flash automatically selects the exact colour tone and light intensity for more natural skin tones and a professional-looking shot.
With so much scope to create exciting imagery, Gallery organisation has also been a priority for the designers of HTC Sense™, who have introduced Image match, a visual search tool that intuitively moves all the photos containing a particular subject into one album.
Finally the new HTC One (M8) has also integrated Slow Motion mode, which lets you shoot HD slo-mo video and then edit that video so you can slow down the action at the part you want – perfect for adding drama or for highlighting a moment.
Showcase, collaborate and share: Zoe™ in the cloud
Zoe™ is evolving into a cloud-based, collaborative sharing platform in 2014. Upload Zoe Videos for all to see, and invite friends to add their own photos, videos and favorite music to them, remixing everyone’s best content to create one incredible highlight reel of classic moments.
Coming to the new HTC One (M8) shortly after launch, the new Zoe™ app will be available for download through Google Play.
Motion Launch™ – convenient gesture controlled shortcuts
With the introduction of HTC Sense™ 6, the new HTC One (M8) boasts capabilities that give the product a sixth sense. For example, Motion Launch™ is immediately able to detect its position and movement, thanks to built-in motion sensors that allow you to interact with the phone without turning on the screen. A simple swipe will activate the device, Auto Answer allows you to answer a call by putting the phone to your ear without touching the screen – a handy tool if the phone rings when you are digging the garden or washing the dishes – and a double tap turns the lock screen on and off.
HTC Dot View™ case – protect your phone with retro flair
Taking that sixth sense functionality one step further you can extend Motion Launch™ by double tapping the dot view case, in addition to checking the time, weather, new texts, emails and calls – without touching or revealing the screen.
An outstanding phone deserves a case that protects and extends its innovative design and industry-leading functionality. Optimised by HTC Sense™ 6, the new HTC Dot View™ phone case protects the screen, whilst displaying notifications and interactions in a retro, dot-matrix style.
Extreme Power Saving Mode – extra standby time at no extra cost
The innovation doesn’t end there, as we are also changing how people use their phone battery. With the original HTC One (M7), HTC optimised power consumption so that you could get the most out of your phone. The new HTC One (M8) takes this to a whole new level making the battery power last 40% longer. Whilst normal power saving mode delivers a great experience, we have also included an Extreme power saving mode that makes your battery last even longer. Fully charged it will deliver 14 days’ worth of battery power, whilst still allowing you to receive calls, texts and emails – perfect for when you are travelling. Activated either manually or automatically, it delivers 60 hours of extra standby time at 20% power, 30 hours at 10% power and 15 hours at 5% power so, whether you are out late at night or hiking in the mountains, you never have to worry about running out of battery again.
HTC BoomSound™ gets bigger
The new HTC One (M8) again takes the smartphone audio experience to new heights. The latest HTC BoomSound™ technology creates an immersive, powerful, crystal-clear sound with rich tones from bass through to treble. Delivering sound that is 25% louder than the HTC One (M7), without compromising quality, the new HTC One (M8) has dual frontal stereo speakers with a new amplifier, redesigned speaker chambers and a tailored audio profile for a truly high definition experience.
HTC BlinkFeed™ – Your news direct to your home screen
HTC BlinkFeed™ is now more intuitive, with continuous scrolling for a fluid browsing experience, adaptable tiles and a new layout that presents articles in a clean, easy-to-read way. With the introduction of a new SDK that allows partners to integrate their own content, users can more easily find and subscribe to new media sources, in addition to instantly creating custom feeds on any topic. So whether you are into sports, movies or shopping, this feature ensures that that you will get the information most relevant to you. With News Bundles that bring all articles and tweets on the same topic together for easy reading and over 1000+ content partners now clearly categorised on one page, following the most interesting news couldn’t be simpler.
Fitness at a glance
With the new HTC One (M8), you can get healthier and stay motivated by combining its power-saving sensor hub with the preloaded Fitbit® app. Alternatively, use the phone in conjunction with one of Fitbit’s range of trackers to access advanced features such as sleep tracking and smart alarm or to capture data when exercising without your phone. Set your fitness goals and see your achievements brought straight to your HTC BlinkFeed™ home screen with no additional effort. Fitbit is the top downloaded app for connected fitness devices on the Google Play store.
HTC Sense™ TV
The only remote you need on the new HTC One (M8) has been redesigned to provide an interactive second screen. You can follow the conversation about the programme online with integrated official Facebook and Twitter streams along with all the latest fan commentary from your social circles. HTC Sense™ TV now also brings live sports statistics for the 10 most popular sports in the world, with sports fans now able to access the latest scores, match statistics and live updates from unmissable games while they watch another game on the main TV screen.
The new HTC One (M8) will be ranged with over 230 operators across the globe. From 4pm today in the UK, the new HTC One (M8) will be available from selected London stores through the following retailers – Phones 4 U, Carphone Warehouse, Vodafone, O2, Three and EE.
