Hands-on with the HTC One M8 (17 photos)

DuoCameras, stereo sound and a dot-view case separate HTC's new flagship from the pack

  • HTC's latest flagship will go on sale before Samsung's Galaxy S5, and the One (M8) will cost you less if you buy it from Optus or Vodafone. Does this make the One (M8) the bargain of the year?

  • The HTC One (M8) has a larger 5in, Full HD screen. The bigger screen has one of the highest pixel-per-inch densities at 441ppi. This easily eclipses the 326ppi of Apple’s retina-grade iPhone 5S.

  • Front-firing stereo speakers have become the hallmark of HTC smartphones. The speakers, referred to as BoomSound by HTC, feature dedicated amplifiers and produce 25 per cent louder sound on the new One (M8). This is despite HTC ending its affiliation with Beats Audio.

  • Vast upgrades have been made to the front facing camera. It captures photos at 5MP, can detect faces, has an aperture of f/2.0 and a wide angle lens.

  • Almost all of the HTC’s body is made from brushed metal. Unlike the older M7 in the background, the M8 tapers all the way from the back until it meets the bezel of the screen. Doing this on the side and the base makes the smartphone more comfortable in the hand.

  • Two rear cameras are situated on the M8’s back. The Ultrapixel camera now works with a secondary camera that recognises where things are in a photo in order to separate the foreground from the background. Subjects in photos can stand against a blurred background, animations or even be pasted into other photos.

  • Metal is a worrying material to use on a smartphone. It is conducive of heat and it could potentially interfere with cellular and internet connections. HTC claims the One (M8) not only overcomes these obstacles, but it benefits from improved IR, Wi-Fi and cellular connections. Capping the top of the smartphone with a plastic strip has helped the company achieve this.

  • The HTC One (M8) is 9mm at its thickest point, but you’ll never notice because the smartphone has tapered edges and an ergonomic curve across its spine. On its left is a microSD slot, which supports 128GB cards, and a volume rocker.

  • The One (M8) weighs 160 grams. On its right is a tray for your Nano SIM.

  • The new HTC One is almost a centimeter taller than the original. However, you’ll appreciate the extra height when you make use of the speakers.

  • Approximately 70 percent of the M7’s body was made from aluminum. The new M8 represents a great improvement in design with its metal body covering almost 90 per cent of the smartphone.

  • HTC’s Dot View case is the icing on the cake. Notifications are displayed over 5-inches in an LED-pixel arrangement. It’ll recognise simple gestures to help you answer and reject calls. Check out some of the animations on the following slides.

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