Just as it did with its debut of the original HTC One in 2013, HTC wowed the world today with its impressive new HTC One M8. With its beautiful aluminum unibody design, improved speakers and added camera features, the new One should be on the mind of any design-conscious media junkie looking to upgrade her phone.
HTC One M8: Specs
The new HTC One features a 5-inch display and a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor with speeds of 2.3GHz. Like the original HTC One, the M8 includes front-facing speakers, only these speakers are BoomSound, not Beats, and are reportedly 25% louder and higher fidelity than the original’s. Unlike the first HTC One, the M8 includes a slot for a removable microSD card. Finally, the M8 will come preloaded with Android 4.4 KitKat.
The Selfie-Centric Camera
As has been widely discussed in leaked HTC One M8 photos, the new model features three camera sensors in the back. Using new software called UFocus, the second sensor will detect and record depth data alongside photographs. This feature will allow users to refocus photos after shooting to make either the foreground or background stand out, blurring the rest. The added sensor also allows users to play with slight perspective shifts in editing. HTC’s new camera app also includes more easily accessible manual settings like for white balance and ISO. Additionally, the M8’s new wide-angle front-facing camera is being touted as a selfie-taking machine.
Using the power button on the HTC One has always been super annoying. Located at the top of the device, it just takes too much of a stretch of the hand to click. Though the M8’s power button is still located at the top of the device, HTC is introducing new software that should make the power button obsolete.
Motion Launch takes advantage of new always-on sensors that is sensitive to what you are doing with your phone at all times. Now instead of pressing the power button to turn your screen on, simply double-tap the blank screen to turn it on, and double-tap again to turn it off. Swipe right on the blank screen to open BlinkFeed and swipe down to open the dialer. You can also answer phone calls simply by placing the phone to your ear, and use your volume keys to access and control the camera.
HTC’s also launched an impressive case for the M8 that takes advantage of Motion Launch. With the Dot View case on you can take advantage of the same always-available gestures to tap your phone screen to life or access the dialer and other apps. Only the new case uses cut-out dots to give the phone a retro look, as seen above.
An Improved HTC Sense and a Battery to Outlast Them All
Along the M8 HTC has launched Sense 6 (aka “Sixth Sense”), an improved version of the current HTC Sense software that will be available to all HTC users regardless of what model they’re using. HTC has also incorporated social media feeds and sports stats into its Sense TV app, which allows you to use your phone as a universal remote control for your TV.
Finally, HTC touts a battery with 40% longer life than that of the original HTC One and, for those times when you’re running extremely low on battery life, the M8 will allow you to employ its new Extreme Power Saver Mode. This new mode shuts off all functions of your phone outside of call, text and email and can supposedly let you stretch single-digit battery percentage to 14 days of near-standby life. If that is true, the M8’s battery will help a lot of texting-addicted teenagers avoid bored-thumb syndrome during long nights.
Check out the futuristic promo video of the M8 HTC demoed at today’s conferences:
The HTC One is available at most U.S. carriers starting today for contract prices starting at $200. Learn more about the HTC One M8 on HTC’s website.
What do you think of the new HTC One’s features?
UPDATE March 26, 2:49 p.m: HTC will be making its new BlinkFeed news reading app and Zoe camera app available for all Android users, regardless of whether or not they use an Android device. The apps will be available in the Google Play Store.