Europe, Middle East and Africa:
1&1 Germany, A1 Telekom Austria, AB Poland, Action Poland, Allo Ukraine, Amazon Germany, Amazon UK, AMC (Cosmote)Albania, Avea Turkey, Batelco Bahrain, Belcompany Netherlands, BH Telecom Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bite Latvia, Bite Lithuania, Bouygues Telecom France, Brightstar 20:20 mobile, BT UK, Carphone Warehouse Ireland, CarphoneWarehouse UK, Cell C RSA, Cell C South Africa, Cellcom Israel, Citrus Ukraine, Cosmote Cyprus, Cosmote Greece, Cosmote Romania& Global Bulgaria, CYTA Cyprus, Digitec Switzerland, DT Mobile(TS) Latvia, Du UAE, Dustin Sweden, Eagle Mobile Albania, EE UK, Elisa Estonia, Elisa Finland, El-Giganten Denmark, El-Giganten Sweden, Elkjöb Norway, EMT (TS) Estonia, ERC Ukraine, Etisalat UAE, EuroRtvAGD Poland, Gigantii Finland, Go Malta, H3G Austria, H3G Denmark, H3G Italy, H3G Ireland, H3G Sweden, H3G UK, HT Eronet Bosnia & Herzegovina, Ingram Micro Germany, Ingram Micro Poland, Ingram Micro Mobility UK, Interdiscount Switzerland, Irange Poland, Komputronik Poland, Komsa Poland, KPN Belgium, KPN Netherlands, LICK France, Life Belarus, LuxGSM Luxembourg, MediaExpert Poland, Media Markt Austria, Media Markt Poland, Media Markt Swizerland, Melita Malta, Meteor Ireland, Mobilcom Debitel Germany, Mobilezone Switzerland, Mobilochka Ukraine, Mobily KSA, MSH Belgium, MSH Germany, M-Tel Montenegro, M-Tel Bosnia & Herzegovina, MTI Ukraine, MTN Cyprus, MTN RSA, MTN South Africa, MTSBelarus, MTS Russia, Nawras Oman, Neonet Poland, Netcom Norway, (Telefónica) O2 Czech, (Telefónica) O2 Germany, (Telefónica) O2 Ireland, (Telefónica) O2 UK, Omantel Oman, Omnitel Lithuania, One Macedonia, Ooredoo Qatar, Orange France, Orange Maldova, Orange Poland, Orange Romania, Orange Slovakia, Orange Spain, Orange Switzerland, Orange Parteners Israel, Otto Germany, Partner Communications Israel, Pelephone Israel, Perimeter Cyprus, PhoneHouse Germany, PhoneHouse Netherlands, PhoneHouse Sweden, Phones4U UK,Play Poland, Plus Communication Albania, Plus Poland, Polkomtel Poland, Proximus Belgium, Saturn Austria, Saturn Poland, Selfridges UK, SFR France, SiMobil Slovenia, STC KSA, Sunrise Switzerland, Svyaznoy Russia, Sveris Poland, Swisscom Switzerland, TDC Denmark, Telcom RSA, Tele2 Croatia, Tele 2 Estonia, Tele2 Latvia, Tele2 Lithuania, Telia Denmark,Telia Sweden, Telekom Slovenija, Telenet Belgium, Telenor Denmark, Telenor Norway, Telenor Sweden, Telenor Hungary, Telenor Serbia, Telkom Serbia, Tesco UK, TIMItaly, TMD Germany, T-Mobile Austria, T-Mobile Croatia, T-Mobile Czech Republic, T-Mobile Germany, T-Mobile Hungary, T-Mobile Macedonia, T-Mobile Montenegro, T-Mobile Netherlands, T-Mobile Poland, T-Mobile Slovakia, Turkcell Turkey, Tus Mobil Slovenia, Velcom (TAG) Belarus, VIP Operator Macedonia, VIP Mobile Serbia, Vipnet Croatia, Virgin Mobile France, Viva Bahrain, Viva Kuwait, Vivacom Bulgaria, Vodacom RSA, Vodacom South Africa, Vodafone Albania, Vodafone Czech Republic, Vodafone Egypt, Vodafone Germany, Vodafone Greece, Vodafone Hungary, Vodafone Ireland, Vodafone Italy, Vodafone Malta, Vodafone Netherlands, Vodafone Quatar, Vodafone Romania, Vodafone Spain, Vodafone Turkey, Vodafone UK, Wataniya Kuwait, Wind Cyprus, Wind Greece, Wind Italy, Yoigo Spain, Yug Contract Ukraine, Zain Bahrain, Zain KSA, Zain Kuwait.
Asia-Pacific: 3 Hong Kong, China Mobile Hong Kong Ltd, Chunghwa Telecom Taiwan, CSL Ltd Hong Kong, Far Eastone Taiwan, Mobifone Vietnam, PCCW Ltd Hong Kong, Smartone Mobile Communications Ltd Hong Kong, Taiwan Mobile, Vibo Taiwan
China: China Mobile, China Unicom, China Telecom