Following a string of leaks over the last few days, HTC has officially announced its newest flagship Android smartphone at a press event in New York this morning. The HTC One represents the firm’s latest attempt to regain lost ground in the smartphone market after a rough 2012 in the shadow of Samsung's Galaxy devices and Apple’s iPhone. Unlike it has done before, HTC will be attacking the market with just a single model and name, unifying its brand rather than releasing several different phones across different markets and carriers.
The phone is made entirely of aluminum and boasts a large 4.7-inch full HD 1080p display with 468 PPI flanked by two speaker strips with integrated amplifiers. Inside is a 1.7-GHz, quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor alongside 2GB of RAM and either 32GB or 64GB of internal storage. In terms of connectivity and ports you’ll find NFC, Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi, DLNA, infrared, and a microUSB port with MHL functionality.
For the back side camera HTC has made a bold move and ignored the megapixel race in favor of an improved 4MP sensor that’s supposedly capable of letting in 300% more light than traditional camera phones, for better low-light and action photography. The company is pitching this technology as “UltraPixel” and combined with an f/2 lens and optical image stabilization the HTC One is supposed to produce some outstanding quality stills.
The front side camera uses a 2.1MP sensor with 88-degree wide-angle lens capable of 1080p video.
On the software side HTC is complementing its imaging focus with a new feature called Zoe that takes a 3.6 second video clip and a burst of 20 full resolution photo with a single press. The video and images can be “mashed” together with background music to create short videos that can be shared with others.
The HTC One runs Android Jelly Bean 4.1.2 out of the box with a new version of Sense layered on top. The most noticeable change here is the new BlinkFeed home screen that offers a "live stream" of content, which will be pulled from social networks and 1,400 media partners like AOL, ESPN, and MTV. The idea, according to HTC, is to aggregate the "freshest content from the most relevant and interesting sources, giving it to people at a glance, all in one place, without the need to jump between multiple applications and websites."
You’ll still be able to use a more traditional Widget filled home screen if you like, however.
Other notable features include dual microphones to improve call clarity, Dropbox integration with 25GB of free storage for two years, and a universal remote TV app that combines a sleek-looking program guide with the ability to control your TV, set-top box, and receiver through the IR blaster embedded within the phone's power button. The Sense TV app supports all major US cable services along with Hulu.
The new HTC One will be available globally from 185 carriers in more than 80 regions and countries starting in March, including AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile in the U.S. Pricing was not released.